Emma Elwin

Notes from a Swedish stylist

Win an outfit from Gina Tricot

Posted in Style
by Emma Elwin on 13 April, 2015

Gina Tricot's sustainable collection

As you may know, I love getting readers’ advice on how to lead a more sustainable life. Small everyday things like bringing a piece of trash everytime you leave a beach, bringing a cotton bag instead of buying a plastic bag when buying groceries, using a fruit facial mask instead of one with toxics and, of course, caring for clothes in less wasteful ways.

Please share your smartness with me by submitting your best green advice in the comments below! One of you will win an outfit from the Gina Tricot sustainable collection.

More info on Gina Tricot’s sustainable collection here.
The campaign!
Me talking about the future of fashion.
Me talking about a sustainable wardrobe.
Me talking about why I care about sustainability.

Make it last in collaboration with Gina Tricot.

Emil Fagander


Kim: Why haven't you announced a winner yet?
May 10, 2015

Andi: My best environmental tips is to shop food smarter. In Sweden an average swede throws away 56 kg eatable food a year. That means that we in Sweden are responsible for a release of 1.9 million tons carbon dioxide a year. Just from wasting food. Not to mention all other downsides such as pollution from farming etc. Shop smarter and buy less. Don't buy big packs you probably won't finish. Smell the food before throwing it away. The best before date is there as a guideline, we tend to follow it slavishly. Make new dishes from left-overs etc. Use your imagination. Be aware of how you consume! All best.
April 21, 2015

Yasemin: Hi! I haven't read the previous comments so I don't know if these have been stated before but I have two green tips. One is to eat less (or ideally, no) meat. Raising and tending livestock accounts for a large amount of waste. The animals themselves emit a lot of methane and they erode the soil that they graze on. I'm a meat lover myself but I've been trying to eat less meat. Another tip is to thrift/buy secondhand! My college has a facebook page where students can sell things and it's great. I can get "new" items without contributing to the wasteful production of clothing.
April 19, 2015

jenaly: Organic everything as much as possible. This can be very hard with mostly everything being gmo and what not and those craving for junk that we have gotten so use too. But I try my best to buy organic or natural products as much as I possibly can whether it be clothes, food or body products, etc. Not only is it better and healthier for us but also the future of this world.
April 19, 2015

Kim: 1. Buy bamboo towels. They absorb more water than regular cotton towels. They look luxurious, have a certain luster about them. They provide a better quality, lasting longer. Ps. Great if you like me, air dry your hair. Water is very drying on both skin and hair. 2. Bring your own grocery bag. I've found one that fits so much yet is very sturdy. Also added bonus that it's comfortable on the shoulder. The one I use is from Ikea Family - Knalla 402.823.14 (the black one doesn't interfere with my scandinavian wardrobe, very important...) 3. Give up on tumble drying. If it doesn't destroy your clothing it's shortening the life cycle of the garment. Unnecessary use of energy. 4. Find a really good cleanser that takes off your stubborn eye make up. No need for buying cotton pads anymore. I'd recommend Paula's Choice Balancing Oil-reducing Cleanser (even removes the impossible Benefit They're Real Mascara) 5. Set a yearly budget for shopping skincare, make up, shoes etc. That way you know what you have to work with. Research products before buying, so many blogs out there have swatches for your benefit. Reduce the amount of exposure you have with online shops, beauty/fashion blogs. If you don't know what to do with the extra time on your hand, read feminist literature and support your local girl gang! 6. Use this website http://into-mind.com/ and make wardrobe changes. Find a system that would work for you. Figure out what you really need and feel comfortable in. 7. Connect with environment. Buy plants and decorate with flowers! Be outside and explore the scenery. Take a trip outside town. Visit botanical gardens. Try planting your favorite herbs. See if you have a farmers market near by or maybe even an urban garden? 8. Take pride in the little things you are doing. Feel good about the bamboo towels, don't look at them and feel guilty about 15 min shower you just had. It's not your responsibility to save the world but changing or tweaking the things that is possible for you and that fits your life style is job well done!
April 18, 2015

Isabel: Amazing all the GREEN LOVE going on around here! My tip also has to do with water waste. I thought of a tip I once got from a friend. He told me he used the water from the dryer (off course it's better to not use a dryer at all and to air dry your clothes) to clean the house. Evidently you also use environment friendly products (vinager, baking soda,...) to do that. Add a drop of essential oil (pine, lemon or lavender) to the cleaning water and your house smells divine again!
April 16, 2015

Sylvie KOENIG: I don't have just one best green advice. I have a least 3… The first one is to start an incredible edible project in your neighborhood. It will provide you with delicious fresh vegetables and your friends and neighbors will be able to enjoy them as well and be enticed to join the movement. Cook less (I use a solar oven I built myself with scraps as much as possible) and eat more fresh food, forgetting altogether meat and fish. The second one is to make as much of your bags and clothes as possible. Avoid buying cotton, unless it is second hand. Tear worn out dresses, shirts and skirts into thin strips and knit them. The result looks stunning as you can mix together different fabrics for an outstanding look. You can also over embroider the knitting for a more elaborate look. The third one is avoid buying anything that comes into a packaging unless it is paper or cardboard that can be made into a compost which will be used in the incredible edible garden.So, stop shopping at supermarkets and go back to the farmers markets. Stuff your fruits and veggies into totes made from recycled juice pouches stitched together. They are strong and look gorgeous. I guess this is somewhat more than three and I have many more green tips as I was green before green was trendy. I always remembered my grand mother carrying water from the well to the house and reflected at a very young age that water was precious and should not be wasted. And what was true for water had to be true for the rest of our natural resources.
April 15, 2015

Lisa: Although I am no Lauren Singer – who is living a zero waste life in NYC (!) – I do try to live as green as possible. This means cooking organic, buying sustainable clothing ànd furniture, and taking six chickens as pets ( goodbye green waste, they eat like crazy!). My best green advice, however, is to buy all your cosmetics at Lush. This company’s handmade products consist of natural substances, such as fresh fruit and vegetables, essential oils, nut butters, etc. They insist on using as little preservatives and synthetics as possible and they refuse animal testing <3. Their best asset is their reusable packaging. When you’ve used up all your cleanser, you can just bring the container back to the store and they’ll reuse it for new fresh products. They also sell shampoo bars, which you keep in an iron tin, and even their mascara comes in a glass container. This system allows you to be vain without hurting the planet, which is obviously a win-win situation! ;)
April 14, 2015

Paulien: Hi Emma! I'm not a frequent commenter on blogs, but I wanted to congratulate you on this wonderful project that you are participating in. Not only is it a great thing that people become more aware of the environment through something really accessible like high street stores, I just think the collection looks awesome too. I especially love the beautiful delicate white kaftan! My favourite green tip actually has to do with my horrible cooking skills. Since I can't handle any pots and pans, I usually buy my products like sauces in glass jars. Instead of throwing these out, I recycle them to store flowers, pasta or cotton pads. Pretty and pretty green!
April 14, 2015

Sandra: My best advice is to mend and take care of your clothes. Show them the love and care they need.
April 14, 2015

Rebecka: My best advice is to purchase the right clothes from the beginning, as what difference does it make if you buy second hand clothing or sustainable clothes unless you really don't intend to wear them? It has taken me 24 years to figure out 1) what type of clothing I always end up wearing (a shirt, sweater, jeans and sneakers) 2) what looks good on my body (I don't feel comfortable in too much bright colors and tight tops) and most importantly, 3) what garments I will not get sick of wearing overtime! So as long as you shop according to these three rules (what is your everyday wear? What suits your body? What clothes will you not get bored of/ go out of style?) you will end up making better choices, not leaving clothes in the back of your closet but wearing them and loving them and maybe even passing them down! Which in turn is more sustainable and easy on the wallet :)
April 14, 2015

Rebecca: Det finns många saker man kan göra men som du sa de små sakerna som räknas i vardagen. Det kan vara allt ifrån att strunta i att torktumla kläderna och låta de självtorka, städa med produkter som inte har gifter i sig, grönsåpa for the win! Att ha en eller två köttfria dagar i veckan är en annan viktig och bra sak, här spara man in på naturen otroligt mkt. Jag tycker det viktigaste är de små sakerna som förändrar, att man tänker till en extra gång du tar upp en plastpåse när du handlar frukt och grönt. Eller skita i att ta bilen till jobbet. Med sunt förnuft och förståelse kan vi gå långt!
April 14, 2015

Veronica: Kreativt och roligt, alldeles gratis och miljövänligt så det förslår!
April 14, 2015

Veronica: Förutom att shoppa second hand : håll ögonen öppna för klädbytardagar. Ta med grejerna som ligger längst in i garderoben, lämna in dem och låt någon annan ha glädje av dem. Gå sedan därifrån med andras bortglömda skatter! Kreativt och roligt , alldeles gratis samt alldeles gratis
April 14, 2015

Fannie: För att vara lite extra skonsam mot mina kläder brukar jag "stryka" tröjor och klännigar genom att antingen låta de hänga inne i badrummet medan jag duschar (perfekt när det blir väldigt fuktigt) eller så tar jag en sprayflaska med vatten, fuktar kläderna och låter de hänga 30-60 min och torka. Funkar kanon på de flesta tyger!
April 13, 2015

Mette: My new years resolution this year was to stop wasting food. A small thing but one of the ways I feel, I can contribute to making the world more green.
April 13, 2015

Maria: Skippa nytillverkade jeans med slitning, revor, hål, lappar ... Köp ett par klassiska jeans och nöt på dem själv! Jeans är världens skönaste, coolaste, snyggaste och mest personliga plagg - låt slitaget komma när du använder dem länge! De blir bara snyggare och mer DU ju längre du har dem.
April 13, 2015

Elin: My best tips is to always bring a tote bag with you, you never know when you'll be needing it. I always say no to plastic bag and if I don't have the space in my rug sack or in my tote bag I carry it or I don't buy it. You can also try to buy your cleaning products made from natural ingredients which won't spread toxins in your home or even try to make your own cleaning products. I also make my own moisturiser from coconut oil, aloe vera (99%) and essential oils. Works perfectly! Eat less meat, shop second hand (love eBay) and swap your toothbrush to one made from bamboo. If we all do a little it will make a huge impact and we can reduce our impact on the environment.
April 13, 2015

Lovisa: Me and my best friend started a kind of pact for about 18 months, or so, ago where we decided never to buy clothes made of non-sustainable materials, except for second hand (because then it's good, so the materials gets used as much as they can).And I think that is my best tip actually. It decreased my shopping A LOT, I don't know how many items I've wanted to buy, but didn't because it was made of ex. polyester. Also it's great to always have someone who you kind of have to "defend" your new item against, it makes you really question if you actually need it or not.
April 13, 2015

Rania: Jag har alltid med mig tygpåse (från WWF) när jag ska handla såväl mat som gå på stan, och tackar nej till plastkassar. Nu har jag dragit ner på mitt shoppande rejält, men när det är dags handlar jag kläder på second hand, håller koll på materialet när jag köper nytt och köper av vänner som säljer ut via bloggar och instagram. Vi byter även kläder med varandra, jag har en påse kläder som vandrar runt bland släktingar just nu faktiskt - på så vis fick jag mig ett par nya jeans från min svägerska i förra veckan! Sen gör vi en hel massa annat i hemmet också, men det är inte kläd/mode-relaterat!
April 13, 2015

Maria: Två suuperenkla saker många ändå glömmer bort: 1. Släcka lampor som inte används. Dvs. innan du går ut, släcka allt, är du inte i köket, släck de lamporna! 2. Stänga av vattenkranen när den inte behöver vara på. Så många låter det bara rinna. :*
April 13, 2015

Moa: My best green/more sustainable advice is to think twice (or maybe 10) before you buy anything new. Do you really need it? Can you get something similar borrowing it from friend or swapping it with a friend? Can you buy it second hand, maybe you dont need it straight away and you can keep your eyes open for second hand opportunities? If you really want/need to buy it new: Look for pieces you really love that you know will work for longer than just one season. Look for sustainable or recykled materials. Dont buy it stright away wait for aday or two and see if you still want it as badly. These are questions and things I try to ask myself everytime I want to buy something new. Even though you end up buying new stuff sometimes this thinking will at least make you aware of the problem:) Good luck everyone! Cheers / Moa
April 13, 2015

Elisabeth: My best green advise is to start cooking your food with vegetables as the center piece. I know that everyone does not feel 100% comfortable with only vegan or vegetarian food, but I think everyone could start thinking more green when they cook. Choose some plant based food that you like, cook them with your favorite spices and add some toppings or siders if you feel that it is necessary. If you can, try to grow some own veggies and herbs - the difference in taste is remarkable. If more people would eat plant based food the would (and the grocery stores) would be both fresher and greener!
April 13, 2015

Malin bergström: Eftersom jag är student och inte har så mycket pengar men ändå vill försöka bidra till en grönare värld så brukar jag tänka att även de små förändringarna gör skillnad. Har jag råd att köpa exakt alla matvaror ekologiska? Nej. Kan jag välja att köpa viss mat ekologisk dom jag vet har störst negativ inverkan på miljön (tex kaffe, bananer)? Ja. Samma sak vad gäller kläder. Kan jag sälja vidare de kläder jag inte använder? Ja. Kan jag tänka på att inte impulsshoppa massa onödiga plagg? Ja. Jag tror man kommer väldigt långt på att hela tiden, lite grann vara medveten om vilka val man har och försöka välja de miljövänligaste sätten.
April 13, 2015

Alexandra: Mitt bästa gröna tips är att inte direkt fokusera på det gröna utan på dig själv först. Vad kan du göra här och nu? Kanske det första är att börja forska och läsa på mer så man kan göra trygga val i framtiden och byta ut det gamla allt eftersom. Våga leta på second hand i första hand innan man köper helt nytt.
April 13, 2015

Vanessa: Hello! :) I'm not sure if this is open to Canadian residents but I'll play anyway. My green tip is to look for natural, quality fibers in thrift stores. I'm always looking for silk tank tops or linen dresses or shirts. I first started doing this because I couldn't afford to buy new pieces (to be honest, still can't) but I then started to feel good that I was recycling in some way. Plus, it was a bonus to find a unique vintage piece.
April 13, 2015

Martina: Eftersom kläder är det som den här sidan handlar främst om, så är mitt tips att handla second hand. Många av de ytterjackor jag använder har varit min farmors och är från 60- och 70-talet, och vad passar bättre med kläder från 70-talet än just precis nu? Mitt råd är att leta i era föräldrars och föräldrars föräldras garderober, och sedan matcha era fynd med kläder ni redan har i er egna garderob. Ett annat tips är att inte köpa nytt så ofta utom att använda det man redan har, på så sätt så kan man se vilka oändliga kombinationer man kan sätta ihop med de få eller många plaggen man har.Sedan när jag handlar så köper jag oftast lite dyrare plagg i bättre kvalitet eftersom de plaggen håller längre, och med det kan jag säga att min basgarderob har hållt väldigt länge. Det här var några tips som jag använder mig av för att tänka mer miljövänligt när jag handlar kläder.
April 13, 2015

thefaircloset: My best green advice is to talk to your grandmother. People their age have tons of tricks for mending clothes, preventing food waste and cleaning tips with substances wich would now be considered environmentally friendly. Did you know for instance, you can clean your windows with an onion cut in half and put in water?
April 13, 2015

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