26 June 2024

Microplastics - Is it leather? On Microplastics

The Science is fascinating and alarming – check out this article, it is scary.

Our blind dependency on all things “not natural” will certainly be catching up with us in terms of our future personal health and environmental well-being.

Fast-Fashion has driven the clothing industry to become the largest single polluter of micro-plastics in the world – second only to Car tires (hmm, think about that for a minute). Over 70% of all clothing is made from plastic materials. Those of us old enough have followed this harrowing trend – with what started as “groovy” polyester leisure suits in the late 60s and 70s until the term “polyester” became uncool. Manufacturers didn’t give up there – enter the “new” and improved polyester entering the markets under a number of false marketing names like Lycra, Rayon, Spandex etc. These materials quickly became marketed as “hip” performance and “wicking” fabrics that any serious athlete or those hoping to look like serious athletes can slip on and wear to almost any occasion. Best when accompanied by a latte.

The problem is – all these plastic clothes are causing us harm. Microplastics are nasty things both in the human body and in the environment. And every time you wash your Lululemons (hopefully regularly) you release up to 6 million microplastics into the environment that can be inhaled or contaminate the environment and yes … never go away.

Whatever happened to natural fibers. The absorbency or real cotton or the durability or real leather. Real, natural materials tend to cost more – so manufacturers find a cheaper alternative and hype up the performance benefits. Unfortunately, they never address the health or environmental detriments to producing, using and disposing of all these fake materials. Why, you ask? Because they don’t want you to demand better. Better for yourself and better for the environment. We live in a profit-driven world enabled by marketing falsehoods. If we don’t wake up soon, we will all be paying for the ignorance. Remember – from the 1930s – 1960s cigarettes were marketed as something that was good for you. Breathe on that for awhile.

About APLF

We bring leather, material and fashion businesses together: an opportunity to meet and greet face to face. We bring them from all parts of the world so that they can find fresh partners, discover new customers or suppliers and keep ahead of industry developments.


We organise a number of trade exhibitions which focus on fashion and lifestyle: sectors that are constantly in flux, so visitors and exhibitors alike need to be constantly aware both of the changes around them and those forecast for coming seasons.


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