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Is Velvet Sustainable?

by Toni Olukiran

1min read

Velvet is the material that makes any outfit seem that little bit more luxurious. But is it sustainable? Read on for the full lowdown on the fast-fashion fave. 

About velvet

Traditional velvet was made using silk, woven with a short and dense pile. It is a labour-intensive fabric to make from a loom, hence why it was a material associated with royalty and status. Though it was often worn by ruling classes and royalty in Europe, its origins actually lie in Eastern Asia, where velvet has been found dating as far back as 403 BC.

Is velvet sustainable?

This is dependent on what it is made from. Velvet nowadays can be made from different materials, including cotton, viscose and polyester — and this is what can determine how sustainable it is. A velvet piece of clothing can be made from organic cotton, which makes it more sustainable, or could be made with polyester, made from petroleum and with lasting impacts to the environment. 

Finding sustainable velvet

Look for clothing that uses sustainable fabrics in its production, such as organic cotton, modal, hemp and more. Vintage pieces are also a great way to wear velvet but with sustainability in mind, though be aware that sometimes these use silk, which is not a vegan material and so it’s up to you how comfortable you feel about wearing it. 

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Toni Olukiran
by Toni Olukiran

Toni is one of our lovely Content Marketing Assistants, and when she’s not writing posts about everything from Jamaican cooking to vegan champagne, she’s making a Spotify playlist (she was at 200, at her last count) or playing tennis in the park.

Read more from Toni


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