Since the 60’s synthetic fabrics are booming, but what we didn’t know back then is that washing these (often very cheap) garments leads to us eating our lovely synthetic clothing pieces… wait, what?!
Did you know?
Research has found, that each week we consume the amount of one whole creditcard of microplastics…Yikes!
You might have heard about microplastics before; they are found everywhere around us. Did you know that these nasty fibers are also coming from our clothes? Stupid right… Today, over 60% of fabrics are synthetic and this number is only increasing as it’s so cheap to produce. However we now know that washing these garments lead to microfibers ending up in our ecosystem as well as food chain. They are more harmful than we think. There are a few different ways to tackle this problem, and one clever solution I have recently found is the PlanetCare microplastics washing machine filter.
What are microplastics?
Every time we wash our clothes, hundreds of thousands of microplastics are released into the waste water. Microplastics are tiny plastic particles that come from our synthetic garments. You may not always be able to see them with your own eyes, but they are definitely there!
According to PlanetCare, an average load of 6 kg releases more than 700,000 plastic fibers into the wastewater. This is the equivalent of throwing one light plastic grocery bag into the ocean every week.
Because washing machines don’t come with an inbuilt filter that catches these microscopic plastic fibers, all of these plastic particles end up in the wastewater. They pollute the environment and harm our precious ecosystem, mostly because they are not degradable. Being released into our ecosystem, they eventually even end up in our food chain and drinking water. By doing so, the plastics even end up inside of us. Yikes!
What can we do about these microplastics?
You might be thinking… What do I have to do with this? Well… our oceans and the health of the ecosystems depend on our action. The Plastic Soup Foundation states that by 2050, there are more plastics in the oceans than fish. Just imagine what this could do to us and our own health. It has been said that the fashion industry (and consumers) is responsible for 20-30% of all the microplastics in the oceans.
This is why a sustainable wardrobe is so important. By making better choices when shopping, you can actually help the environment. Go for a sustainable/ all-natural fabric, wash less and with an eco-friendly laundry detergent and most importantly:
Use a microplastics washing machine filter
Want to drastically reduce your plastic footprint from your washing? I would say go for the PlanetCare microplastics washing machine filter. This product is well thought of, surprisingly easy and works perfectly. It basically is an external filter for your washing machine that filters all the water, but stops 90% of the microplastics. When you purchase your microplastics washing machine filter you will receive everything you need to add it to your machine.
- You attach your filter to the side of your washing machine. Connect the tubes correctly, adjust the filter and seal it off with the topper. You place the counter, which helps you to count your 20 washes effectively, on the machine and it is ready for use! Super easy.
- With about 20 washes, the cartridge will be full and you will need to replace it. That’s when the extra cartridges come into place. When you place your last cartridge, make sure to package the full cartridges and send them back to PlanetCare. You can also have a subscription, this way they will send new cartridges to you, so you don’t have to worry about it.
Good to know:
PlanetCare has a system with a closed loop, meaning that they don’t add to the waste. By sending your full cartridges back, PlanetCare clean them so that they can be reused again. The cleaning proces is closed, and so, the microplastics are contained and do not end up in the garbage system. They collect the microplastics and when they have a large amount, they will create something out of it (as fi insulation mats). This is a big difference from a microplastics washing bag.
For just €9,95 each month, you will have the full package. You’ll receive everything you need and have the full subscription!
Some interesting facts
- In 2020 PlanetCare users prevented 25.000 bags worth of pollution.
- PlanetCare users will stop over 500 tons of microfibre emissions just by filtering their laundry wastewater in five years. The same amount would fill 16 Olympic pools and weigh as much as 105 elephants.
- PlanetCare already attracted the attention of policymakers and have a direct impact on legislation changes: France was the first who passed a circular economy law under which every washing machine sold after 1 January 2025 will have to be fitted with a microfibre filter.
More care tips and resources?
Want to know more? Here is a short list of my personal resources:
- The Plastic Soup Foundation for more information about this global problem and the solutions we can do ourselves. Here, you can also calculate your plastic footprint.
- PlanetCare for information on the filter and scientific results;
Want to read some similar articles? You can start your sustainable wardrobe care journey by reading these two:0