How do I keep these plastic fibres out of the sea?

The simplest solution would be to stop buying synthetic fibres, but that isn’t always as easy or environmentally friendly as it might sound. Besides, binning all of your non-natural clothing just adds to the problem of persistent plastic pollution by sending them to landfill where they will likely remain forever.

Washing items less frequently is always an option. As nearly 2,000 fibres are shed every time a synthetic item goes through your machine, skipping a wash day here and there can make a difference. Not to mention that when you do eventually fill the drum up, washing a full load reduces friction resulting in fewer fibres going down the drain.

Expensive filters that catch the fibres inside your washing machine are available, but a more accessible alternative might be a microfibre catching bag. Invented by a group of German surfers and tested by the Fraunhofer research institute, Guppy Friend is one such device. Its tiny mesh keeps the fibres inside the bag allowing you to dispose of them properly once your clothing is clean.


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