Campaigning for Change

Meet the change-makers supporting Levi’s global Buy Better, Wear Longer campaign.

What what you already own is the most sustainable thing you can do, but when you do buy, buy better.

That’s the message of Levi’s “Buy Better, Wear Longer” campaign, which speaks to our shared responsibility on the environmental impacts of apparel production and consumption.

Change-makers Jaden Smith, Xiye Bastida, Melati Wijsen, Xiuhtezcatl, Emma Chamberlain and Marcus Rashford are bringing their voices to the campaign too.

Between 2000 and 2010, global clothing consumption has doubled.

Globally, it is estimated that more than half of what fast fashion has produced is disposed of in under a year.

Collectively, if we wear our clothes twice as long, we can reduce our environmental impact by 44 per cent.

“Ultimately, Levi’s denim is meant to be worn for generations, not seasons,” says Levi’s brand president Jennifer Sey. “So we are using this campaign to encourage consumers to be more intentional about their apparel choice: to wear each item longer, for example; to buy SecondHand; or use our in-store tailor shops to extend the life of their garments.”

Levi’s now has sustainability woven into everything it does, which includes improving manufacturing processes.

Seventy-five per cent of Levi’s cotton now comes from more sustainable sources; 4.2 billion litres of water has been saved since Levi’s introduced Water<Less in 2011; 9.6 billion litres of water reused and recycled; and 65 per cent of Levi’s products are currently made in factories that run Worker Wellbeing programmes.

Goals that the company is currently working towards include 100 per cent sustainably sourced cotton and 100 per cent renewable energy in owned and operated facilities by 2025; and 40 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in the Levi’s supply chain.

Turning onto thrifting 

Jaden Smith’s interest in water has led him to raise awareness around our planet’s limited resources.

“The world we live in encourages us to constantly buy. It puts us in a bad cycle,” says Smith.

“I’m glad Levi’s is changing that message by making thrifting cool. Some of my favourite pairs are thrifted. And I’m even more happy to see Levi’s is supporting these amazing young voices who are all speaking up for the environment.”

Levi’s SecondHand keeps coveted pieces in circulation.

It’s all about connecting people to timeless styles they otherwise may not have found and, most importantly, saving clothing from going into a landfill.

Customers can drop off their old Levi’s jeans and denim jackets at participating stores.

The garments are professionally cleaned and put back into circulation on secondhand.levi.com.

This autumn, Levi’s also launched Wellthread, introducing 55 per cent hemp blended fabrics, new natural dye techniques, the expanded use of organically grown cotton, and ensuring the recyclability of every Wellthread garment that is made.

Hemp generally requires less water and fewer pesticides during cultivation than conventionally grown cotton, resulting in cleaner, healthier soils.

The hemp blended into these garments comes from rain-fed crops, which reduces water usage even further.

And of course the jeans still have the same look as classic Levi’s denim.

Sharing innovations

Levi’s has also addressed the use of plant-based natural dyes, which can traditionally require the use of toxic chemicals to make them penetrate the yarn.

Instead, Levi’s uses a technique by which ultrasonic waves are used to apply the dye to the fibre.

These innovations, including Levi’s Water<Less technology, have been open-sourced to share and encourage the wider industry to adopt these water-saving practices.

Caring for your denim

· Wash less Ideally you should only wash once every 10 wears to maintain fit.

· Wash cold Washing in cold water protects against fading and saves energy and money. Turning your jeans inside out in the wash also helps preserve colour.

· Line dry Dryers use energy, plus they are the natural enemy of jeans. Hanging them on the line inside out prevents fading – and the pockets dry quicker too.

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