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Ten for the Ocean

Washing instructions against microplastic pollution

Synthetic garments loose plastic particles. Particularly during washing, the plastic fibers that break off end up in the wastewater and so far cannot be filtered out efficiently.

The microplastic particles enter the sea, accumulate toxins and are ingested by fish and other marine life. The plastic from our clothes thus ends up on our plates and harms not only nature but also us.

"Ten for the Ocean" are 10 simple washing tips that help us change our washing behavior and reduce the mircroplastic pollution in our rivers, lakes and oceans.

WASH LESS
Frequent washing wastes energy and harms our waters. Instead, where possible air out your clothes and wash out stains by hand.
DON’T TUMBLE DRY
The mechanical forces inside a tumble dryer are one of the major culprits of microplastic pollution. Synthetic clothes dry super-fast anyway, so air-dry your clothes instead. If you have to use a dryer, please make sure to filter the condensed water.
USE THE GUPPYFRIEND
The Guppyfriend Washing Bag protects garments and filters microplastic fibers from synthetic textiles. Thus, it prevents microplastics from entering nature.
WASH COLDER
It is a dogma that has been passed down from one generation to the next: Wash colors at 40°C / 104°F and bed linen at 60°C / 140°F. In the vast majority of cases, 30°C/86°F is sufficient. So, avoid high temperatures and thus protect fibers and nature.
BUY LESS, BUT BETTER
What do you really need? When purchasing clothes, make sure they are of high quality and last a long time. Take care of your clothes, pass them on or make sure they get recycled. Every purchase has an impact on the ocean.

WASH SHORTER
The longer you wash, the more fibers break. All washing machines have a short washing program. Use it.
PLASTIC FREE DETERGENT ONLY
Washing powder often contains liquid polymers and mineral abrasives. These tend to increase friction, leading to more fibers breaking. Look for a detergent without such ingredients and don’t use more than necessary. This way you protect clothes and the environment.
DON’T WASH SHOES
Anything solid washed with your clothes leads to significantly more fibers breaking. Avoid items such as shoes and shin guards. Also using washing balls and soap nuts – even when used with good intentions – results in more plastic in the ocean.
REDUCE ROTATION SPEED
A lot of friction happens during the spin cycle. Synthetic textiles dry fast. Skip the spin cycle or at least reduce the rpm (rotation per minute).
SEPARATE TEXTILES: HARD FROM SOFT
Separate textiles with a hard surface from those with a soft surface. If you stop washing things like jeans and your fleece items in the same wash load, you will reduce your contribution to wash-related microplastic pollution. In this way, you protect the environment.