We are Circular
We are changing the fashion industry by putting the world we live in, first.
Our mission is to change how we wear clothing and align our fashion choices with a more sustainable future. We believe we can all enjoy design while being kinder to the planet.
It’s no secret that the fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world. It produces 10% of humanity’s climate change-causing greenhouse gas emissions - that's more than all international flights and shipping combined, at pre-Covid levels. And in New Zealand alone, households send 67 million kg of fabric to landfills every year.
But we believe there is a better way.
Inspired by the concept of the circular economy, Circular is an Auckland-based rental service that promotes garment and resource re-use, with the aim of reducing waste and offsetting the pollution that accompanies new clothing production.
The number of times a garment is worn is the most direct way of reducing waste and pollution in the textiles industry - Ellen MacArthur Report, 'A New Textiles Economy: Redesigning Fashion's Future'
We believe clothing rental is the solution to a better world. Instead of buying new clothes, rental increases garment wear by keeping the clothes in constant use, instead of collecting dust in closets or being thrown in the trash. By extending the useful life of one garment bu just 9 months, you can reduce carbon emissions between 20 - 30%.
Data suggests 26% of clothing is disposed because the owner no longer likes it, and 42% is disposed because it no longer fits. In either case, if the item is worn by someone else it would mean one less garment discarded and also one less new garment needs to be made to replace it.
We understand that moving to a rental based model isn’t enough to fix the impact of the clothing industry alone. But we do believe that small changes, can, and do, make a big difference.
ACTIONS ALWAYS SPEAK LOUDER
Our aim is to keep any garment in use for as long as possible. When an item is returned, our supremo repair specialist will make any repairs needed so its in a good condition for someone else to wear.
Popularity comes and goes. When an item falls from demand, we’ll donate it to a local charity so it can be worn again by someone in need. Any clothing donated will be in a good, wearable condition - we won't make this someone else's problem because we know that New Zealand charities incur huge bills every year to dispose of poor quality donated clothing.
Every item comes to the end of its life. When a garment is irreparably damaged and is unable to be worn again we will take care of it to ensure the fabric is managed in the most sustainable way possible. We'll look for ways to re-use the fabric and we aim to send nothing to landfill. We’re always looking for better ways to recycle and re-use fabric, so let us know if you're in the business or you have some bright ideas!
Every returned garment will be laundered, and environmentally-friendly practices will be followed. This includes; cold washes to decrease energy use, short cycles to reduce the amount of microplastics entering waterways and eco-detergent which improves the quality of waste water and your skin.
WE CONSCIOUSLY POST
Our friends over at CourierPost focus on a number of initiatives to make their business more sustainable, such as moving to 100% electric delivery vehicles. You can read about it here.
WE CONSCIOUSLY PACK
We use New Zealand startup Grounded Packaging's compostable courier bags. These are certified under both Australasian and European standards for home composting – check them out here.
WE CONSCIOUSLY LABEL
We use The Better Packaging Co’s innovative compostable shipping labels. You’d be surprised by how many labels stuck to compostable bags aren’t actually compostable. Have a look here.
WE'RE POWERED RENEWABLY
We're keeping the lights on with Meridian Energy. The electricity Meridian deliver is generated from 100% renewable sources, including wind, water and the sun.
We use the Shopify app Offset, to pay a fee to offset the carbon that is omitted during transportation of products to our customers. In theory this means when you order something from Circular the delivery to you is carbon-neutral. The fee we pay goes to the Jarí Para REDD+ Avoided Unplanned Deforestation project with Pachama, which protects an area of the Amazon rainforest. Read more about it here.
WE’RE NOT PERFECT
We know we aren’t perfect. But we’re trying. We’re aware that we too are contributors to the insane number of clothing purchases made every year.
And when you’re trying to change the world, you can only do your best. We believe every business can do more to operate in harmony with the environment, and in doing our bit, we hope we inspire others to as well.