Eco-Friendly vs. Sustainable

Oz Designs and Manufacturing’s goal is to become a world-renowned supplier of high quality and eco-friendly products. We know that no manufacturing company is 100% eco-friendly. Yet we strive harder and harder each time to lessen our impact on the environment. At Oz Designs and Manufacturing, we have invested our time and focus on eco-friendly and sustainable materials. Our shareholders care for the environment. Clothing production is the world’s second largest environmental issue. We as a business want customers who share the same passion for the environment and are looking for products that are eco-friendly or sustainable.


What is Eco-Friendly?

According to a definition given by the website all-recycling-facts.com, eco-friendly products are “products that do not harm the environment whether in their production, use or disposal”. ... Eco-friendly products can be made from scratch, or from recycled materials. Therefore they are produced and discarded leaving no environmental damage.

What is sustainable?

Sustainable materials are materials used throughout our consumer and industrial economy that can be produced in required volumes without depleting non-renewable resources and without disrupting the established steady-state equilibrium of the environment and key natural resource systems. They are usually recycled or regenerated materials that lower carbon emissions and use none or less virgin material. Sustainable materials are good for the environment, however are not the same as Eco Friendly materials.


Printing: Sublimation vs. Screen Printing

Impact to the Worker & Environment: Dye-sublimation is the most environmentally friendly, sustainable process possible in garment printing and production. It produces ZERO ink waste and is low in emitting noise pollution. Because the process involves turning a solid directly to a gas, there is no water needed for dyeing. However it does require paper to transfer the inks. We use suitably sourced papers and all our paper is then recycled.Screen printing merely places a toxic non water soluble ink on top of the substrate whereas dye sublimation printing allows inks to permeate the fibers of the material. A screen printed image may crack in time, unlike a dye sublimated graphic print. To truly saturate the material with ink, dye sublimation is the best printing option.

The advantage of digital sublimation printing is that no screens are required, so it is ideal for customizing designs with changing elements such as names, numbers, etc. Sublimation is quick and easy to produce, allowing for same day or same hour printing, as well as on demand printing that reduces risk and wastage.

The screen process in screen printing uses toxic chemicals that are bad for the environment. Sublimation can only be done with polyester materials.If you are making many T-shirts, screen printing is a more cost-effective approach. Dye sublimation is better for small projects of just one or two T-shirts. The reason for this is because dye sublimation is more expensive and time-consuming. We offer screen printing with our partners but suggest clients to use eco-friendly chemicals in their inks.


Materials: Recycled Fibres vs. Natural Fibres

A sustainable option.

Recycled fibers are a more sustainable way of manufacturing. They can also be mixed with many natural fibers. However they are not as eco-friendly as natural fibers.

7 benefits to recycling

  • 1. Conserving natural resources
  • 2. Protecting ecosystems and wildlife
  • 3. Reduces demand for raw materials
  • 4. Saves energy
  • 5. Cuts climate-changing carbon emissions
  • 6. Cheaper than waste collection and disposal
  • 7. Creating jobs


If in doubt, remember those three Rs: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

According to a report, 86% of plastic water bottles used in US are dumped into the landfills. Around 60 million water bottles are daily used in US, which means approximately 18,834,000,000 are dumped in the landfills every year.

When one plastic bottle is recycled, one can save enough energy to light 60 watt bulb for six hours. As our environment is at risk and the world is becoming more eco-conscious, one can see a rise in the usage of recycled plastic fabrics for daily needs.

Besides, each plastic bottle can take up to 700 years to perish. The alarming rate at which the numbers of used plastic bottles are increasing in the landfills, pose high risk to the environment.

This process also consumes 30% less energy than garments which are made from conventionally manufactured polyester.

Moreover, the plastic spun thread can be blended with other fibres to create variety of clothing for every section of people.

Ref: https://www.fibre2fashion.com/industry-article/7296/green-clothing-from-recycled-plastic-bottles

Recycled Polyester

Pros: Keeping plastics from going to landfill and the ocean - Recycled polyester gives a second life to a material that’s not biodegradable and would otherwise end up in landfill or the ocean. According to the NGO Ocean Conservancy, 8 million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean every year, on top of the estimated 150 million metric tons that currently circulate in marine environments. If we keep this pace, by 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish. Plastic has been found in 60 percent of all seabirds and 100 percent of all sea turtle species, because they mistake plastic for food.

Cons: Recycled polyester releases microplastics - Last but not least, some counter argue the affirmation that rPET keeps plastic from reaching the ocean. It still does, as man-made fabrics can release microscopic plastic fibers -- the infamous microplastics. According to a recent study from Plymouth University, in the UK, each cycle of a washing machine can release more than 700,000 plastic fibers into the environment. A paper published in 2011 in the journal Environmental Science Technology found that microfibers made up 85 percent of human-made debris on shorelines around the world. It doesn’t matter if garments are from virgin or recycled polyester, they both contribute to microplastics pollution.

Recycling helps protect the environment

Recycling reduces the need for extracting (mining, quarrying and logging), refining and processing raw materials. All of these create substantial air and water pollution. As recycling saves energy it also reduces greenhouse gas emissions, which helps to tackle climate change.

REF: https://fashionunited.uk/news/fashion/how-sustainable-is-recycled-polyester/2018111540000


Majority of our Polyesters Use REPREVE® Recycled Materials


Fiber made from recycled plastic bottles...to do good.

Visit - https://repreve.com/

Billions of plastic bottles go into landfills every year. But now you can do something about it. REPREVE is the leading, most trusted, branded performance fiber made from recycled materials (including plastic bottles). Buy products made with REPREVE to make a difference. We're not just finding new life for recycled materials. Compared to making what's called virgin fiber, making REPREVE offsets using new petroleum, emitting fewer greenhouse gases and conserving water and energy in the process. That makes a big difference for our future.

Nylon is the most commonly used swimwear fabric after polyesters.

We use ECONYL® Regenerated Nylon

Visit - https://www.econyl.com/

ECONYL works with NGOs to turn discarded fishing nets into material. As well as regenerating nylon waste from other swimwear back into fabric.

As well as being a solution on waste, ECONYL® regenerated nylon is also better when it comes to climate change. It reduces the global warming impact of nylon by up to 90% compared with the material from oil.

Natural Fibres

What is natural fibre?

Until the turn of the twentieth century, the only fabrics available were the product of natural fibers. Whilst the development of synthetic fibers may have allowed people to purchase clothing faster and cheaply, it has inevitably come at a cost to the planet. We choose to use natural fibers because they are better both for people and the planet.

*Note the following must be organically grown with no harmful chemicals. They also must not use bleach or toxic dyes to be considered sustainable.

  • Cotton.
  • Silk.
  • Fur.
  • Jute.
  • Flax / Linen.
  • Wool.
  • Kapok.
  • Hemp.
  • Coconut husk.
  • Animal Fur.

What are some of the pros and cons of natural fibres for us as consumers?


  • Can discourage sweating by being naturally breathable
  • Often more comfortable against your skin
  • Fabrics often age well
  • People are less likely to have skin irritations


  • Might wear out quicker
  • Can be more expensive to buy
  • Often more difficult to care for (e.g. wool can felt, cotton and linen wrinkle easily and silk needs to be handled delicately)

While animal and plant fibres are biodegradable (subject to how they are processed) and renewable resources, the rate at which we produce and consume them (often resulting in overgrazing and extensive land use) is not sustainable.

Packaging: Degradable vs. Biodegradable

Biodegradable means that it can be broken down by living things like bacteria and fungi (these are microorganisms). Generally biodegradable will dissolve in water or when deprived of oxygen. Biodegradable is an eco-friendly product when it’s discarded.

Degradable means they do not require living organisms to break down and would need a facility to break them down. Degradable is not a sustainable product when it’s discarded.

We have two different plastic packing solutions.

D2W Technology: A Sustainable Option

Biodegradable d2w technology accelerates the natural process of oxidation until the product is no longer a plastic. A material which can be bio-assimilated (i.e. used as a food source) by bacteria and fungi on land or sea.

Best of all, if it escapes collection and ends up as litter in the environment, it will degrade and biodegrade. Significantly in a continuous, irreversible and unstoppable process until there is nothing left. In the same way as nature’s waste. As a result, leaving no toxic residues and no micro plastics.

It looks and feels like ordinary plastic.

In terms of strength, aesthetics, flexibility and optical properties.

Only 1% of d2w can make the difference.

Included at the manufacturing stage, at only 1% – means little or no extra costs.

It complies with international standards.

Biodegradable products are tested according to ASTMD6954 and other international standards.  They were found to be Degradable, Biodegradable and Non eco-toxic.

SASO and ESMA Approved

The first to be approved

It is non-disruptive

A drop-in technology,  so no need to change suppliers.

It is recyclable (Recycling)

d2w can be recycled with conventional polymer and can be made with recyclate.

As demonstrated by expert laboratories in Austria and South Africa

Suitable for food contact

According to FDA & EU food contact regulations.

No Toxic Residues and No Microplastics

Distinguished Lawyer, Peter Susman QC, finds the case for oxo-biodegradable plastic proven.

d2w® biodegradable plastic additive was the first technology of this
type to be awarded an internationally-recognised Eco-Label.



Water Soluble Bags: Aquasolit bags

Aquasolit is made from Polyvinyl alcohol (PVAL or PVOH) and starch, two biodegradable polymers. It is non-toxic and dissolves in water, however it is not soluble in oils, fats or organic alcohols like ethanol. Aquasolit is the best alternative to conventional plastic, because of its great properties:

  • Water Soluble
  • Biodegradable
  • Compostable
  • Heat Sealable
  • Non-Toxic
  • Resistant
  • Anti-Static
  • Light in Weight
  • Optimum Tensile Strength and Flexibility

*Aquasolit is better than D2W as it dissolves much faster leaving less risk to marine life.

For more information on how we can supply or assist with more sustainable or eco-friendly manufacturing, please reach out to us.


James O’Donnell
Managing Director, james@ozdesignschina.com