In this 21st century of convenience, we often tend to look over the cost our wants and needs leave behind. One such convenience that we have taken for granted is tissues, which considering the carbon footprint awareness we are enveloped in, should've been discontinued eons ago. Let us tell you why.
According to Statista, "Revenue in the Tissue & Hygiene Paper market amounts to ₹1,955,535m in 2021. The market is expected to grow annually by 4.68% (CAGR 2021-2025)."
This increase in demand for softer tissues entails the chopping down of 27,000 trees in a day, amounting to 1 crore trees being cut every year. And all for what? So we could dump this paper-made tissue in the trash which we have barely used!
Let's look at some of the disadvantages that tissues bestow on us:
- Increased production of tissues contributes to heavy deforestation. According to WWF, “The pulp and paper industry which includes products such as office and catalog paper, glossy paper, tissue and paper-based packaging, uses over 40 percent of all industrial wood traded globally.”
- Once a tissue gets wet, it cannot be used again, leading to more scrap.
- Processed with bleach, tissues can cause excessive irritation on the skin, leading to more skin-related issues.
- A single-use tissue can be a carrier of germs when disposed of in open trash cans and public areas.
- Tissues contribute to the prevalent issue of littering.
- One tissue doesn't feel enough to ensure cleanliness so more are used in place of one, leading to wasteful consumption.
A collective plan of action
The only earth-friendly alternative to tissues is the old-fashioned handkerchiefs. Handkerchiefs can be easily carried anywhere and unlike disposable tissues, can be washed and reused multiple times. Brownie points to handkerchiefs as they can be made sustainably and ethically while harboring a longevity that hurts neither the planet nor your wallet.
To discourage the use of issues, Mulmul has come up with a conscious initiative of sending out cotton handkerchiefs with every order on the occasion of World Environmental Day.
To bear testimony to how responsible handkerchiefs are as an alternative, Mulmul is making them from scraps to further promote zero waste. Moreover, to promote livelihood and women's empowerment, the handkerchiefs will be manufactured by women living in a small town in Uttar Pradesh called Purannagar.
As a conscious fashion label, this initiative is our way of honoring the communities and planet we live in.