We’ve created a guide so you can learn more about the fibres in our Primark Cares products and some of the key terms linked to our ambitions in this space.
A definition inspired by our partner the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, circular products are made from recycled or more sustainably sourced materials and designed with the future in mind – meaning they have a longer lifespan when in use and can be recycled into new materials or clothes at end-of-life.
Recyclable by design
Clothing designed for the possibility that it can be recycled into new clothes or into new fibres when it reaches end-of-life. For example, that might mean making products from one single fibre, or making trims (like buttons) easily removeable.
Durable / Durability
Primark sees durability as the amount of wear or use that a consumer can get from a product over a period of time. An item of clothing is durable if it remains functional and wearable without requiring too much maintenance or repair, when faced with the challenges of normal wash and wear over its lifetime.
To give clothing another life, whether it's reworked into something new in your wardrobe, given to a friend, donated to charity, or sold on a second-hand platform.
When a garment reaches end-of-wear.
Restyling or customising clothing using techniques like sewing, dyeing, or crafting to give it a new look.
Vintage, second-hand or re-loved clothing that has been owned before but still has plenty of wear.
Mending an item to bring it back to a usable state.
Is a scheme run by certain retailers, like Primark, where used clothes can be donated by a consumer which are then sorted by a textile recycling
The metal pieces that reinforce an area on a garment, usually jeans, that gets a lot of pull or wear. You’ll typically notice them near the openings of pockets. They help reinforce the multiple layers and hold them up through wear, but can be removed through smart design.
Trims on clothing are elements that are added to the main garment. They can have functional use, like buttons, zips or waistbands, or can be added for aesthetic reasons.
A piece of fabric which can be seen on the inside of your garment to create a pocket.
Interlinings are generally materials that add more structure and body to garment components like collars, waistbands, and cuffs.
Zero waste pattern cutting
The clever use of space through the pattern cutting process, creating a product that uses 99-100% of the fabric or avoids waste altogether.
Designing clothes using interchangeable parts that can be disassembled into different parts and then reassembled. This design strategy can also support repairability, remanufacturing and recycling.
A step further from physical durability, emotional durability is the attachment felt by the wearer of an item of clothes over time. With high emotional durability; the item is more likely to be cared for, re-worn and repaired over time.
The use of 3D Computer Aided Design (CAD) technology to create digital samples instead of physical samples through the clothing development process. This ultimately reduces the need for physical samples and reduces the carbon footprint associated with transporting and making them.
Ensuring the clothing has more than one use and can be styled in many ways, helping to extend its life. This will allow the garment to be used for different occasions and functions or by multiple users.
More sustainable packaging
|We’re committed to using more sustainably sourced materials in the manufacture of our packaging and eliminating packaging where it’s not necessary. Find out more here.|
|Fibre||Description||Which products are typically made from this at Primark?|
|Plant-derived fibres (Definition: Fibres which are sourced and harvested directly from plants)|
Cotton is a soft fibre grown on cotton plants. The organic cotton used in Primark product is certified to a universally recognised high standard (either Organic Content Standard (OCS) or Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) and is grown using methods that help to reduce the impact on the environment.
Cotton from the Primark Sustainable Cotton Programme
|This cotton comes from our own sustainable cotton programme, the biggest of its kind of any fashion retailer. The programme trains farmers to grow cotton using more sustainable farming methods, which helps to reduce environmental impact and improves their livelihoods. You can find out more about our Sustainable Cotton Programme here.|
Recycled materials (Definition: Materials which would otherwise have been thrown away are collected and turned into new materials)
Recycled cotton is made using cotton fabric waste which is spun into new fibres. Recycled cotton used in Primark product is certified to a universally recognised high standard; either the Recycled Content Standard (RCS) or the Global Recycled Standard (GRS).
Acrylic is a man-made fibre. Recycled acrylic is made using acrylic fabric waste which is spun into new fibres. Recycled acrylic used in Primark product is certified to a universally recognised high standard; either the Recycled Content Standard (RCS) or the Global Recycled Standard (GRS).
Recycled polyamide (nylon)
Polyamide is a man-made fibre, often called nylon. Recycled polyamide used in Primark product is certified to a universally recognised high standard; either the Recycled Content Standard (RCS) or the Global Recycled Standard (GRS).
Polyester is a man-made fibre. Recycled polyester used in Primark product is certified to a universally recognised high standard; either the Recycled Content Standard (RCS) or the Global Recycled Standard (GRS).
Recycled metals used at Primark include zinc, steel, brass and iron. These are certified to a universally recognised high standard; either the Recycled Content Standard (RCS) or the Global Recycled Standard (GRS).
|More sustainably sourced materials (Definition: materials in which efforts are made to help reduce environmental impact)|
More sustainable lyocell, modal and viscose
Sustainable lyocell, modal and viscose are fibres made using the cellulose found in wood. To protect ancient forests and their biodiversity, the wood used to make these fibres is sourced from responsibly managed forests.