Real-Life Invisibility Cloak Claims to Make Soldiers Virtually Undetectable

by , 12/14/12   filed under: Wearable Technology

Quantum Stealth, Hyperstealth Technology, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Guy Cramer, military uniforms, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable fashion, sustainable style

A Canadian camouflage-design company claims to be developing a real-life invisibility cloak that causes its wearer to vanish in plain sight. Likening its “Quantum Stealth” technology to Harry Potter’s magical coverup, the British Columbia-based Hyperstealth Biotechnology says the material tricks the human eye by bending light around a person or object. Although the firm has provided only “mockups” in lieu of proof of concept—CEO Guy Cramer says he cannot show the actual technology for security reasons—the company insists it has the backing of both the U.S. Pentagon and the Canadian military.

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Levi's Commits to Detoxing Its Products, Garment Supply Chain by 2020

Detox, eco-fashion, eco-friendly denim, eco-friendly jeans, ethical fashion, Gap, green fashion, Greenpeace, Levi Strauss, Levi’s, sustainable denim, Sustainable Fashion, sustainable jeans, sustainable style, toxic chemicals, toxic pollution, Toxic Threads

Squeaky wheel, meet grease. After a week of relentless campaigning by Greenpeace’s “Detox” initiative, Levi Strauss has finally committed to eliminating all releases of hazardous chemicals from its products and supply chain by 2020. The world’s largest denim brand announced Thursday that it will require 15 of its largest suppliers in China, Mexico, and elsewhere in the Global South to disclose pollution data as early as June of next year. Another 25 major suppliers will follow suit by the end of 2013, providing communities living in or around discharge sites with crucial data about pollution in their local environment. Levi’s has also promised to ban alkylphenol ethoxylates (APEOs), which scientists describe as “highly toxic” to aquatic life, as well as replace all perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) with fluorine-free alternatives by the end of 2015.

PREVIOUSLY ON ECOUTERE: Levi’s, Major Denim Brands Embroiled in Mexican Water-Pollution Scandal

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14 Eco-Friendly—And Vegan!—Women's Sweaters to Chase the Chill

by , 12/13/12   filed under: Women's Eco-Fashion

 

Flexible Fiber-Optic Solar Cell Paves Way for Energy-Generating Fabrics

by , 12/12/12   filed under: Solar Fashion, Wearable Technology

fiber optics, John Badding, Pennsylvania State University, solar fashion, solar clothing, solar power, wearable technology, energy generation, energy-generating clothing, energy-generating clothes, energy-generating textiles, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style

Photo by Shutterstock

An international team of scientists have developed the world’s first fiber-optic solar cell. Thinner than the width of a human hair and scalable to many meters in length, the silicon-based wire opens the possibility of a new generation of flexible fabrics capable of converting solar radiation into direct-current electricity. The group’s findings, which were published in the December 6 issue of Advanced Materials, expand upon earlier attempts to combine optical fibers with electronic chips. Although many attempts have been made to integrate photovoltaic technology into clothing, traditional components tend to be rigid and unyielding.

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Suno Makes World's Cutest Ethical Pajamas in New York City

by , 12/11/12   filed under: Eco-Fashion Brands, Women's Eco-Fashion

Suno, eco-friendly pajamas, sustainable pajamas, New York City, New York, made in the U.S.A., eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, fair-trade fashion, fair-trade clothing, fair trade

Remember when Tinseltown’s finest tried to make wearing your jammies in public a thing? If there’s one brand that could convince us to go full-on Hugh Hefner, it’s Suno. Ethically made in New York City, the Africa-influenced label’s limited-edition pajamas come in no less than six of its best-selling prints. Both cotton and silk versions feature long-sleeve, notched-collar button-downs and coordinating wide-leg pants with contrast piping. We suddenly feel very sleepy…

+ Pajamas $165-$175

+ Suno

 

"Good Morning America" Finds Traces of Lead in 55 Percent of Lipsticks

by , 12/11/12   filed under: Eco-Friendly Beauty, The Big Idea

Good Morning America, lead, eco-friendly lipsticks, sustainable lipsticks, Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, toxic chemicals, toxic cosmetics, toxic pollution, eco-beauty, green beauty, eco-friendly beauty, sustainable beauty, natural beauty

Photo by Shutterstock

A swipe of a red lipstick may have a transformative effect like no other, but could your signature crimson pucker be responsible for less-than-desirable changes, as well? A recent investigation by Good Morning America revealed that 12 of 22 of lipstick samples—or 55 percent—contained trace amounts of lead, some as high as 3.22 part per million. Lead is a potent neurotoxin that can cause learning, behavioral, and other problems, but even the worst offenders aren’t guilty of anything illegal. Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration suggests a lead limit of 0.1 parts per million for candy, the cosmetics industry isn’t beholden to any such threshold outside of California. (The Golden State recommends a maximum of 5 parts per million.) And because lead is considered an “unintended” byproduct of the manufacturing process, cosmetics manufacturers aren’t required to declare it on their ingredient labels.

Should cosmetics firms give lead in lipstick the kiss-off?

  • 2 Votes HELL NO! Lead is an insignificant byproduct of manufacturing lipstick.
  • 152 Votes HELL YES! If it's possible to make lipstick without lead, what's the hold-up?

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Levi's, Major Denim Brands Embroiled in Mexican Water-Pollution Scandal

by , 12/11/12   filed under: Eco-Fashion News, The Big Idea, Toxic Pollution

Levi's, Levi Strauss, Detox, Greenpeace, eco-friendly denim, sustainable denim, eco-friendly jeans, sustainable jeans, Gap, toxic pollution, toxic chemicals, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, Toxic Threads

Levi Strauss may have pioneered the “Water<less” and “Waste<less” lines of denim, but the jean icon is far from a paragon of sustainability, according to a new report from Greenpeace. In its first investigation of textile manufacturers in Mexico, one of the largest producers of denim in the world, the environmental nonprofit discovered a wide range of hazardous chemicals in the wastewater of two of the nation’s biggest factories: Lavamex in Aguascalientes and Kaltex in San Juan del Río, Queretaro. Some of the planet’s top-selling denim purveyors have current or recent relationships with the facilities, including Levi’s, Calvin Klein, Guess, Gap, Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy, and Walmart.

PREVIOUSLY ON ECOUTERRE: Greenpeace Exposes Toxic Chemicals in Zara, Other Fast-Fashion Brands

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Mango, Esprit Pledge to Eliminate Toxic Chemicals From Clothing by 2020

by , 12/08/12   filed under: Eco-Fashion News, Toxic Pollution

Esprit, Mango, Greenpeace, toxic chemicals, toxic pollution, Zara, Victoria's Secret, Marietta Harjono, Gap, PFCs, phthalates, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, Detox

Greenpeace’s “Detox” campaign is having a banner month. Not only did the environmental nonprofit convince Zara, the world’s No. 1 apparel retailer, to commit to eliminating hazardous chemicals from its supply chain by 2020, but it also obtained similar pledges from two other leading high-street brands this past week alone. Following public pressure in response to Greenpeace Toxic Threads report, which pilloried the garment industry for poisoning the world’s waterways with hormone-disrupting substances, Hong Kong-owned Esprit and Spain’s Mango have both agreed to work towards the goal of zero discharge of chemicals like alkylphenol ethoxylates, perfluorinated compounds, phthalates, brominated and chlorinated flame-retardants, AZO dyes, and heavy metals such as cadmium, lead, mercury, and chromium (VI).

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Disgruntled Sweatshop Worker Allegedly Behind Chinese Factory Fire

by , 12/07/12   filed under: Eco-Fashion News, Worker Rights

Liu Shuangyun, Guangdong, China, workers rights, human rights, sweatshops, sweatshop workers, sweatshop labor, forced labor, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style

A fire at an undergarment factory in southern China killed 14 workers on Tuesday, all of them young women between the ages of 18 and 20. Chinese state media reports quote a former worker who said he torched the facility because he was upset over several hundred dollars in owed wages. Liu Shuangyun, the alleged arsonist, told the Guangdong TV broadcaster in a jailhouse interview on Wednesday that he “couldn’t get [his] salary,” which remained unpaid despite his quitting the factory three years ago. “The whole time, I’ve been very impulsive, very angry about this,” Liu said during the television interview. “So I did these things.”

PREVIOUSLY ON ECOUTERRE: 10 Biggest Excuses For Not Paying a Living Wage (And Why They Suck)

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Walmart Wouldn't Pay for Bangladesh Factory Safety Improvements

Walmart Wouldn't Pay for Bangladesh Factory Safety Improvements

Walmart play a lead role in blocking a proposal to have global retailers help their Bangladesh suppliers improve their electrical and fire safety, according to the minutes of a meeting…

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H&M Becomes First Fashion Company to Launch Global Clothes-Recycling

H&M Becomes First Fashion Company to Launch Global Clothes-Recycling

Is H&M doing some damage control? Not long after a Swedish broadcast accused the fast-fashion giant of facilitating sweatshop-like conditions overseas, H&M has reaffirmed its…

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Patagonia Unveils World's First Renewable, Plant-Based Wetsuit

Patagonia Unveils World's First Renewable, Plant-Based Wetsuit

Did you ever think you’d be wearing plants while hanging ten? Outdoor adventurist brand Patagonia has been making strides with their experimentation with eco-friendly wetsuits.…

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Could Vuzix's Smart "Eyepatch" Give Google Glass a Run for Its Money?

Could Vuzix's Smart "Eyepatch" Give Google Glass a Run for Its Money?

Google isn’t the only one trying to make smart glasses the next hot device trend. New York-based Vuzix has just unveiled a hands-free smart device that comes with an integrated…

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Sprout Watches: Cool Watches for a Cool Planet

Sprout Watches: Cool Watches for a Cool Planet

Because your passion for eco-friendly products shouldn’t stop at fashion, Sprout Watches gives you an eco-timepiece to add to your green wardrobe. After 50 years of making…

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Labor Secretary on Bangladesh Fire: "Things Can't Return to Biz as Usual"

Labor Secretary on Bangladesh Fire: "Things Can't Return to Biz as Usual"

U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis has extended her condolences to the people of Bangladesh after a deadly garment-factory blaze killed 112 workers in Dhaka late November. In a news…

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Asha Headscarves Promise Therapeutic Relief for Chemotherapy Patients

Asha Headscarves Promise Therapeutic Relief for Chemotherapy Patients

A Scottish textile company has developed a range of luxury headscarves designed to help cancer patients cope with the debilitating effects of chemotherapy. More than a way to conceal…

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LUSH Cosmetics Awards $400,000 to Innovators in Cruelty-Free Research

LUSH Cosmetics Awards $400,000 to Innovators in Cruelty-Free Research

Animal rights received a big financial shot in the arm this November when LUSH Cosmetics announced the recipients of the first-ever LUSH Prize to eliminate animal testing. Created by…

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H&M, Brick Lane Bikes Launch Eco-Friendly Men's Urban Cycling Collection

H&M, Brick Lane Bikes Launch Eco-Friendly Men's Urban Cycling Collection

BORN TO RIDE “We are extremely excited about the H&M for Brick Lane Bikes collection,” says Feya Buchwald, founder of Brick Lane Bikes, in a press release. “Working…

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