Sustainability of Textiles

A third and emerging theme of our research is in the area of sustainability and the environmental impact of textiles. We have focused on the sustainability of textiles during consumer use and laundering. There is a connection here to research on odour and textiles. Odour build-up in clothing is one reason people launder their clothing more frequently than they may otherwise. They may also discard clothing before it has otherwise worn out (e.g., degradation through abrasion and/or loss of colour) due to an accumulation of body odours in clothing fabrics. This intensifies the amount of post-consumer waste, increases energy and water use and takes a further toll on the environment.


Related Publications

Degenstein, L., McQueen, R. H., McNeill, L., Hamlin, R., Wakes, S., and Dunn, L. (2020). Impact of physical condition on disposal and end-of-life extension of clothing. International Journal of Consumer Studies, 44(6), 586-596. DOI: 10.1111/ijcs.12590.

McNeill, L. S., Hamlin, R. P., McQueen, R. H., Degenstein, L., Wakes, S., Garrett, T. C., & Dunn, L. (2020). Waste not want not: Behavioural intentions toward garment life extension practices, the role of damage, brand and cost on textile disposal. Journal of Cleaner Production, 260. 121026. DOI: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2020.121026

McQueen, R., Kowton, J., & Degenstein, L. Smell and sustainability: Can odour shorten the life span of clothing? In L. McNeill (Ed)., Transitioning to Sustainability: Transitioning to Responsible Consumption and Production. (pp. 130-152). MDPI: Basel, Switzerland.

McNeill, L., Hamlin, R., McQueen, R. H., Degenstein, L., Garrett, T., Dunn, L., and Wakes, S. Fashion sensitive young consumers and fashion garment repair: Emotional connections to garments as a sustainability strategy. International Journal of Consumer Studies, 44(4), 361-368. doi:

McQueen, R. H., Moran, L. J., Cunningham, C., Hooper, P. M. & Wakefield, K. A-M. (2020). The impact of odour on laundering behaviour: An exploratory study. International Journal of Fashion Design Technology and Education, 13(1): 20-30.  doi: 10.1080/17543266.2019.1682687.

McQueen, R. H., Batcheller, J. C., Moran, L. J., Zhang, H., & Hooper, P. M. (2017). Reducing laundering frequency to prolong the life of denim jeans. International Journal of Consumer Studies, 41(1), 36-45.