What's the Story with Recycled Polyester? Cyndi Rhoades from Worn Again Explains All

More than half of all the textiles use today are polyester. You will definitely have poly in your wardrobe, even if you prefer natural fibres. Synthetics are lurking everywhere, whether as polyester, nylon, or blends mixed with cotton. Poly is cheap, ubiquitous and it's not going away any time soon. It's also made from fossil fuels, doesn't biodegrade and most of it ends up as waste.

Cyndi Rhoades believes recycled is the answer.

A UK-based, US-raised activist turned entrepreneur, she founded Worn Again Technologies (originally called Worn Again) in 2005 - determined to make a difference and create a business out of solving the challenge of textiles ending up in landfill or incineration.

Initially, she looked to upcycling. “It was really hard it make it work at scale, but also ultimately we weren’t solving the problem of textile waste," she says. "Once these second-life products were used, they would end up in landfill anyway. So we were only postponing textiles going to landfill. It made us realise that recycling at a molecular level was the solution.”

From her formative days in London's early 2000s sustainable fashion scene, to living on a barge off-the-grid today, Cyndi has a long view on how this space has evolved and what's coming next.

Ever wondered how virgin polyester is actually made? Did you know the recycled kind is almost always made from recycled plastic bottles, not textiles? How sustainable is it? How do we decide? It is greenwashing? Can we really make fashion circular? What would that look like? Why is it taking so damn long? This Episode is like a masterclass in material-to-material recycling.

Head over to https://thewardrobecrisis.com/podcast/2021/10/16/ep-151-whats-the-story-with-recycled-polyester-cyndi-rhoades-from-worn-again-explains-all to read yours and #bethechange

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