Did you know you can reproof your cycling jacket to keep it effective on rides for longer? Well, according to outdoor clothing aftercare solution experts Grangers, one in two people stopped wearing a waterproof jacket because it no longer kept them dry, so that would put it as a 50/50 chance your answer would have been a 'no'.
The Derbyshire-based brand, who sell a range of waterproofing, washing and care products for outdoor clothing and footwear, conducted its 2021 Wear and Care Survey over 12 months from February 2020 to February 2021. It received up to 2,300 respondents, which would have included plenty of cyclists as well as other outdoor enthusiasts.
Grangers’ ‘Wear + Care Survey’ is the brand’s call to action on how we can all live more sustainably given its findings. “This piece of research is a first for the outdoor industry, there is currently limited information on consumers’ wear and care habits and how sustainability and environmental responsibility influence purchasing decisions,” notes Grangers.
The average lifespan of a waterproof jacket was found to be 5.88 years in this survey, with the highest jacket life expectancy rising up to 6.05 years for those that had washed and reproofed their clothing.
Given the most expensive cycling jackets can cost well into the hundreds of pounds, it’s handy that reproofing can increase the lifespan.
The survey found that 66% of people had reproofed their jacket, while only 28% felt “somewhat confident” in reproofing a waterproof.
Grangers’ survey also revealed one in five throw away waterproofs after use instead of recycling or donating, despite 70% responding that sustainability was ‘very important’ or ‘extremely important’ when buying outdoor clothing and equipment.
While there is a lot clothing brands can be doing to reduce their impact on the environment - by choosing recycled fabrics, reducing waste, producing durable products etc - there’s a difference we can all make. Keeping the product in use for longer by repairing it (or sending it in for repair) and reproofing when it has lost its water repellency can make a difference, as well as washing only when needed (especially if the product is odour-resistance and requires less washing) and only buying products you really need.
Grangers’ survey found that 83% of respondents owned more than one jacket, and 44% wore their waterproof once a week over the past 12 months.
Grangers itself has developed the world's first water-based waterproofing solution as part of its sustainability initiatives - you can find out more on the Grangers website.
Anna has been hooked on bikes ever since her youthful beginnings at Hillingdon Cycle Circuit. As an avid road and track racer, she reached the heady heights of a ProCyclingStats profile before leaving for university. Having now completed an MA in Multimedia Journalism, she’s hoping to add some (more successful) results. Although her greatest wish is for the broader acceptance of wearing funky cycling socks over the top of leg warmers.