Lanyards and the Environment

Lanyards and the environment

As the issue of climate change has rightly become a hot topic recently with the fast-increasing warming of our planet, many customers are beginning to choose more eco-friendly options when shopping for products. This is beginning to have an impact on businesses that are not so environmentally orientated. As more and more people are turning to recyclable resources, it is important for businesses to recognize some corporate responsibility, not only to reduce their impact on the earth, but so customers are not turned away by poor environmental practices. When it comes to lanyards; many companies, including here at Only Lanyards, offer eco-friendly types of material. This is beneficial for businesses that want to associate their brand with being kind to the environment and responsible on matters of climate change. There are two common forms of eco-friendly material used for making lanyards, Recycled PET or Bamboo fibre. Both provide an environmentally responsible solution for businesses looking to improve their carbon footprint.

Recycled PET

PET or Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) to give its full scientific name! Is a highly recyclable plastic resin and a form of polyester. This is because it is a polymer created by the combination of two monomers: modified ethylene glycol and purified terephthalic acid. Although that won’t mean much to the average person, we all actually handle PET on a regular basis. It is used for a variety of household products and containers such as bottles, jars, and cosmetics. This is due to it being lightweight yet sturdy with good thermo-stability. The fact that is both recyclable and inexpensive has made PET an ideal solution for packaging.

If you see RPET, this simply stands for recycled polyethylene terephthalate. Because PET is a recyclable material, once it has been reused and is no longer in its original state, it is then known as RPET. It is also the most widely recycled plastic in the world. Although in order to properly utilise the sustainability and environmental benefits of PET, populations and businesses need to be recycling as much as possible. Europe has a PET recyclable rate of 52% but that is still only just over half.

PET can be recycled repeatedly by washing and remelting for use in new products, this includes clothing fabric, carpets, upholstery and yes, you guessed it! Lanyards! And because any PET that is unsuitable for recycling due to contamination that cannot be thoroughly cleaned, can be safely and efficiently burned as an energy source, (also known as thermal recycling,) it makes it an excellent eco-friendly choice of material.

When lanyards are made from recycled PET, it has a similar look and feel to lanyards made from flat polyester, so there really isn’t a noticeable difference, other than the one made to the planet. It comes in at slightly more expensive than the flat polyester lanyards, around a pound more per 50 units, but a small price to pay for the positive impact on your brand and environment.

Bamboo Fibre

Bamboo fabric has often been touted as the most eco-friendly fabric in the world. This is mostly because Bamboo, which is a type of tropical grass, has an extensive rooting system that grows on average four to six new shoots a year, so can quickly replenish any loss and as with any plant, provide usable oxygen in the battle against growing carbon dioxide levels.

To make Bamboo fabric,  an enzyme is used on crushed bamboo grass and pulped to create fibres. These fibres are then washed, spun into yarn, or dyed ready to be turned into fabric. There are a surprising number of benefits to Bamboo fabric, For example, the cross-section of bamboo fibre is covered with tiny gaps, making the fabric extremely breathable. It is also easy to weave this fabric into textiles that have high thread counts, and although it is thinner, it is quite strong and stretchier than cotton so is often used for items where cotton would normally be used. It is also incredibly soft, much more akin to the feeling of silk. Since the fibres are not treated with chemicals, they are naturally smoother and rounder than other fabrics and less irritating to the skin, making bamboo fabric hypoallergenic and a useful alternative for those who experience allergic or skin irritant reactions to other natural fibres such as wool.

It is often said that bamboo fabric contains anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. This is because bamboo contains an antibacterial agent that allows it to naturally flourish and grow in the wild without the use of pesticides or fertilisers, adding to the environmental qualities of this type of fabric. However, though the anti-bacterial properties in bamboo is a proven fact, there is no evidence to suggest this can transfer over to fabric and clothing.

If you are looking for a lanyard that is from a sustainable source without compromising on the feel of your material, then Bamboo fabric is an excellent choice. Similar in price to PET, but with a silkier finish, you can get quality without compromising on your green credentials.


Whichever recyclable or reusable material you choose, you can still customise your lanyards with your own branding or design. It is printed in the same fashion as other screen-printed lanyards, and can be pantone matched to your requirements, as can the print. Both types are washable and remarkably durable, adding to their environmental credentials. Eco friendly lanyards can also be fitted with all styles of clips and accessories.

So, if you’re thinking of ordering some eco-friendly lanyards and have any further questions about the environmental impact, longevity, or price, or even if you have a specific timescale, then contact us at Only Lanyards today and we can help you find the right solution for your needs.