There are lots of ways to distress jeans. Sandblasting, however, is a dangerous method that involves using compressed air and blasting grit to wear away colour from the fabric. The work is very dangerous because employees may inhale sand particles into their lungs, which can cause a lung disease called silicosis. For this reason, Gina Tricot forbids the use of sandblasting.
Since 2010, our supplier contracts stipulate that the use of sandblasting is prohibited. This requirement applies to any subcontractors used by our suppliers as well.
Requirements are one thing, but we also want our suppliers to understand why we forbid the use of this method. It can be difficult to tell whether a pair of jeans has been sandblasted, or whether a different method was used. That's why we follow up on the manufacturing methods that our suppliers have access to.
There are many methods used for distressing jeans. You can use sandpaper, lasers, washing and/or chemicals. In Turkey, our largest purchasing market for jeans, we prohibited the use of sandblasting in 2009. But, it still exists in other manufacturing countries because it is a relatively cheap and quick method for the supplier. There is also a lack of knowledge about how dangerous the method is. We hope that there will be a global ban so that this method is no longer used in any jeans manufacturing processes.