Whether you prefer wood, plastic, or wire, not a ton of deep thought goes into the awfully mundane task of buying new clothes hangers — at least in this household. Cheap functionality is usually top priority, not saving the planet.

Enter British inventor Nick Lewis and his company, Hanger4Life, where the innocuous plastic clothes hanger helps consumers live a more carbon-friendly life. Say what? Adjustable Eco Hangers, the signature product produced by Hanger4Life, are carbon neural. Impossible you say? Here's what Lewis has up his sleeves:

Made with virtually indestructible ABS plastic, Adjustable Eco Hangers aren't a throwaway product — they're tough enough to last a lifetime and, as advertised, they're completely adjustable so that there's no need to toss 'em if you and your family grows (or shrinks) in the clothing department.

Okay, so how can a durable plastic product be carbon neutral? Adjustable Eco Hangers are the result of an efficient manufacturing and minimal packaging process that Lewis claims produces 40 percent less carbon than standard manufacturing processes. For what carbon is generated by the production of Adjustable Eco Hangers, trees are planted. All and all, Lewis believes — based on figures that 40 billion hangers are used around the world yearly — that his humble hangers will prevent the emission of 6.5 million tons of C02 annually, the same as removing 1.5 million cars from the road. 

Lewis explains to The Guardian:

I wanted a solution for retailers and people at home. With retailers we know there's massive impact from supply chains and moving clothes all over the world that dents their eco credentials, but I can't begin to control these elements. Most people wouldn't think that hangers make a difference, but this is the bit that I can do something about – and when you look at how many we use, it adds up to something significant. 
Adjustable Eco Hangers are sold in six-packs for approximately $7.50 (kids) and $10.50 (adults). For American consumers, the one not-so-carbon-neutral caveat has to do with overseas shipping as it appears that Adjustable Eco Hangers are only available in the UK at the moment (via Amazon.co.uk). If Adjustable Eco Hangers were available readily outside of the UK, would you invest?

Via [InventorSpot], [The Guardian] via [Re-Nest]

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Adjustable Eco Hangers: The first step to a carbon neutral closet?
The owner of Hanger4Life hopes to halt the emission of 6.5 million tons of CO2 annually with a new line of plastic clothes hangers. Yep, plastic clothes hanger