Vinyl Footprint: Five Ways To Be A More Eco-Friendly Record Collector

From our friends at Naked Record Club...

The ongoing vinyl resurgence has put air into the lungs of record shops, helping to boost the creative eco-system that music thrives on.

There are, however, some obvious drawbacks: the music industry's plastic use is a problem, and contributes to broader environmental industries across the globe.

Greenpeace and Everyday Plastic venture The Big Plastic Count aims to help us all take stock of the plastic we use in our lives, encouraging each of us to look again at our environmental footprint.

Clash hosted a special Twitter spaces discussion on Friday – April 8th – alongside broadcaster and activist Chris Packham, joined by Tim Burgess, a representative from Greenpeace, and podcaster / journalist Greg Cochrane.

Naked Record Club team Simon Parker and Rachel Lowe also took part, showcasing their plan to produce an eco-friendly alternative to standard vinyl production, using a 99% carbon neutral factory in the Netherlands.

The vinyl contains non-toxic mineral additives instead of toxic chemicals, making Naked Record Club an industry-leading alternative in record production.

Following the discussion, Naked Record Club sent across their guide to becoming a more eco-friendly record collector…

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1. Never play vinyl on a record player which costs LESS than the record itself!

With the advent of cheap, portable record players there has been a huge rise in the number of records being scratched by inferior player-arms and nasty needles skidding across the grooves. There's a number of reasons why that portable player you've been looking at is cheap and not one of them is good…

Record players haven't changed much for decades, it's far better to get a second hand turntable, amp and speakers than a cheap all-in-one.

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2. Always make sure the stylus (or needle) on your record player is in good condition…

Experts say you should change the needle after every 1000 hours of playtime. In other words, that's about every two years if you use your turntable for about an hour a day. You can't always see when it needs replacing but if the sound quality suddenly drops then it's definitely time to change. A decent record player and stylus combo should see your records lasting for decades.


Many of us are still listening to vintage albums that are older than we are…

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3. Store your records with care and keep your fingers off!

Make sure to keep your fingers off the records, hold them on the outer edges or run-out groove. – Use lint-free cloths to clean with and promptly put records back in their sleeves!

This will keep your vinyl free of grease and particles of fluff and dust thus ensuring minimal 'bumps' and 'jumps'. The 'crackle' people talk about nostalgically shouldn't be there, it is the sound of dirt!

And never serve pizza off of a 12" record. Oh yes, we've seen it done…

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4. Records don’t enjoy sunbathing and don’t need a plastic jacket!

Never store your records in direct sunlight or near household heating such as radiators or hot water pipes. – The easiest way to destroy vinyl is to introduce it to heat. Records will warp very quickly. So choose your storage area wisely and keep your records upright and out of the way of pets, babies and disgruntled lovers… Should you buy vinyl in summertime do not take it to the beach for a 'day out'. Yep, we've seen that done too.

And don't put it in a nasty PVC plastic bag, there's really no need for them (unless you are a heavy smoker or live in a pigsty) and PVC bags can cause condensation and damage in a damp environment.

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5. Demand change!

Start asking your favourite artists if they are going to release their next album on eco-friendly vinyl. If we don't demand change now it will be too late.

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For more information on the world’s first eco-friendly vinyl record club visit For more on The Big Plastic Count click HERE.

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