Fast Fashion: Money Maker, Environmental Waste
Fast Fashion has been a common phrase that has been thrown around lately. It causes many to wonder what fast fashion is. GoodOnYou, an ethical lifestyle and fashion blog, defines fast fashion as, "cheap, trendy clothing, that samples ideas from the catwalk or celebrity culture and turns them into garments in high street stores at breakneck speed". These are stores such as H&M, Forever 21, and Zara. This sounds great, in theory, because we have multiple options to turn to before having to shell out large amounts of money for designer items. Instead we are regularly able to purchase cheap clothing that guarantees that our outfits are consistently trendy.
In Reality, it is an incredibly wasteful practice.The desire that fast fashion creates to constantly be on trend also pushes us to throw out more of our clothes. Globally we consume about 80 billion new pieces of clothing annually which is 400% more than we used to two decades ago. Most clothes are made using outrageous amounts of oil, about 70 million barrels annually. Not to mention the shocking amount of water used to make just one piece of clothing. The average cotton t-shirt and pair of jeans in your closet used about 20,000 liters of water. We recommend to watch Hasan Minhaj's episode of the Patriot Act on fast fashion to gain more insight on this wasteful and exploitative industry!
So, what are some alternatives to the fast fashion industry? The first alternative that we recommend is to make purchase from brands who's clothing and textiles are ethically sourced. There are many fashion blogs, such as GoodOnYou, that list many fashion brands that fit any price range and don't worry, the clothes are just as trendy! The second alternative is to stick to shopping at thrift stores. This greatly reduces your annual clothing consumption which reduces your carbon footprint! And last but not least, consider repurposing or upcycling your old clothing and fabrics into new fashion! Check out our Pinterest Boards from some fun DIY ideas and inspiration. Happy fashion-ing!