Everyone wants to keep up with the latest fashion trends and look like the celebrities that they idolize, but what is the cost of this? As everything comes with a price, so does fashion. The fast fashion industry is booming in the US and worldwide.
What is Fast Fashion?
Fast fashion is clothes that are quickly produced to keep up with trends. It is called fast fashion because of how fast they move through production and into stores. Its rise to fame was in the 1990s when shopping became a source of entertainment. Consumers were able to get cheap knockoffs of the items being produced by larger, high priced designers and they could get them fast. Some examples of fast fashion stores are Zara, H&M, Top Shop, and Forever 21.
Disadvantages to Fast Fashion and Effect on the Environment:
Fast fashion has also been dubbed “disposable fashion” because of its short lifespan and consumers’ tendency to only wear their items once or twice. Because of how cheap the items are, they are often very poorly made; so, when they are discarded they can’t be recycled and therefore sit in landfills. Not just this, the synthetic microfibers that are shed from the items of clothing end up in our water and we ultimately ingest them through our water supply.
What You Can Do:
Shop small and local! Ditch the bigger chains and support your local boutiques and retail stores. Get to know the brands that you buy from and make sure they are producing their items in a sustainable way. Search for clothes that are made in the US where you know that the workers are being paid a fair wage and working in a comfortable environment. Wearing hand-me-down clothes and thrifting is another great way to reduce clothing waste. Throwing away clothing of any kind is not ideal so reusing is always the best option. Pay attention to the clothes that you wear and where they come from. Paying more for clothing is an investment in not only the future of the earth, but also yourself and your health.