How many times have you wanted to have the latest, trendy clothing? And how long did it last? On average, clothing only lasts 7 wears. By which time a new clothing line is released and the old item gets thrown away. To where? Landfill. And guess what, only 1% of it is recycled. So, why is this such a huge impact on our planet?
Fast fashion is the term used to describe clothing designs that move quickly from the catwalk to stores to take advantage of trends. The collections are often based on styles presented at Fashion Week runway shows or worn by celebrities. Fast fashion allows mainstream consumers to purchase the hot new look or the next big thing at an affordable price.
Fast fashion first became popular because of its cheap expenses and trendy looks. However, does this all come at a cost? According to figures from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), it takes 3781 litres of water to make one pair of jeans. Every year, the fashion industry uses 93 billion cubic meters of water - enough to meet the consumption needs of five million people.
So, what can we do to solve this?
There are many alternative options to buying fast fashion including shopping at second-hand stores, organizing a clothing swap, renting clothes, and adopting new habits to help you resist the urge to buy fast fashion items. Extending the life of clothes by just 9 months of active use would reduce carbon, water and waste footprints by 20-30% each. 97% of fashion items are made overseas. If you can find goods that are made and sold nearby, you are winning the war against fast fashion!
Look for local shops that follow ethical and sustainable practices: buying items that are made locally reduces emissions because the items don’t have to travel as far to get from the manufacturer to the consumer.
So, what are you going to start doing?
You could start by supporting our Keeping up with Crofton fast fashion recycling project! If you have any unwanted clothes that are heading for the landfill, please bring them to Miss Baldock in E3, where all clothes will be sorted and donated to local charities. Clothes must be washed and in a good, wearable condition.
By Eelana V - 8ABW