We have more than we need and we keep shopping. Start the change today discovering how to fix the problem of Fast Fashion.
We’re right in between the sale season, and we already have so many offers from different clothing brands and online apparel sites. As appealing and lucrative these offers seem, we need to start asking ourselves – do we really need the number of clothes we end up purchasing? Is that ‘Buy 2, get 2 free’ offer worth it – both from monetary and environmental perspectives?
In this world where the ‘use and throw’ culture prevails, how do we fix the problem of fast fashion? But before we talk about ways we can deal with fast fashion, let’s understand the impact of fast fashion.
Impact of Fast Fashion
While we are busy adding clothes to our carts (both online and physical stores), there’s a whole world outside that’s facing the consequences of our shopping addictions. Most apparel brands use toxic chemicals to ensure clothes have a bright, vibrant look. While we fall for these appealing clothes, we don’t realize that the dyes and colors used to color our clothes are filled with toxic chemicals.
When these clothes are dumped after usage, the toxic chemicals get absorbed into water bodies. Most of these chemicals are carcinogenic and ultimately end up entering our bodies in different ways. These chemicals can disrupt hormones in humans.
Some of the most popular fabrics are actually the most harmful ones – for example, polyester. It sheds microfibers which only leads to piling up of already existing plastic. Life in the seas consumes these fibers, and ultimately they end up on our plates.
The manufacturing of clothes consumes a lot of water. Untreated water from the apparel manufacturing units is discharged into water bodies. This ultimately ends up in freshwater bodies, like rivers and lakes. Also, when we dump these clothes, they end up in landfills, which is a rising menace these days.
Along with all these environmental issues, we cannot deny the unethical treatment of factory workers in large manufacturing units. While this is not widely discussed, these workers work under inhumane working conditions at meager wages. This is another major issue existing in the clothing industry.
How do we fix the problem of Fast Fashion?
Let’s have a look at what we can do in our capacity to deal with the issue of fast fashion:
Buy Only What is Needed
We need to think before we splurge on clothes. Even the most organic, green garment requires resources – right from its manufacturing stage till it finally reaches your home. We need to reconsider our choices and buy only as much as we require. To put it more simply – we need to start living as our grandmas did. For every one piece of clothing they bought, we buy five more. Thanks to the accessibility, purchasing power, and affordable clothing alternatives, we have now lost track of whether we’re buying for our needs or greed.
Choose Sustainable Brands
Sustainable clothing is now easily available in stores near you. The price of these clothes may be more than what you pay otherwise, but trust us, this choice is totally worth every penny you put in. Also, we easily and quickly shell out money for all the apparel from high-end brands. However, we can always put the money to good use and opt for a sustainable, eco-friendly brand instead.
Opt For Better Quality Clothes
Most of us buy clothes only because they are cheap or available at a discounted price. Accessibility is what has changed our shopping habits so much so that we no longer realize that we buy more than what we need. Some of the apparel we buy lie unused for years – to the extent where we may even grow out of them, not use them and ultimately dump them.
When we invest in good quality clothing, we will force brands to manufacture only good quality, durable clothing. This will not only help the clothes stay good for a longer time but will also allow us to use them for a longer time – ensuring they don’t end up in a landfill soon. Also, we save money! Now that’s a win-win situation.
Repair Clothes Or Reuse Them
If a couple of buttons have come off a sweater, why buy a new one when we can actually fix the buttons back? There are many ways to repair clothes, upcycle them and even reuse them. We have many options that we can try, rather than the clothes ending up in a landfill. We can also sell used clothes on second-hand apps!
We live in an age where we have many alternatives available when it comes to recycling, upcycling, or reusing our clothes. Also, we hope our tips helped – the next time you feel like going overboard with your shopping, you know what exactly to do!