How to Avoid Fast Fashion and Maintain a Sustainable Wardrobe?
As we live in a time where clothing hauls are presented on our social media feeds regularly, you’ve likely heard of the term ‘fast fashion’. If you’re not sure what it means, let us give you the rundown and help you steer clear of the wasteful clothing habits that often come with it.
What is fast fashion and why is it harmful?
Fast fashion occurs when businesses replicate recent catwalk trends and fashion designs to mass-produce them at a lower cost. This allows them to bring trendy clothing into retail stores quickly while the demand for it is at its highest.
Although it may not sound like a big deal, fast fashion causes substantial damage to our planet. Clothing takes massive amounts of water and energy to produce, and with trends changing rapidly, clothing is often discarded after just a few wears. Each year, 92 million tons of it end up in landfills. Also, since the majority of fast fashion clothing is made with synthetic fabrics like polyester, nylon, and acrylic, microplastics are released into our waterways with each wash. Because of these consequences, it's important that we recognize these issues and separate ourselves from the fast fashion cycle.
Maintaining, Replenishing and Cleansing your closet sustainably
Sustainably caring for clothes to prolong their lifespan
It’s important to take care of the clothing you own to try and extend its lifespan. Traditional laundry detergents often contain harsh chemicals that can cause fabrics to fade, shrink, or wear out quickly. Instead, try gentle and eco-friendly alternatives like Net Zero Strips. They have a lighter formula of natural ingredients with a powerful clean to help maintain the quality and appearance of your clothes. This reduces the need for frequent replacements and ultimately reduces textile waste. Reusable Wool Dryer Balls are another planet-friendly tool that can be used toward this goal. They help speed up drying time, reduce static, and soften fabrics without having to rely on chemical-filled products.
Building a sustainable wardrobe
One of the easiest ways to replenish your closet without supporting fast fashion is to buy secondhand clothing. By choosing to buy secondhand clothing, we extend its lifespan and lessen the demand for new production. This results in lower energy consumption, water usage, and greenhouse gas emissions related to the manufacturing of new clothing. Additionally, buying secondhand lessens the amount of clothing being sent to landfills, minimizing the overall amount of waste produced by fast fashion. In circumstances where you can’t shop for a secondhand piece, it’s also important to research the practices and materials used by the brands that you’re supporting and lean towards ones that align with your environmental beliefs.
What to do with your old clothing
When you no longer want certain clothing items in your closet, here’s what you can do to give them a second life instead of tossing them:
Donate your clothing to a local charity, thrift store, or community organization.
Participate in clothing swaps with friends, family, or local communities.
Sell or consign your items online through social media or in person through consignment shops.
Upcycle or DIY old clothing to repurpose it into new pieces.
Look for textile recycling facilities in your area to reduce the amount of materials that end up in landfills.
Practice sustainable fashion
By recognizing the environmental impact of our decisions and embracing sustainable alternatives such as buying secondhand clothing and responsibly managing our own closets, we can help break the cycle of fast fashion. Together, we can shape a more sustainable and mindful fashion industry for a brighter future!