The fashion industry is notoriously known as one of the biggest polluters in the world with a detrimental impact on the environment. Fortunately, there are more and more ethical businesses popping up proving that fashion can be slow and sustainable and that we can still look great without damaging our planet. It only takes a conscious decision to shop for ethical brands to make a difference both to the planet and the people.
Here are several reasons why you should choose to make the shift from fast fashion to a sustainable and ethical one.
Learn the truth about fast fashion
It’s deeply disturbing once you find out that the clothes you purchase and enjoy wearing cause harm to the environment and poverty and pain to millions of fashion industry employees. Such revelation should cause a revolution in the minds of all of us and have us re-evaluate all our choices concerning fashion. For instance, if you look at a fancy dress by a famous brand, it’s actually a picture of exploitation, inhumane working conditions and sometimes even death.
When you learn what most fashion brands rely on, it’s much easier to make the switch to ethical fashion and stick to it. There are many sources online that you can explore, including many informative documentary videos, that can give you a clearer picture of the harmful effects of fast fashion you can make more educated choices in the future.
It offers benefits both for people and the planet
Fast fashion manages to keep the cost of clothing down at the expense of low pays and poor conditions in developing and third world countries. When you switch to ethically produced brands, you are supporting the clothing brands that don’t take advantage of workers or use child labour.
It may sound hard to believe, but modern-day slavery still exists. Unfair wages, much below the minimum limit, unacceptable safety and health conditions, endless working hours, and the ban on workers unions is the reality that most fast fashion industry workers have to face and endure. Sadly, they also frequently have to endure verbal and physical abuse.
Brands with developed eco-awareness and high ethical and moral standards advocate for ensuring humane working conditions, fair wages and quality health care for their workers. They also have a higher mission than just making a profit – they strive for creating better economic opportunities for those in need to end poverty. For instance, choosing ethical jewelry over mass-produced one means that you support a business that makes the effort to leave a minimal environmental impact and strives towards employing local people and giving them support and strength to create their own future.
On the other side, the fast fashion industry leaves a huge environmental footprint adding to the existing landfills, consuming power and water beyond reasonable limits, and using various chemicals in growing cotton that find their way into the water supply and thus affect the health of everyone in the supply chain. In opting for ethical and sustainable fashion brand, you are saying NO to supporting the harmful environmental impact of the fashion industry, and in turn, you are reducing your own environmental footprint.
It’s beneficial to buy pre-loved
There are great advantages to stopping shopping for brand new garments – you can reinvent yourself and create your own, unique style from pre-loved, second-hand, inherited, thrifted or vintage materials and items. Once you dive into the exciting search for a pre-owned wardrobe, you’ll discover that the transition is not at all challenging and that it opens up a whole new world of possibilities for you to experiment with.
There are many reasons why you should turn to buying pre-loved clothes. For starters, you won’t be contributing any money to the multi-billion dollar fast fashion industry nor would you be unintentionally supporting unsustainable and unethical brands. On a personal level, it’s very economical, particularly if you can’t afford pricey items from famous brands.
By reusing and refashioning pre-owned garments you stop them from ending up in landfills. According to research, more than 10.5 million tons of wearable garments end up in landfills in North America each year, and only about 15% of used clothing ever gets donated or recycled. It’s absolutely shocking to know that about 95% of the textile in landfills today could have been recycled.
It will take a lot of changes to push the textile industry towards sustainable production since every aspect of it needs to be transformed, from sourcing materials, treatment of workers to transport and consumers’ attitude. Fortunately, as the world is evolving, people are starting to change as well which is opening the way towards sustainable fashion.