Letting Go Of My Wallet's Favorite Fast Fashion Stores.

I Love The Prices of  Fast Fashion, But I Don't Love The Background Of Their Production

Letting go of mass-market retailers, even though my wallet loves it.

43
views

For the last six months or so, I haven't stepped foot into a Forever 21, which has definitely not been easy. Their store has so many choices at really low prices, but I found myself opting to go to different stores instead. This was the result of learning of the ethics of their brand, what kinds of production exactly allows them to make their clothes so quickly and sell them at such low prices.

Not only this, but when considering the recent Kim Kardashian Missguided scandal, and the original designers that may not be getting credited or just ripped off by these brands, I found it difficult to want to put my money towards brands that capitalize on purely current trends and not original ideas or trying something different. As a college student, fast fashion is so tempting and seems like the best option out there. However, I want to go through my own ways of avoiding these brands as best as I can, and maybe try and convince you to do the same.

So what exactly is some of the background behind fast fashion brands? At the forefront of my own personal issues are labor practices, which are far from ethical in order to create products that are extremely cheap and can be made quickly in order to fit current trends. This article posted by Green America outlines the kinds of exploitation and abuse workers at the outsourced factories for these stores' producers face, particularly women workers.

There is also the sustainable aspect of the clothes these fast fashion brands sell, that is how environmentally unfriendly many of the clothes from these brands can be. According to this post by the UAB Human Rights Institute, 15.1 million tons of textile were created in a single year. This is due to the cheap materials of the clothing making them more likely to be ripped or damaged, which makes it unlikely a person will donate them to a second hand store.

There is also the copyright aspect of fast fashion, which is often overlooked. This Vox article on Kim Kardashian's lawsuit against Miss Guided goes into much better detail than I can. But, the main gist is that copyright laws within the United States do not protect fashion designs, which make designs of all kind fair game. The goal of most of these fast fashion brands is to make available the styles celebrities like Kim Kardashian wear to average consumers at a reasonable price. The dress that set off the Kardashian lawsuit was a vintage designer dress probably worth thousands, while the fast fashion version could go for as low as twenty dollars. While I don't want to knock brands trying to make fashion more affordable for people, I do have an issue with the whole concept of just straight up ripping off designs instead of maybe adding to them or building up on them. There is a desire for almost exact replicas, but I feel like artistic integrity needs to start to be considered as well.

I don't want to just flat out attack brands like Forever 21 or Missguided, because I think some of them make an effort to create original designs and overall be more sustainable. I know that Boohoo.com and Fashion Nova have both worked on capsule collections with different celebrities and for different causes with what I would say are genuinely original and different ideas, and H&M; is the store I've seen most visibly working towards being more sustainable with a clothes recycling incentive and a whole line of sustainable clothing. These brands have definitely felt the backlash that comes with less than ethical means of production, and they're making genuine efforts to overcome them while still being affordable.

I think the best effort that anyone can make when it comes to being more sustainable with clothes is taking the best care of them you can. If we reduce rebuying clothes it puts less money into pockets of brands that don't funnel it towards better working conditions for their producers or towards worthy causes like our environment or other forms of activism or charity. Buying a T-shirt isn't something you should feel bad about, but when buying from these brands, make sure it's something you're actually going to get regular use out of and that you can make last.

A similar step to take is to just stop buying too many clothes in general. As someone who also loves shopping, I know this isn't easy, but when your closet is already packed to the brim, and you're still browsing, it's time to take a breath and walk out the store. Finding new ways to style your old clothes is actually super fun, and if you have the crafting prowess, altering or reworking your clothes is definitely a must try.

When it comes to shopping options, I don't want to entirely discourage shopping at these stores, but there are other options. I have to admit I still go into H&M; frequently, though I try to stick to their sustainable line to the best of my ability. The best alternative is definitely thrift stores or vintage shops. I love vintage clothing, and it's definitely become a huge trend these last few years, so these are great options with similar price tags. If you don't love used clothing, however, there are plenty of small businesses online and within your area who are generally more visible with their production practices and where they source labor and material from, who may fit your style perfectly.

As a college student, it's definitely not easy to not want to buy from these kinds of brands because their clothes are genuinely trendy and within our budget, but trying to cut back on how much money we give to them is a really solid effort I think we can all take. While not buying from these stores is near impossible for pretty much all of us, I think it's always important to remember the stories behind the clothes we're looking at.

There is no one brand that is entirely ethical or sustainable yet, and that's just a fact of production and industry. However, in putting our money towards those that are at least making an effort, or who have created styles or fashion ideas we love, we can definitely help contribute to making the whole industry more positive for those who work in it and the environment in general. There are a lot of brands out there who are trying to make a positive difference and so many alternatives to those who are not, so let's throw our hard earned money towards their clothes and also their cause.

Popular Right Now

22 Of The Best Beauty Product Dupes Of All Time

I love buying new make up, and I love saving money -- dupes are the best way to have the best of both worlds!
64475
views

I am a make-up and beauty product junkie. I always have been, and probably always will be. My heart yearns for the high end, and raved about products. Unfortunately for me, my wallet cannot support these desires. So, if you're looking for a way to keep your make-up game on 'fleek,' but you're on a college girl budget -- check out these amazing dupes of name brand products:

1. NYX Lingerie in 'Bedtime Flirt' for Kylie Lip Kit in 'Candy K'

You won't get a matching lip liner with this one, but they are pretty much the exact same color. NYX does have a line of very affordable lip liners as well. So, finding one to match shouldn't be too hard, and will still save you money.

NYX 'Bedtime Flirt': $7.00

Kylie Lip Kit 'Candy K': $29.00

2. NYX Liquid Suede in 'Vintage' for Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid Lipstick in 'Trust Issues'

While ABH's liquid lipstick has a little more of a matte finish than NYX's Liquid Suede, the color swatches are almost a perfect match. The top lip, pictured above, is 'Trust Issues.' The bottom lip is 'Vintage.' Can you spot a noticeable difference? Me neither.

NYX 'Vintage': $7.00

ABH 'Trust Issues': $20.00

3. L'Oreal eyeshadow in 'Iced Latte' for Stila's 'Kitten' eyeshadow


Stila's 'Kitten' eyeshadow is perfect for every day eye wear. This L'Oreal eyeshadow is the perfect dupe for it. You won't be able to tell the difference!

L'Oreal 'Iced Latte': $7.00

Stila's 'Kitten': $18.00

4. L'Oreal True Match blush in 'Baby Blossom' for Benefit's Luminizer in 'Dandelion'

The 'Dandelion' luminizer is one of my favorite cheek products. L'areal True Match is the best drugstore dupe for it, and let me tell you -- it's a dang near perfect match. The packaging isn't as cute, but if it saves you money? Why not!

L'Oreal 'Baby Blossom': $10.95

Benefit 'Dandelion': $29.00

5. NYX Born to Glow liquid illuminator in Gleam for NARS illuminator in 'Orgasm'

This is a perfect dupe, and a must have for anyone who loves that glow-y illuminated look. This stuff is a steal!

NYX 'Born To Glow': $7.50

NARS 'Orgasm': $30.00

6. City Color 'White Gold' highlight mousse for Pat Mcgrath Labs highlighter in 'Golden'

Pat McGrath Labs' highlighters are to die for. While City Color provides the perfect color dupe, there are some differences -- you won't receive it in an adorable package filled with gold sequins, and you will miss out on the make up brush and Skin Fetish Balm. 'White Gold' is also a cream versus 'Golden' being a pressed powder. If you're like me, and are in awe of the glow this gives, but can't afford to dish out the cold hard cash for it...this is for you!

City Color 'White Gold': $5.99

Pat Mcgrath Labs 'Golden': $72.00

7. NYX 'Matte Bronzer' for NARS bronzer in 'Laguna'


'Laguna' is one of my favorite bronzers! It's matte, perfect for everyday use, and can be used for contouring. Unfortunately, it's a little on the pricier side. So, go with NYX 'Matte Bronzer' for a drugstore dupe!

NYX 'Matte Bronzer': $9.00

NARS 'Laguna': $30.00

8. Makeup Revolution's 'Lip Lava' for Too Faced's 'Melted'

Too Faced Definitely wins on the packaging, but with prices like these? Who cares. You can count me in.

Your dupe cheat sheet: Shockwave = Melted Violet, Forgiven = Melted Nude, Tremor = Melted Peony, Unleash = Melted Coral, and Firestorm = Melted Ruby.

'Lip Lava': $5.00

'Melted': $21.00

9. Elf dupes for NARS blush:

'Pink Passion' is a little less pigmented than 'Desire,' and 'Peachy Keen' is not quite as deep in tone as 'Luster,' but other than that -- these dupes are spot on.

Elf blushes: $3.00

NARS blushes: $30.00

10. NYX 'Photo-Loving Primer' for Smashbox's 'Photo Finish' Primer

The trick to long lasting make-up? Primer and a good setting spray.

NYX 'Photo-Loving Primer': $13.00

Smashbox 'Photo Finish': $36.00

11. L'Oreal Infallible 'Pro-Spray & Set' for Urban Decay 'All Nighter' make up setting spray

Speaking of setting spray, 'All Nighter' is one of the best out there. If you're looking for a cheaper option, this is it. I use this stuff every day!

L'Oreal Infallible 'Pro-Spray & Set': $13.79

Urban Decay 'All Nighter': $30

12. Rimmel London blush in 'Pink Sorbet' for Benefit's 'Coralista'

Coral-y blushes are my personal fav for achieving a pink cheek. Benefit is known for their cheek products, but if you're looking for a cheaper option, this is it!

Rimmel's 'Pink Sorbet': $4.00

Benefit's 'Coralista': $28.00

13. Elf Radiance Enhancer in 'Spotlight' for NARS illuminator in 'Copacabana'


You obviously do not get nearly as much product, and the Elf product has more of a pinky tone to it, but this stuff is a very close match for the price! (If you want something less pink, and want to spring a few extra dollars for a closer dupe, try NYX 'Born To Glow' liquid illuminator in the lighter shade! It's only $7.50 and a closer fit)

Elf 'Spotlight': $3.00

Nars 'Copacabana': $30.00

14. Colour Pop's 'Chilly Chili' for Anastasia Beverly Hills liquid lipstick in 'Veronica'

I think the color swatches pretty much speak for themselves here! I am a huge Colour Pop fan. They have decent quality products for low end prices. Their color varieties are out of this world, too! If you ever are looking for a dupe, you can probably find one through them. You're welcome.

Colour Pop 'Chilly Chili': $6.00


ABH 'Veronica': $20.00


15. Elf's baked eyeshadow in 'Enchanted' for Becca X Jaclyn Hill Shimmering Skin Perfector in 'Champagne Pop'

Now, to clarify, this is in no way a perfect dupe for this amazing product. Obviously, the consistency is far less creamy and smooth (it is a drugstore eyeshadow after all), but color wise? It's an almost perfect match. Don't be afraid to use products in the "wrong places."

Elf 'Enchanted': $3.00

Becca 'Champagne Pop': $38.00

16. Colour Pop Ultra Matte Lip in 'Rooch' for Kylie Matte liquid Lipstick in 'Leo'

If you are anything like me, you were extremely disappointed to find out that Kylie's Birthday Collection was only available for a limited time. If you missed out on the 'Leo' shade, Colour Pop's 'Rooch' is the perfect dupe! Not to mention, it's much cheaper.

Colour Pop 'Rooch': $6.00

Kylie's 'Leo': No Longer Available

17. Colour Pop Ultra Matte Lip in 'Chi' for Kylie's Matte Liquid Lipstick in 'Dolce K'

Another Colour Pop steal! I told you this brand was amazing, and I wasn't kidding. This is the perfect dupe for one of my favorite Kylie lip shades. A must have in, in my humble opinion. Again, you won't receive the corresponding lip liner with this one, but you can probably find one that's pretty close and still be able to save a few bucks in the process.

Colour Pop 'Chi': $6.00

Kylie's 'Dolce K': $29.00

18. Maybelline Fit Me 'Matte And Poreless' for MAC 'Studio Fix' foundation

Seriously, this is my go-to for every day foundation. I am in love with this stuff. I actually had been using this foundation for over a year before I found out it was even considered a dupe for MAC 'Studio Fix.' A high quality find for a low price is always a win in my book!

Maybelline 'Matte and Poreless': $8.00

MAC 'Studio Fix': $30.00

19. NYX 'Radiant Finishing Powder' for Bobbi Brown Brightening Finish in 'Porcelain Pearl'

Bobbi Brown's version has a little more of a glow-y look when applied than NYX's version, but as you can see, they are pretty dang close. This dupe is definitely worth the investment.

NYX 'Radiant Finishing Powder': $8.99

Bobbi Brown 'Porcelain Pearl': $57.00

20. BH Cosmetics 'shaaanxo' palette for Kylie Jenner's 'Kyshadow' palette


There was some controversy over this one, but none-the-less it's nearly the perfect dupe. Not to mention, 'Kyshadow' is not an easy thing to get your hands on -- this is a much easier route.

BH Cosmetics 'shaaanxo': $14.50

Kylie Jenner's 'Kyshadow': $42.00

21. Milani's Baked Blush in 'Rose D' Oro' for MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in 'Cheeky Bronze'

I love Milani products when shopping the drug store make up aisles. Plus, I love the cute gold packaging, and actually really prefer it over the MAC plain black packaging. I suggest checking out their other products as well if you're an avid drugstore shopper for your beauty products.

Milani 'Rose D'Oro': $7.99

MAC 'Cheeky Bronze': $33.00

22. Colour Pop Ultra Matte Lips for Jeffree Star's Velour Liquid Lipsticks

Yet again, another Colour Pop steal for the win! Pictured above are a few examples, but there are many more! Including the more exotic shades of blues, purples, and greens. These liquid lipsticks are the bomb dot com, and are on this list so many times for a reason. There is a dupe for almost every high end lip product your little heart could desire.


Colour Pop Ultra Matte Lips:
$6.00

Jeffree Star's Velour Liquid Lipsticks: $18.00


I love buying new make up, and I love saving money -- dupes are the best way to have the best of both worlds!

All prices are accurate and items in stock as of the time of publication. As an Amazon Associate, Odyssey may earn a portion of qualified sales.

Cover Image Credit: tumblr.com

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

8 Reasons I'll Take In-Store Shopping Over Online Shopping Any Day

In-store shopping shouldn't be disregarded.

308
views

Lately, there have been many department stores closing due to the rise of online shopping as opposed to in-store shopping. According to Fox Business, this includes department stores such as Payless, Gymboree, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Dress Barn. The close of so many retail stores has led to more questions as to whether online shopping will become the only method of shopping.

However, just like with reading on a Kindle versus reading an actual book, not everyone prefers shopping online. At least, I don't prefer online shopping, and yes, I have tried shopping online for almost everything.

Here are eight reasons why shopping in the store will always be better than online shopping, no matter what other people have stated.

1. You can try on clothes

Clothes

Pixabay

This is one of the biggest problems I have with online shopping! You can't try on the clothes before buying them online. Sure, you can try on the clothes you get once they've been shipped. But if you have trouble finding the right size, especially since for women every size in almost any store varies, then it becomes more of a hassle.

Yes, a lot of online shopping sites have a "find the right size" menu where it gives you multiple measurements that match certain sizes. But most of those measurements include waist, hip, stomach sizes, and who has time to measure all of that?

2. You can expect what you're going to get

Shopping

Becca McHaffie / Unsplash

With in-store shopping, you usually know what you get with buying an item. You know what the item looks like from seeing it in person, or with clothes you've felt the fabric and seen what it looks like in person. With online shopping, you basically don't know for sure what to expect until you receive the item in the mail. There are a lot of sites that may try to scam you where they'll present you with a clothing item that looks nice on the model until you receive it and it looks nothing like what you saw online. At least with in-store shopping, this doesn't happen as often.

3. No shipping expenses

Cost

Artem Beliaikin / Unsplash

The nice part with in-store shopping is you don't have to spend extra expenses on shipping. Although there are times when online shopping sites offer free shipping, on some sites, it's hard to find free shipping. And on a lot of sites, they will try to offer free shipping only if you buy items that are $50 or more, which means you have to pay for more to receive free shipping.

4. No wait to receive what you buy

Shipped Box

Tyler / Flickr

The great part about in-store shopping is you get the item right away, unless you ask for the item to be ordered in the store. With online shopping, you have to wait for the item to be sent. And although there are some shipping options that allow one-day shipping, you'll sometimes be charged more to receive the item early. With in-store shopping, at least you get the outfit you want or item you need as soon as you pay for it.

5. You can avoid additional shipping hazards

Shipping

Bench Accounting / Unsplash

There are a lot of other shipping hassles that you have to go through besides waiting for the item to be shipped and the cost of shipping. You also have to worry about the item getting lost in the mail or if you'll receive it at the right address. And sometimes the item can get damaged during transit, which makes you feel like you wasted all of your money on buying the it.

6. You can speak to a sales representative in person

Sales Representative

Blake Wisz / Unsplash

This is especially helpful for buying bras or a dress. With in-store shopping, you can talk to a sales representative and get their opinion before buying the item. Sure, online shopping has someone you can talk to online, but it's not the same since you aren't talking to them in person or trying on the clothes in front of them. With in-store shopping, they can give you advice when you try on the item and offer you alternatives if it doesn't fit, whereas with online shopping, they can only offer you general advice without seeing you try on the item.

7. The option to pay with cash

Cash

Sharon McCutcheon / Unsplash

If you hate paying with a debit card, then you probably would prefer in-store shopping. The problem with online shopping is that you can't pay with cash since you can't exactly transfer real money online except through a debit card. With in-store shopping, you at least always have the option of paying with cash.

8. You miss the experience of shopping in person

Shopping

freestocks.org / Unsplash

Lastly, what most people don't seem to understand is that with online shopping, you don't get the whole experience with in-store shopping. You don't get to walk through a mall, try on clothes, finger through the fabric, or see clothes or items in person. Instead, you have to sit behind a computer and shop. Though many people may like online shopping because you don't have to go through the hassle of dealing with people or lines in a store, you still miss out on real experiences with shopping.

So many people are already found in their houses behind a computer screen or buried in their phones. We already miss out on real experiences because we're too caught up in the digital world. So why should we do the same with shopping?

As you can see, shopping in person can have its own benefits to it. I'm not saying that online shopping is completely bad where you may not be able to purchase the item in the store. However, I also don't think that in-store shopping should be disregarded for online shopping. Not everyone enjoys shopping online completely, and by getting rid of in-store shopping, we miss out on the many different experiences that come with it.

Related Content

Facebook Comments