The Fast-Fashion Crisis
Lifestyle

The Fast-Fashion Crisis And A Glimpse Into The Sustainable Solutions

How can I still look cute without all the ethical and moral dilemmas? One word—Thrifting.

17

Did You Mean Fast Food?

No. Fast-fashion is exactly what I mean. Many people are still unaware that this term exists, much less what ethical dilemmas and environmental wrongdoings exist behind the title. Fast-fashion, as explained by the handy dandy dictionary, is "an approach to the design, creation, and marketing of clothing fashions that emphasizes making fashion trends quickly and cheaply available to consumers". That doesn't sound entirely awful, though maybe that's because it leaves out the ethics and dangers I mentioned earlier. So get ready for some fast-fashion transparency.


Fast Fashion stores highlark.com


Ethics And Morals And Conscience, Oh My

The "slow-fashion" movement has been developing in response to the instability of the warped speed of production from brands like Forever21, H&M, PacSun, Zara, and the like. It pins a focus on shifting away from purchasing from these trendy stores due to their ethical and moral downfalls. Fast-fashion companies typically employ cheap labor abroad in factory conditions that are grim and quite depressing. Many of the workers are paid measly cents for the work they do every day, which gets shipped off to places like your local mall, where you purchase it cheaply, but for way more than the person who made it earned. That's already really bad, right? I'm pretty sure we can all agree on that. But the issue with ethics doesn't end there.

The environment is something we should all look out for, and it may surprise you to realize just how bad the fashion industry is for our earth. It sure surprised me when I first learned about it! Earlier we defined fast-fashion and made it clear that the main goal for these companies is to sell products cheaply and quickly in order to keep the trends in stores. But as we all know, trends come and go faster than it takes to pull on a new outfit in the dressing room. Remember when scrunchies first came back in style? We were all thinking "Why? Too 90's!". But now they're everywhere and they're cute as all get out. But they might be going back out of style tomorrow. That's what happens with the trends.

They're volatile—always changing and coming and going before anyone can get a good grasp on them. That being said, this makes all of the many thousands of trendy clothing items and accessories entirely out of fashion very quickly. Ombre, that pattern where a dark color fades into the lighter shade, was "in" for a while but I haven't seen it in stores in a few years. But where did all of those extra ombre shirts go? To the fashion wasteland, that's where. Otherwise known as a dump that is growing taller and more massive every day with stacks upon stacks of fabric pieces and outdated clothes.

Wastelandrmit.edu.au

Not only that, but it takes a whopping 700 gallons of water to produce one cotton t-shirt. Look down, you might be wearing 700 gallons of water production on you currently. That number is so wildly big that it's almost hard to believe. But this extreme water use is one of the many reasons that the fast-fashion industry is so unforgiving to our beautiful earth.

Okay, You're Aware. Now what?

Once we are made aware, we can decide what we want to do with this information. We can decide if we will let it affect our consumer habits or not. According to researchers Lisa McNeill and Rebecca Moore, there are three types of consumers; "self" consumers, "social" consumers, and "sacrifice" consumers. Self consumers are focused only on themselves and what they want. They either are unaware of the negatives and are ignorant of the facts or they just don't care about the fast-fashion impacts. Social consumers are more focused on their social image, so they might shop either ethically or not to please others rather than themselves or some deeper personal moral code. Sacrifice consumers are those who are entirely focused on the good of the people and the environment and will give up the luxury of fast-fashion to appease their beliefs. If we all attempt to act more like sacrifice consumers, the earth will surely thank us. It's a bit of a stretch to ask everyone to change their consumer habits, but there are a few easy ways to make the switch.


Thrifted jeanskeepbritaintidy.org


Trendy thrifting housingworks.org


Thrifting is GOODpinterest.com


Thrifting…But Make It Fashion

Okay, okay, maybe a little obvious but oh-so-underrated. Thrifting is a great way to reduce your traffic at the fast-fashion filled mall while still looking just as cute and trendy like everyone else. And another perk other than a clean environmental and ethical conscience? You will probably never have on the same outfit as someone else! As we have already mentioned, trends come back around in this crazy cycle. When you're thrifting, you're bound to see clothes that are beyond trendy yet are also a little vintage, which makes them even cooler, let's be real!

Another thing we can all work on is hanging on to our clothes for longer. Don't throw them away! As Lizzie McGuire would say,"I am an outfit repeater. Gladly and proudly." And if you are looking for a fresh look, take a bag—a fabric reusable bag, preferably full of your old clothes to the thrift store the next time you search the racks for your next one-of-a-kind statement piece. I'll thank you in advance, and I can promise that if the earth could talk, she sure as heck would be thanking you big time, too.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Lifestyle

These 11 Face Masks On Etsy Support Small Businesses While Fighting The Spread Of Coronavirus

We're staying safe as states start lifting lockdown guidelines.

I, like most people who have had the luxury of being able to stay at home during this time, haven't spent much time outdoors at all. But when I do brave the great outdoors for a walk or to get to the grocery store, you won't find me without a mask.

My family and I were lucky enough to have family friends who were sewing some and had extras to give to us, but most of my friends and loved ones outside my immediate family have had to order some (or make a makeshift one out of scarves or bandanas).

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

13 Reasons We're Using Quarantine As The Ultimate Excuse For Online Shopping This Month

The one thing we haven't distanced from is our bank account.

Throughout quarantine, I've been FaceTiming most of my friends in a full turtleneck or the go-to cozy sweater I keep wrapped around the chair in my room. Either way, I always have tea in my hands to keep myself warm — till this past week.

For most of the country who hasn't had the luck of quarantining in 90-degree weather on their family's lake house or with a backyard pool, things began to change this month. Our favorite shows came out with summer seasons, the sun came out, and we started spending more time outside.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Sat Down (Virtually) With Morgan Wooten To Talk About Coronavirus's Impact On The Wellness Industry

Just because coronavirus has greatly impacted the wellness industry doesn't mean wellness stops.

Morgan Wooten

If you're anything like me, your weekly fitness classes are a huge part of your routine. They keep me fit, healthy, and sane. Honestly, these classes help my mental health stay in tip-top shape just as much as they help my physical health.

Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, gyms and fitness studios are facing temporary closure. Yes, this means my personal routine is thrown a curveball, but this also means the wellness industry is one of many that is looking at unemployment and hardship. Do I miss my Monday spin class? Of course. But do the wellness professionals whose worlds were flipped upside down have a lot more to overcome than a slight change of routine? Absolutely. Thankfully, if anyone can prove the ultimate flexibility, it's the wellness industry.

Keep Reading... Show less
HBO Max

If you are a normal person who spends most of their time streaming TV shows, you'll know that "Friends" was taken off Netflix early in 2020. Given that a global pandemic followed shortly after, many diehard fans of the show stuck in quarantine have been experiencing significant Central Perk withdrawal.

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

How To Interview A Class Of 2020 Graduate

What they've been through is truly unprecedented.

Odyssey

No matter how you want to spin it, the Class of 2020 will be the first class graduating amidst a global pandemic.

Keep Reading... Show less
Netflix

By now, it is safe to declare "Outer Banks" on Netflix as THE TV Show of quarantine.

"Tiger King" got out to an early lead, but since, the Pogues and the Kooks have owned pop culture conversations while everyone has been couped up this spring amidst a global pandemic. And if you are one of the very few people out there in the world that has not heard about "Outer Banks" and or haven't binged it yet, well...

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Spoke To A California ER Doctor About COVID-19, And Y'all, Our Healthcare Workers Know What's Up

In light of what's going on in the world, it's time to get some front-line perspective.

It seems like the only thing I do these days is scroll through social media in a desperate attempt to gain information. My phone has called me out on my screen time more than once, and I just continue to ignore it. You're probably in the same boat — stuck at home, scrolling deeper and deeper into a hole of conspiracy theories and possible "back to normalcy" dates, hungry for information.

While we know that the news is not our mental health's friend these days, getting reliable information is helpful and necessary.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments