Why It Costs More To Buy Sustainable Clothing
Start writing a post

Why It Costs More To Buy Sustainable Clothing

Breaking the bank to create a better world.

Why It Costs More To Buy Sustainable Clothing

Sustainability is something that every human on the planet should incorporate into their everyday lives. We have recently been greatly encouraged to cut down, consume less, and become more conscious of the materials we use. A great step towards sustainability has come from environmentally conscious clothing brands, becoming the source of fashion and staples for many. Despite the importance of a more conscious and aware industry, the factors playing into sustainable/ethical clothing end up increasing the literal price of products. If sustainability is encouraged and important, why is ethical clothing so hard to afford?

Some popular clothing companies that promise sustainable items include Reformation, Everlane, Outdoor Voices, and Patagonia. Prices range from around $58 for a button-up top to over $200 for a simple cotton dress. Some of the prices seem insane for those of us who refuse to invest large sums of money into basic items of clothing, but the high prices are there for a reason.

To completely understand the extreme prices, it is important to identify what exactly makes a clothing brand sustainable. Clothing sustainability is best defined as the responsibility producers have in calculating short and long term supply life of materials, while also taking into account the economic consequences and the ethical means of production that items may have. It can be a complex definition, but when broken down, is a very clear concept for making the world a better place.

Sustainability considers every point of an item's life; from production to exportation, to packaging, all the way down to consumption. Fairtrade clothing companies also consider where their materials are sourced and the pay their garment workers deserve. When a company says they are sustainable, they are expected to be transparent with their customers, always looking for ways to be better, and communicating their progress to the public.

Fast fashion clothing provides for harmful factory conditions, toxic chemicals, and poor pay for workers. Many times, workers are exploited and lack living wages to truly support their families. Clothing brands will throw out new styles trend after trend. These clothing items are usually cheaper and of lesser quality, resulting in a short lifespan, eventually producing more waste. Sustainable clothing recognizes environmental issues along with people's lives. Because of this, materials are usually more environmentally friendly/organic or recycled.

They are sourced more directly, upping the price on custom materials. This sourcing reduces waste and harmful chemicals used in producing clothing. There has been a huge interest recently in turning plastic bottles into puffer jackets, shoes, and rainwear. This "plastic fashion" has consequences of its own but is a huge step in reusing materials that would otherwise end up in our oceans. Many companies use other recycled materials and clothing to create re-used clothing.

So, sustainable clothing is generally more expensive because you are paying for clothing that will last longer, will have produced less waste, and has ethically supported the person who made the garment.

What should we do if we want to live more sustainably and support ethical brands but don't have the funds to do so? Luckily there are some companies out there who are working to provide cheaper, sustainable items for those who can't afford the pricier ones. Everlane actually has some pretty affordable pieces and often has sales on their website. PACT makes affordable intimates and basics with guaranteed comfort. Reformation pieces can be found at Nordstrom Rack for a fraction of the prices online. You can also shop for these brands second-hand on apps like Thred-up or Depop. Also, thrifting instead of buying new is always a good way to shop more sustainably.

Simply shopping less often and being mindful of where your clothing is coming from counts as living sustainably. When it comes down to protecting the planet and the people who inhabit it, it may be better for us to save our coins and purchase long-lasting, versatile pieces.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
writing on a page with a hand holding a pen as if the person is beginning to write something

Looking for some inspiration to kick off your Monday? Check out these articles by our talented team of response writers! From poetry to tips for manifesting your dream life, there's something for everyone.

Keep Reading... Show less

Exploring the Superbowl's Historic 50 Year Legacy!

Building up to next Sunday

football game
astros / Flickr

The Superbowl is the biggest football event of the year, and the 50-year history of the competition has seen a lot of memorable moments. The event first began in 1967, when the first AFL-NFL World Championship Game was played in Los Angeles. Since then, the NFL has grown from a small regional competition to an international phenomenon. Over the course of the last 50 years, the Superbowl has seen some amazing plays, memorable moments and incredible records. This includes Tom Brady's record of five Superbowl titles, the first time the Patriots won three consecutive championships, and the Steelers' record of six Superbowl titles. The event has also become a cultural phenomenon, with millions of people tuning in each year to watch the big game. There are now commercials, halftime shows, and other events that make the Superbowl a true American spectacle.

Keep Reading... Show less
11 Genres Of Music That Originated From Black Culture

Numbers don't lie, up in the charts many times, black culture has defined the music industry. Music is a worldly language that can be understood by people all over the world. You bet black culture has taken over the music industry, but not from the way you may think. I'm not talking about their prominent presence in the rap game, but the origins of eleven different genres of music. Black culture is always using their heritage and ancestral knowledge to transmute the current energy to a higher frequency. Personally, I'm not surprised that many of these music genres have originated from black culture. Thankfully, I've been able to grow up in a diverse environment. I can only thrive in a diversity of friends.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Influence Of Music

Music is more than just instruments and vocals.

Elyse Music

Music is a powerful concept all on its own. There’s something alluring about being able to cut out the rest of the world, and surrounding yourself with harmonious sounds that synthesize together in a pleasant manner.

Keep Reading... Show less

Grammy Awards Celebrate Music History tonight

This years nominations has some surprises

Grammy award

The Grammy Awards have long been an iconic symbol of celebrating musical artistry. Since their inception in 1959, the awards have celebrated the remarkable achievements of some of the biggest names in the music industry. From the Beatles to Beyonce, the Grammy Awards have provided a platform to recognize the extraordinary talent of musicians throughout the decades. Not only has the ceremony itself become a cultural staple, but the awards are also seen as a sign of excellence in the music industry. They commemorate the dedication and hard work that musicians put into their craft, and are a reminder of the influence and power that great music can have on people's lives.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments