All of us want to dress-up well. But we also want to keep up with the latest trends that often come at a dire cost. It is not about the financial cost. Fast fashion is quite a cheap fashion, but there is an issue.
If it’s not about the cost of the clothing, then what is it?
Fast fashion refers to clothing that is designed for those who wish to consume it instantly at cheap rates. Consumers use these clothes a few times and replace them with trending fashion wear. The amount of CO2 produced by the textile industries to design these clothes is more than that of international flights or maritime shipping.
Fast fashion is nowhere near sustainable as it depletes the Earth’s natural resources. It creates an overwhelming amount of waste which may cause damage to the environment. While traditional fashion houses produce only a few seasonal collections per year, fast fashion produces one new collection every week to drive more consumption. The clothing industry is the second most polluting industry after oil.
If sustainability becomes a priority for all the brands, then our wallet and wardrobe will improvise. Now that we have a brief about fast fashion, let’s have a look at what is sustainable fashion, how will it impact the fashion industry, etc., etc.
Let’s get answers to all these queries.
What is Sustainable Fashion?
Sustainable fashion refers to producing clothes, apparel, and shoes in an environmental and socio-friendly manner. It will also generate more sustainable patterns of consumption and use.
Sustainable clothes use fabrics like hemp, organic cotton, and Pima cotton that do not harm much to the environment. The brands aim to produce stylish and comfortable clothing forgoing environmental conditions.
When sustainable clothing brands opt for sustainable production of clothes, they need to change their production, distribution, and marketing strategies for betterment. They can also incorporate more sustainable consumption patterns.
Some companies offer fashion second-hand or have rental systems for renting clothes and apparel. While some others create clothing of top quality that has long-lasting style and durability. Also, some others have set up collection and recycling systems that reinforce increased textile recycling.
Now, that we have a brief idea about sustainable fashion. Let’s have a closer look at how will it benefit the world.
How Will Sustainable Fashion Products reform the world?
The ultimate goal of sustainable fashion is to have a system that doesn’t harm the environment. Below are the ways how sustainable fashion will transform the world.
Sustainable Fashion Products save natural resources
Almost 85% of the textile production result in junkheaps. To decompose these landfills, may take nearly 200 years. It leads to a huge waste of resources and increased environmental pollution. Sustainable fashion uses recycled fibers to reduce pressure on virgin resources and focus on the increasing problem of waste management.
Reduces the emission of Carbon
Most of the clothes produced are petroleum-based and made out of fossil fuel that includes polyester, acrylic, & nylon. These materials consume more energy during their production when compared to natural & recycled fibers. As sustainable fashion uses recycled fabrics, it requires less or no chemical treatment, less water, energy, and no pesticides to grow. These environmentally-sound fabrics have a positive impact on the planet.
The fashion industry kills millions of animals every year to produce trending clothes. A study predicts that the leather industry needs to slaughter 430m cows annually by 2025 to produce trending wallets, handbags, and shoes. Sustainable fashion has begun to adopt cruelty-free alternatives. For example, bags are made out of recycled seatbelts, plant-based compostable sneakers, silk created from yeast, and bio-fabricated vegan wool. The leather alternatives come from pineapples using their leaves in the harvesting process.
Relies on less water
Water is the major resource for the fashion industry. A study shows that nearly 2,700 liters of water are used to produce one t-shirt. Cotton is highly dependant on water. Sustainable fashion uses organic cotton that uses 91% lesser water when compared to conventional cotton. A recent report shows an increase of 31 percent in organic cotton production over the previous year, making it the second-largest harvest on record after 2009/10. Various other fabrics like linen, hemp, & recycled fibers like recycled cotton use little to no water during production.
Clothing is a major necessity in our daily lives. So, it’s more critical to adapt to sustainable fashion. Although we cannot control the ongoing practices in the fashion industry, we can educate ourselves and create awareness among people about sustainable fashion and encourage them to opt for the same. Not just the consumers but the fashion retailers and top brands should also contribute towards producing sustainable fashion products.
Sustainable fashion brands should also educate their consumers about the increased prices of clothing and its impact on environmental conditions. The day is not far when the consumers will be able to use the tags and barcodes to check the content of the garment and make sustainable choices.