Fashion is an art. Fashion allows individuality, growth and creativity. When putting on an outfit, your body is the canvas, and you can decorate it how you wish. When you put on an outfit you should feel unstoppable. However, with many changes having been made in the last century, one of those being the over consumption of fashion, that feeling of pure joy when putting on your favourite outfit is only temporary.
The brief history of fast fashion:
Fast fashion started to appear in the 90’s with brands like Zara and H&M becoming increasingly popular as well as modern society building a lifestyle around fashion. In the 2000’s the industry started to boom, making clothes a desire instead of a necessity due to trends changing continuously throughout the seasons. Over the last two decades there has been an increase of over 400% in the amount of fashion that we consume amounting to roughly 80 million new pieces of clothing every year.
Fast Fashion context:
In the modern society that we now live in, it is great that fashion is accessible and available to everyone. This allows everyone to keep up with the latest trends at an extremely cheap/affordable price. However, this shouldn’t cost the world, literally! Most people shop at fast fashion stores allowing them to keep up with the latest trends for an extremely cheap/affordable price even though the fast fashion industry contributes to around 10% of global emissions with 300,000 tonnes of used clothes either being burnt or buried in landfill each year! The way that the fast fashion industry is churning out clothes to keep up with the staggering demand, is not sustainable in the slightest.
How and why, we should combat fast fashion:
Avoiding fast fashion may seem quite daunting or even impossible for many people due to our lives being heavily based around the way we present ourselves hence why the demand for accessible fashion has dramatically increased. However, when masses of one style is being produced there is no individuality meaning that most of the time there’s nothing differentiating you from every other person that is wearing that item. Wearing mainstream clothes may be appealing but there are better ways of sourcing fashionable clothes, that may also help your bank account as well as your street credit. Here are three alternatives to fast fashion that I think would help you forget fashion and find your style:
Buy from charity shops – this must be one of the most fulfilling ways to buy clothes; you’re not contributing to fast fashion, you’re able to find unique pieces of clothing that may no longer be available and most importantly, your money is donated to the shops decided charity. I’m really struggling to find a reason as to why this isn’t the a great alternative!
Purchasing from eBay or Depop – this a great place to start you journey if you’re looking for something specific like a particular style or brand as anybody from anywhere in the world can sell their preloved clothing. Believe me, I’m sure you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for or better.
Hunting around vintage markets – now this may be for the more experienced second-hand purchasers as it does require some patience as there are rows of clothes that are just waiting to be found by their perfect owners. Vintage markets have EVERYTHING you never realised existed in terms of fashion. Most of the time you need to do some digging but it’s definitely worth it when you find that one of a kind piece that you’ve been searching endlessly for. Trust me when I say that nothing can beat that feeling!
The 3 steps listed above will have the ability to change your wardrobe and your style within a couple of purchases. Finding your style may take a while as it’s a big part of developing, realising who you are and who you want to be. All it takes is for a few staple pieces of clothing to be gathered and then you can slowly work your way around that, all whilst slowly edging away from the vicious fast fashion cycle. These are all small ways which can make your transition from a fast fashion consumer to a fabulous second-hand buyer a lot easier!