Many of us have been made aware of the environmental dangers that come with the products we buy, or in this case, wear. That's why thinking about buying sustainable fashion is important. Here at Worn In Wardrobe we are passionate about sustainability and wanted to share some quick information about why we should care about sustainable fashion, as well as how to shop sustainably in the hopes that more people will become more aware of their habits and be able to change them for the better.
What is sustainable fashion & why does it matter?
The term "sustainability" is finding its way into our everyday lives much more often now. From social media, TV, packaging and more, you'll see more companies are making a conscious effort to be more sustainable and make you aware of this. Unfortunately, alongside all of this marketing, there is also a lot of greenwashing that happens.
If you're new to the world of sustainability within fashion and haven't come across the term greenwashing, greenwashing refers to
"The unjustified and misleading claims from a brand that their products are actually more environmentally friendly than they really are".
Sustainability is a term and effort you can apply to almost everything with the ultimate goal of taking care of the world we live in alongside everything and everyone in it for the generations to come. When we are presented with an item of clothing which is considered "sustainable" it should be eco-friendly, ethically made and long-lasting.
Why should you care about sustainable fashion?
We could care about how our actions in this wasteful world are affecting the planet. As humans are now consuming 4 times more clothing now compared to the last 20 years landfills are being overwhelmed with hundreds of thousands of tonnes of clothes every year.
We buy more clothes than ever and sometimes never wear them! But even the ones we do wear, we still only wear them a couple of times. It's clear to see how shopping habits, the accessibility to buy fast fashion and social media influences can explain fast fashion's explosive growth over the last 20 years.
But we can't have all of these cheaply-made clothes, without having all of their waste, pollution and depletion of natural resources.
Water, microplastics and energy are huge factors in fast fashions, with it requiring 700 gallons of water to make 1 cotton shirt and 2,000 gallons of water to make 1 pair of jeans! With statistics like that it's clear to see why the fashion industry is the 2nd largest consumer industry of water.
It doesn't end there though as it is also the 2nd largest polluter of water in the world as the dying processes leave thousands of gallons of contaminated water dumped into rivers and streams.
Sustainability also takes into account the social issues and human rights violations that come with this ruthless industry. We all have the power to help this issue, and it doesn't mean visiting poor working conditions and being present to the issues. But being mindful and as consumers, we can stop supporting this industry and avoid fast fashion by starting to support sustainable brands or shopping preloved.
How to shop to create a sustainable wardrobe.
There are so many different ways you can be involved with sustainable fashion. A lot of the time, you probably already are doing something fashion positive without even knowing it!
- Sustainable Brands: Our high streets are filled with well-known stores now doing their bit for the planet. Stores such as H&M, Marks and Spencers, Mango, and Cath Kidson as well as online retailers such as ASOS.
- Buying Preloved: Switch to buying preloved! The most sustainable garment is the one that already exists. This couldn't be more true and preloved clothes are for sure kicking fast fashion's butt at the minute.
- Pieces You Intend to Love for Years: We aren't saying you can't buy anything new and we aren't saying it needs to be a bargain, but if you're planning on purchasing to love for a long time make sure that the quality is up for the test. You're planning to love it for years, so it needs to stand the test of time. If you buy something cheap and poorly made, you'll find you'll end up having to replace it sooner than you want to.
- Your Closet: Sometimes you just need to set some time aside to go through your wardrobe and rediscover items you fell in love with that haven't seen daylight in a while. You may have some items which may have a little tear, may need a new button or look a bit tatty that you've hung back up, but never looked at since. It could simply be a task of setting some time aside and going through these items and doing a little bit of DIY! A few new buttons and shaving some bobbles of these arms of a blazer could have you falling back in love with them all over again.
So There It Is...
All in all, when it comes to fashion sustainability, it's better to know just a little bit than to have no idea at all. Hopefully, this article has given you a better understanding of what sustainable fashion is, why you should care and how you can support sustainability.
Remember to research brands before you put your money down. If a company doesn't practice sustainability, don't buy from that brand. Let the market take care of them. And always keep in mind that buying sustainable fashion is not the only way to be a good consumer; your decisions matter, whether we are talking about sustainable fashions or not.