It’s no secret that fast fashion is wreaking havoc on the environment. The industry is based on disposable clothing and overconsumption, which leads to mountains of textile waste every year.
So if you want to find out how to break up with fast fashion, check out these tips to help you get started.
How to Stop Buying Fast Fashion
We all love a good deal, but when it comes to fashion, sometimes it’s better to spend a little more on fewer, higher-quality items. Not only will your clothes last longer, but you’ll also help reduce waste.
Also, try shopping less often. Rather than buying new clothes every time you see something you like, try sticking with the items you already have in your wardrobe. Maybe pair them with something you haven’t tried before to get a new outfit out of old clothes. Conveniently enough, reviewing what you already have is one of the steps towards creating a sustainable capsule wardrobe.
Even though not everyone has the budget to buy only sustainable fashion or chooses not to do so, we can all make an effort to stop buying as much and use the things we already have.
1. How to Avoid Fast Fashion
You can shop ethically and support businesses that are committed to sustainable and fair practices. Start by checking labels and certification logos to see if a clothing company is certified by a reputable organisation like the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).
You can also research a company’s policies on things like workers’ rights, environmental impact, and animal welfare. Those that are not part of fast fashion pay fair wages to their employees and focus on creating as little waste as possible during the making of their products. Most vegan clothing brands will satisfy all your sustainable fashion needs.
Finally, you can choose more sustainable fabrics. For example, choose natural fabrics over synthetic ones. Natural fabrics, such as cotton, linen, and wool, are made from plant or animal fibres and are biodegradable. They are also generally more durable than synthetic ones, so you can get more use out of them before they need to be replaced. But not even all synthetic fabrics are the same—learn more in our eco-friendly fabric guide.
2. What Brands Are Not Fast Fashion
There are many brands out there that are considered fast fashion alternatives. These include Pact, Patagonia, People Tree, and Vetta.
Pact is an ethical clothing company that focuses on sustainable and fair trade practices. Patagonia is famous for being a less unsustainable choice (as the brand likes to phrase it), along with People Tree. Vetta is a slow fashion brand that has timeless fashion pieces to wear for seasons to come. But there are more. In fact, we compiled a list of brands that are entirely focused on sustainability.
3. How Can Fast Fashion Consumers Become More Sustainable?
If you love fast fashion and don’t want to give it up, but still want to help the environment, you can make a few simple tweaks to your shopping habits.
Some of the world-famous fast-fashion chains now offer lines of clothing that are more eco-friendly and made out of organic materials. Alternatives to fast fashion can be quite pricey, but by choosing more sustainable items in fast fashion stores, you can lower the negative environmental effect of the fashion industry without breaking the bank.
We all have things we never wear in our wardrobes. Maybe they are out of fashion or maybe we outgrew them. But, instead of letting them just sit there, you can donate them to someone who would use them. If they look a bit too worn out, there are several disposal alternatives for clothes that can’t be donated.
4. How to Avoid Fast Fashion on a Budget
If you’re looking to save money and reduce your impact on the environment, shopping at second-hand stores is a great option. You can find high-quality clothing and accessories for a fraction of the price of new items. Plus, by shopping second hand you’re keeping these items out of landfills.
Another great way to not buy fast fashion even with a lower budget is to learn how to sew. Instead of just piling on new items, you can mend the ones you already have. You can also give them new life by adding an interesting detail or making something new out of them. Another option is to find a tailor.
One of our favourite tips for saving a few pounds on clothes and being environmentally conscious is to skip shopping altogether and host a clothes swap. Buy a bottle of wine, invite some friends you know have great taste, and exchange the things you are no longer using.
When facing the choice of slow fashion vs fast fashion, it’s wiser to choose the first one, because it produces less waste and uses natural materials.
By being a conscious consumer and focusing on quality over quantity, you can reduce the negative impact of the fashion industry and contribute to saving the planet for generations to come.