What happens when it’s fast, disposable and cheap?
When it comes to clothes, perhaps you should ask: what is the size of your waste?
You know you have clothes in your closet: you wear this shirt for less than $10 because it looks cool, or you wear only one piece of clothing, and then it’s out of fashion.
Fashion week is faster than ever. The December quartz article reveals how fashion brands such as Zara, Gap and Adidas are introducing new styles more frequently, what many in the industry call “fast fashion.” Mass-produced clothing has also become more affordable, attracting consumers to buy more.
According to CIT, a financial holding company, top fast fashion retailers have grown 9.7 percent a year over the past five years, outpacing the 6.8 percent growth of traditional clothing companies.
Fashion is big business. Estimates vary, but one report puts global industry at $1.2 trillion, spending more than $250 billion in the United States alone. In 2014, the average household spent an average of $1,786 on clothing and related services.
More variety means more buying – which can lead to more waste. In her book, Elizabeth klein, a journalist, writes that cheap fashion costs a lot: wearing it once can damage the environment and the economy. We tend to deal with cheaper, mass-produced fashion rather than more expensive fashion.
“We don’t necessarily have the capacity to deal with this,” Mr. Lewis said. “The pace of processing has not kept up with all the problems we have, and that’s the problem.”
According to the statistics of the environmental protection department, 15.1 million tons of textile wastes were produced in 2013, of which 12.8 million tons were waste.
One way for developed countries to get rid of excess clothing is to donate it to developing countries. According to the United Nations, the United States is the largest exporter of used clothes, while the major importers of used clothes are India, Russia and Pakistan.
But as a strong dollar for cheap clothing and supplies in Asia, some fear that export demand for second-hand clothing will decline – forcing developed countries to seek new treatments after consuming textile waste.
Fast fashion and the disposable culture have also hurt sorting companies that export used clothes.
Adam Baruchowitz, the founder of the wearable collection in New York City, collects old clothes and sells them to sorting companies. The companies then classify their clothes, separating those that will be made into other low-grade fiber products from those that will be exported.
“The most valuable part of the sorting business is selling used clothing that can be reused,” says Mr Baruhorwitz. But if quality is a problem, more collections may have to go to the shredder rather than the second-hand clothing market.
“It’s very bad for the environment,” he said. “This fast fashion culture is very harmful and it affects the secondary market because these clothes haven’t been used for a long time.” “I can’t say for sure, but second-hand H&M may have fewer quality requirements than better clothing, and I get all this from fast fashion, and I hear it will hurt them from customers.”
Do retailers’ recycling programs encourage consumption?
Some clothing retailers have announced plans to collect clothing from customers to recycle, sell or duplicate clothing. For example, H&M has allowed customers to carry unwanted clothing in 2013 – converting it into renewable textile fibers for new products – with the aim of “dividing clothes into landfills”. Patagonia also recycles and sells used Patagonia products in its stores.
It involves extending the concept of producer responsibility, which means that manufacturers must consider the afterlife of their products.
But does it really encourage more consumerism? For many stores, customers can get store credit and coupons to send old clothes.
“If you bring it back to the store, you’ll see something new, you’ll give me a discount, and I’ll have a purchase opportunity that I might not have had before, because you sent me back to your store. “The business is very smart,” Mr. Lewis said.
However, this concept can encourage different ways of thinking: if manufacturers must consider how to make the most of a product after it has worn out, it may encourage them to start designing products that can be easily opened up, improved quality, or biodegradable, for example.
It’s fast fashion to strike at the bottom.
A year ago, some users started uploading YouTube video, exchanging clothes with friends. Either way, they showed how to make new styles out of old clothes.
“Today is the day of the fashion revolution and I decided to run for office by making the ‘Haulternative’ video,” CutiePieMarza of YouTuber said in her video. She is exchanging clothes with YouTuber grav3yardgirl in Texas.
Grav3yardgirl from Youtuber, Texas, posted her video, exchanging clothes with Britain’s Youtuber CutiePieMarza as part of an “alternative” campaign.
“It’s part of the job, part exchange A month ago she asked me if I could be part of this awesome project, “says grav3yardgirl in her video. “I think this is largely what is happening in the UK.”
Haulternative is a substitute for the traditional long-distance video, which allows users to post the latest video on video.
It’s part of a movement to educate people about the origins of our clothing — and the waste of consumer habits.
“It’s another option that focuses on how people do different jobs, how people don’t need to buy new clothes to update your wardrobe,” said co-founder of the Carry Somers movement. “It encourages people to pay more attention to shopping.”
Instead of buying new clothes regularly, the campaign suggests buying old clothes or changing clothes from an antique shop. The fashion revolution week will be held on April 18 at solstice 24, encouraging participants to upload their “replacement” video this year.
Some companies are experimenting with new ideas. For example, the rent is used to rent branded clothing to pay monthly rent to customers. Those who care about waste accumulation jump to the opposite idea: instead of buying cheap clothes, which are slightly more expensive than buying them, the quality is good and may extend your life. Tom Cridland’s 30-year sweatshirt is an example.
“I think clothes, because we’re a consumer culture, it’s hard to say I don’t buy anything,” Mr. Lewis said. “We may slow down our purchases.”