Fast fashion – more concerning than fast food?

Fast fashion – the topic on everyone’s lips at the moment & I hold my hands up that I am a fashion lover and prolific consumer but have you ever stopped to think about the effect our “wear once” culture is having on the environment?

Recently and increasingly I’m becoming more aware of how my actions relate to this little planet of ours and whilst I’m in no way an eco warrior, I think it’s important that we all do our little bit. There is no planet B!

“Globally, we’re producing over 100 billion new garments from new fibres every single year, and the planet cannot sustain that,” states Lucy Seigle, a journalist specialising in environmental issues.

Before becoming more aware, my self confessed asos addiction and subsequent guilt was all about “can I actually afford these clothes?” but now, not only am I thinking about the price tag but I’m thinking about the bigger picture. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t be shopping, I’m simply saying that we should be thinking about the story behind each item. Thinking about how much of our planet’s resources have gone into it & then how much use we’re going to get out of it. After all, if the demand isn’t there then the fashion industry won’t need to be producing items on such a large scale. Is it really worth the 32 million Olympic swimming pools of water consumed by apparel companies each year for that top that you saw on someone else, kinda like but will only wear once or twice? or to put it into greater perspective, the 7,000 litres of water needed to produce that one pair of jeans that you don’t really need but look so good on the model? That’s the amount of water one individual will drink in 5 – 6 years!

We live in such a culture, especially with social media the way it is, of needing to fit in. Constantly needing to have the latest items. Being able to purchase things so quickly and sometimes even not having to pay for them until a later date. This has made us impatient and in some ways addicted to the instant gratification of being able to purchase something you see & like in a few clicks and then having it on your doorstep the next day. Great! But it doesn’t give us a chance to think. To think about if we really need it. To think about if we have something similar in our wardrobe already. Even, to think about if we really want it! We’ve all been there, or I certainly have, ordering something on a whim because it looks so good on someone’s insta. Then it arrives and you think “why the hell did I buy that?” But hey, it will look good for a photo & it only cost £15 so no point returning it..

I know that I am by no means as influential as many people out there but I strongly believe that looking after the planet is the responsibility of all of us and therefore every little helps. Personally, I’m going to try and shift the focus of my outfit posts & wardrobe styling from new bits to focusing on the pieces I already own and getting more creative & working on not feeling like a sack of potatoes when I’m wearing something that isn’t new. (Surely it’s not just me that feels like that? I don’t know why but I lose love & get bored so easily and that’s something I’m really determined to change!)

I’m actually glad that all of this has come to light. It’s a new perspective that I know so many, myself included, hadn’t thought about before and I really believe that it’s an area we can effect change. Spread the word, encourage each other to curb our fashion spending & inspire each other to make the most of the clothes we already own. After all, you bought those bits in your wardrobe because you loved them at the time!Love, Anna xox

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