Sustainability in fashion has been a hot topic over the past few years. With the rise of fast fashion, many questions have been asked about the environmental impact of mass production in the industry. A lot of designers and fashion brands have since turned their attention to more sustainable methods of production, by using washing machines that use less water, for example, or using organic fabric dyes rather than synthetic ones. Similarly, many high street shops now also produce garments made from organic materials and offer ‘sustainable’ product lines. The efforts and steps to promote sustainability in fashion are moving in the right direction. There are also things that consumers can do to work towards a low-waste and more environmentally-friendly way of enjoying fashion.
What Can Consumers Do?
Anyone who is environmentally-conscious may wish to cut back on the amount of clothing they purchase each year or become more aware of the brands that are working towards a more ethical way of producing clothing. Minimising the effects of clothing production on the environment is something which many designers are considering. Other steps that consumers can take to create a wardrobe that is gentler on the environment include:
Research fashion brands to find those that have a focus on sustainability
Repair your clothing where possible, rather than discard it
Host a clothes swap with friends to exchange items you no longer wear
Shop in second hand or vintage shops
Donate clothing to charity shops
Some brands in the clothing industry focus their entire collection around sustainability and ethical means of production. It is good to research where clothing is sourced or produced and, if possible, the techniques and fabrics used in production. Consumers can vote with their hard-earned cash, essentially, and support companies that strive towards an ethical and sustainable way of producing clothing.
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