Within this past year, many more people have become aware of the dangers of fast fashion and what it is doing to our environment. Fast fashion refers to cheaply made clothing with high turnover rates. In other words, it is the trendy clothing we find in certain stores that are inexpensive but do not have the quality to last very long.
Fast fashion ranks second in the worldwide production of pollution, behind only big oil. At this time, fast fashion is only continuing to grow. However, fortunately, this epidemic is becoming more and more publicly known.
The insanely large amounts of resources that go into the production of clothing is shocking. For example, producing one pair of denim jeans uses over 900 gallons of water. This amounts to over 400 billion gallons of water every year just to make the jeans sold in the U.S. This often polluted water is then sent back to our rivers, lakes, and oceans.
Not only is fast fashion harmful to our planet, but it is seriously damaging the lives of those in under-developed countries who work in the factories that produce these clothes. The U.S. now produces only 3 percent of the world’s clothing, while 97 percent of production has been passed off to countries with few labor laws and rock-bottom minimum wage. The working conditions for these employees are often terrible.
The major problem is that a majority of consumers are attracted to the inexpensive prices and trendy styles that fast fashion produces. It is unclear when this system will finally slow down. However, there are solutions that can stop the destruction of the Earth and the destruction of the lives of those fast fashion factory workers.
What the world needs is more eco-friendly, affordable, and fashion-forward products and retailers. Such companies do already exist, but with little attention. The more this epidemic is publicly addressed, and the more eco-friendly fashion retailers created— the more consumers will be compelled to shop for quality, affordable, trendy clothing, that does much less harm to the Earth.
Christina Kelly often gives her insights and thoughts regarding the fashion industry. She currently is a public relations and fashion consultant, working with a wide variety of high-end clients. Combining an innate business sense with fashion and style helps make Christina Kelly a true asset to her clients and business partners.