FROM FAST FASHION TO CONSCIOUS CONSUMPTION
Celina Geigenberger/ March 2021
Our time is characterized by speed, be it through new technologies, digitalization, or globalization. The fashion world is also moving and changing fast. People are buying more clothes than ever. Since 2000, sales of new clothing have more than doubled and more than a hundred billion new pieces are produced each year.
Every week, major players in the fashion industry launch new collections, more than their consumers could ever wear. This business model is called fast fashion. Fast fashion boosts sales because customers stop by the brand more often, find new pieces, and buy them on the spur of the moment.
Meanwhile, our beloved new trends consume vast amounts of resources, poisoning ecosystems and, in turn, the livelihoods of millions of people. According to a January 2018 estimation by the journal Nature Climate Change, the fashion industry's resource consumption is expected to triple by 2050 compared to the year 2000. A single pair of jeans, for example, requires around 7000 litres of water in production. Of course, low prices encourage people to buy, but what usually falls by the wayside is long-lasting quality. Some of the cheaply produced and cheaply offered garments show flaws after a very short time and are quickly discarded without a guilty conscience.
Every German buys an average of 60 new items of clothing every year, one in five of them is hardly ever worn. In Germany alone, approximately 390,000 tons of textile waste are created each year. Nowadays, there are already many innovative brands that you should support in order to reduce the demand for fast fashion items.
5 SMALL STEPS FOR CONSCIOUS CONSUMPTION
1. Consider buying basic items in a more durable quality.
2. Be more aware of trends and ask yourself whether you will still be able to enjoy the item in six months' time.
3. Check if the same product can be found at a more sustainable manufacturer
4. Sell old clothes on online or offline platforms, such as Vinted
5. Before you dispose of a garment: repair old pieces, swap clothes with friends or donate them, for example online via Creating space with heart
With small but significant changes like these, we can also influence a positive development as consumers. Consuming more consciously not only saves money, but also our environment.