Sometime last month, I complimented this girl on her neck scarf and asked if she thrifted the piece because it was unique and stood out to me. She quickly replied with a grimace, “No. It’s from (insert brand name here – irrelevant). I like to buy new things — unless it’s vintage fur.” There were so many things that turned me off from this response, as would be an obvious reaction via my blog’s clear message and stance. Whenever I meet someone who is this misinformed I want to make sure that they understand the impact they are having by what they choose to support. If you are a lover of fashion, it is important to be aware of the circumstances in which you are involved in as an avid shopper. Being a blind and passive consumer is a huge epidemic in our country. Here is a quick overview via short answers given to three general/ commonly asked questions.
What is the issue with the above mindset? Most people have this misconstrued and erred view of sustainability as an unappealing way to dress because it means a wardrobe obtained by thrifting and clothing made out of hemp and recycled plastic. Knocking down this misconception, brands like Susi Studio, Matt and Nat, The Reformation, and Vaute Couture are examples of cute clothing that abides by eco-friendly practices. Green initiatives and innovations are the newest fashion trends. In addition, when it is revealed to you how fashion is the 2nd most polluting industry, on top of being one of the most corrupt industries, the impacts of your choices don’t become something to waive off. To further educate yourself about the truths of the fashion industry, check out the documentary, ‘True Cost.’
What is ethical and sustainable fashion? Ethical companies have practices in place that treat their workers fairly and pay them deserved living wages. Ethical companies that are above and beyond, also leave out animal skin, fur, and all byproducts in their clothes. Sustainable companies tend to create new textiles out of recycled fabrics to make their clothes, such brands include Reformation. They also suggest for their customers to apply eco-friendly clothing care efforts that have less of an impact on our environment.
What can we do as lover of fashion to better this situation? I doubt many of you have considered opting out of buying new things altogether – I don’t think I’ve even considered doing so. However, please note there are ways to go about it that won’t sacrifice your style or expression. We have to fix the way we shop. We must change our mindset. Whatever fashion means to you, we all have a responsibility as inhabitants of Earth to do whatever we can to save her. Invest in timeless pieces (slow fashion), go thrifting for trendier stylish pieces (check out apps like Poshmark and Depop or visit your local consignment store), and support sustainable and ethical brands such as the ones I listed in the first answer.
Photography by Neivy.
*100% Vegan. 100% Cruelty-free.