As promised, I am back this week with the second edition on the disastrous impact of fashion on the planet. This is Week-II of a series on Fashion, and we began with cosmetics in Week-I.
Multiple times a year the world witnesses a "Fashion Week" in the different fashion capitals of the world. We see models walking up and down the runway showcasing the latest collections put together competitively by different fashion designers.
What we cloth ourselves with gives away quite a bit about ourselves. Where we belong in the social order. Haute Couture and high street fashion alike compete relentlessly to flood the markets with the latest fashion for seasons. And trends keep changing within a blink of an eye. Fast fashion is on the rise even as sustainability is the mantra on everyone's lips. People eagerly consuming more than they need at lower prices is called is called "fast fashion". It is when the design, creation and marketing of clothes is done at an extremely fast pace using cheap material at low cost to make the latest trends immediately available to customers.
Increasingly people, occupied in keeping up appearances, are becoming ashamed of being seen in the same outfit twice. At what cost are we all trying to constantly keep up with what these industries dictate as fashionable bests?
The fashion industry is responsible for huge amounts of carbon emissions, microplastic pollution, air water and soil pollution. The synthetic material used to make fabric are major pollutants while also making recycling a challenge.
It causes huge environmental damage as well as affects the lives of the workers. The fashion industry is known to be guilty of child labour and notorious for its sweat shops. Third world countries have become the hubs of such malpractices. Due to the chemicals and unfavourable working conditions the workers suffer from skin and lung diseases as well as body aches. They are treated very poorly which causes mental trauma as well.
Be considerate towards our planet while keeping up with changing trends. Think about all the discarded clothes lying unused just because apparently it has gone out of fashion and is therefore "uncool" to be seen in. There is nothing wrong with being fashionable but KNOW THIS THAT IT IS HIGHLY FASHIONABLE TO LIVE SUSTAINABLY TRULY AND NOT MERELY DO LIP SERVICE.
To all the celebrities, models, influencers and anyone who has an audience out there, BE AN EXAMPLE! Teach your audience and followers that it is OKAY to wear the same dress, shirt, top, trousers etc multiple times. Believe in upcycling. There is nothing wrong in reducing, reusing and recycling. Partner up with, endorse and support only sustainable brands. Use your power to bring about a positive change!
As a consumer it is our duty to ensure that the brands we purchase from have their own environmental and social standards.
Here are a few resources to get you started: