Grab your coffee through the drive through. Order your food on Uber Eats. Get your morning news from Alexa. Buy your clothes via an app when offered a sale.
We need it fast and we need it now. I live this way because society functions this way. To keep up, we must adapt. But what do we do when we learn the consequences of this lifestyle?
I love fashion and have since I was a child. Recently I learned about the concept of “fast fashion.” “Fast fashion” is the clothing most Americans buy. It is seasonal, sold in most retail stores, made in factories overseas. You often have to donate it to Goodwill the next year. What you don’t realize is this fashion is impacting your life and our planet — and not in a positive way.
Fast fashion is bankrupting Americans, and I am included. Before I learned of an alternative, I would spend a couple hundred dollars a month for my daughter and myself. It was an addiction that soothed my low self-worth temporarily. Of course, not long after, my maxed out credit cards would slap me in the face, and the cycle would continue.
This cheap fashion is filling up our landfills. If it is not donated, it is thrown in the trash. Fashion is one of the top causes of pollution in our world.
And it isn’t just the landfills; it’s the cost. It is the expenses to make the fibers that are used for the clothing — the cost of extracting, processing, making, shipping and selling the clothing we so often wear sparingly.
We cannot ignore the horrendous working conditions many of the factory workers endure to make this fashion. This reality has been known for decades, yet it has not changed. We choose to turn our heads. We keep buying the clothing.
In fact, we buy more, and we do nothing because we don’t think there is a thing we can do. But there is an alternative. It has gained popularity in Europe and is being introduced in America.
The answer is sustainable fashion. Many brands of sustainable fashion are made from organic materials. These substances are not as harmful for the environment. In fact when put in the earth they are naturally reabsorbed. The fabric is true quality and the clothing lasts for decades if taken care of properly.
This kind of apparel is fair trade, meaning made by workers who are more likely to be treated fairly and ethically. The companies offer recycling programs. You send back items when you no longer want to wear them, and they will recycle the clothing properly; making new sustainable clothing or disposing it in ways that will not hurt the environment.
I’m changing the way I am buying my clothing. Replacing one piece of fast fashion with one piece of sustainable fashion as I can afford it. Slowly and mindfully without breaking my bank.
The good news is sustainable clothing is often the same price as fast fashion. You are sacrificing nothing.
I am taking the pledge to slow down. The time is now. Maybe you’d like to join me.
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