What is fast fashion?

We have already talked in the previous post about how we are in a period of the year where consumerism is promoted more. From the end of November to the end of January, numerous discount campaigns focus mainly on the fashion sector.

In Spain we have some very revealing data:

In total, we buy an average of 34 pieces of clothing a year and throw away between 10 and 14 kilos of textile waste (Asirtex). 6 out of 10 citizens buy clothes every month and most of them don’t know what they are made of (Los españoles y su armario, AEG).

Have you ever wondered why the way we consume clothes has changed? Have you heard the term fast fashion? Keep reading, we’ll explain it.

Fast fashion, what is it?

Before, about 20-30 years ago, buying clothes was limited to the change of seasons or basically what we were wearing was no longer useful. However, since the end of the 90s, numerous low-cost clothing chains began their peak.

Since then, clothes became cheaper, the cycle of trends faster (even being capable of including new products every 2 weeks) and buying clothes became also a hobby, which, now, we can do even from home.

Fast fashion can be defined as a model of mass production of “low-cost” clothing that quickly adapts the catwalk trends to meet consumer demand.

So, what impact does this way of producing clothes have on our planet?

Is fast fashion sustainable?

The way it is produced has an environmental impact. The fashion sector, for example, is responsible for 10% of total global emissions, but that is not the only reason why it is not sustainable.

Among the environmental impacts, we find that the energy sources used to produce the garments are not renewable. In addition to this, they tend to make intensive use of water, which also becomes contaminated by the chemicals used in the manufacturing process. On the other hand, many times they use materials that take hundreds of years to decompose and end up releasing microplastics into our oceans (nylon or polyester, for example)

Tips to avoid buying fast fashion

If after reading this you want to enjoy fashion in a more sustainable way, we give you some ideas:

  • Take care of the clothes you already have so that they last longer.
  • Support sustainable and transparent clothing brands.
  • Buy second-hand.
  • Use clothing rental platforms for special occasions.
  • Make a “swap party” with friends to exchange clothes you are no longer wearing.