Published: Nov. 9, 2020 By

Fast fashion is inexpensively made clothing that is quickly produced and styles are quickly cycled through. Fast fashion brands produce around 52 collections every year. The rise of fast fashion has led to various environmental and social issues:

  1. Fast fashion is the third largest manufacturing industry, producing 8% of global carbon emissions, more than international aviation and shipping combined. 
  2. Three out of five fast fashion items end up in the landfill.
  3. Fast fashion brands use open-loop production cycles, meaning the waste produced is dumped straight into water and land. This has led to fast fashion being responsible for ⅕ of industrial water pollution

3. Fashion accounts for 20% to 35% of the microplastics going into the ocean. 

4. Over half of fast fashion workers do not make a living wage and the working environment is often dangerous. An undercover investigation of the fast fashion company Boohoo revealed its factory workers made as little at $4.40 an hour despite a minimum wage of $11.40 an hour for workers over age 25. 

Instead of fast fashion, consider shopping second hand at Goodwill or local thrift stores or from sustainable clothing brands (an extensive list of these can be found here) to help our planet and limit the unfair treatment of fast fashion laborers. 

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