By Julia M.
What is fast fashion? Fast fashion is a popular form of shopping which typically consists of cheap clothes that dominate online shopping. Most people partake in buying “fast fashion” clothes whether or not they know they do. Some people have heard of it, but don’t know how it started or the problems it causes in our environment.
How did fast fashion come to light? During the 1960s and 1970s, fast fashion began to gain popularity because it made clothing production quicker, easier and much cheaper. Then in the 2000s, fast fashion really picked up popularity because of online shopping. Many online shops used this form of fashion in order to gain customers and money. This cheap fashion made it easier to produce trending clothes quickly, further helping the industry grow.
What are the problems with fast fashion and how does it affect our environment? At first, fast fashion seems to be an efficient and affordable way of producing clothes. But if you dive a bit deeper, you’re soon to discover all the problems it causes. Firstly, the use of toxic dyes has led to pollution in our waters. According to the website Good On You, “Fast fashion’s negative impact includes its use of cheap, toxic textile dyes—making the fashion industry the one of the largest polluters of clean water globally, right up there with agriculture.”
Polyester is cheap and can be found in almost every clothing item. The problem with polyester is that it is a synthetic fiber made from forms of plastic. This means that microfibers can shed off of our clothes and travel into our waterways, to the ocean, and add to the growing amount of plastic already there. As stated in Good On You, “According to some statistics, in Australia alone, more than 500 million kilos of unwanted clothing ends up in landfill every year.” This means with the mass production of clothes, people tend to wear items for only a few uses then throw them out.
Overall, these are just a handful of the problems that fast fashion causes. With the growing rate of clothes and products made, the problems are piling up. We need to put an end to fast fashion in order to save our environment.