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Can Fast Fashion Be Sustainable

fashion & stylenews

29 March
0 Comments

 

Sustainable fashion is defined as apparel that is environmentally friendly and ethically made, while fast fashion is the opposite, inexpensive clothing, often replicated and quickly available, copying the latest trends seen on fashion shows and catwalks.

 

With the demand not only from consumers but manufacturers as well, to transform the fashion's supply chain and move to sustainable fashion, the idea of the circular economy is being pushed to the surface. The circular economy strives to create a new definition for growth while putting a focus on positive social benefits. This model empowers sharing, reuse, repair, remanufacturing, refurbishment, and recycling, so there will be one closed system with minimal resource consumption, waste as well as emissions and pollution.

 

Brands show how it should be done

 

And while the world push for a sustainable approach throughout the whole fashion industry, some brands and companies are setting the perfect examples on how it should be done:

 

Patagonia makes sure it donates 1% of the overall company's annual sales to good causes. Leading with this example, in 2002, its founder Chouinard co-founded a non-profit called 1% for the Planet. The idea is by joining, every company pledge towards donating 1% of their sales as well.

 

Gucci is on a 10-year mission. By 2025, the brand wants to decrease its greenhouse gas emissions by 50%. Their sustainable business model makes sure to account for transportation, distribution, fuel, business flights, as well as energy-related emissions.

 

When it comes to Toms, their sustainable approach is visible through their Earthwise products. For a product to be "Earthwise," one main component must contain sustainable materials at a certain percentage. Plus, Toms is a B-Corp-certified brand, meeting the highest standards of environmental and social performance, accountability, and transparency. They commit 1/3 of the profits towards creating equity at a grassroots level.

 

The Pearl Source takes a slightly different approach. As women still face huge challenges in their daily life, the brand devotes a part of its business earnings to women's educational, financial, and entrepreneurial empowerment. Through its Power Pearl Fund, all NGO partners acquire a percentage of every sale.

 

H&M Garment Collecting program is the biggest of its kind. Rolled out in 2013, every year they expand their impact. In 2019, H&M collected 29,005 tones of textiles and clothes, which is equivalent to 145mil T-shirts. The program is simple as it can be. You take any unwanted clothing or textile, no matter the brand or condition, to their stores, hand it at the cash desk, and get a thank you voucher. H&M after that makes sure what you brought is selected for either re-wear, re-use, or recycling.

 

The push for sustainable business activities is increasing. Many brands will soon find themselves at a crossroads where they need to choose to either follow customers' desires for an eco-business or simply close. The window for choosing is slowly but surely closing, so proactive brands will be the biggest winners in the end.

 

 

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