How Many Times Do We Wear Fast Fashion Garments?

How Many Times Do We Wear Fast Fashion Garments?

Fashion is one of the world’s premier polluters. Fashion production produces immense carbon emissions through pumping water to irrigate cotton fields, harvesting machinery and general transport as well as pesticide-based petroleum-based pesticides – emissions which will only continue to rise and clash directly with global climate goals.

There are also significant environmental, economic, and social ramifications of fast fashion. Garments produced by fast fashion companies tend to be made from cheap materials that cannot be recycled, leading to pollution, waste production, planned obsolescence, toxic chemical exposure for wearers and sometimes abusive labor practices among manufacturers.

Fast fashion clothing often has a quick turnover rate, meaning clothes are worn only seven to ten times before being discarded, without being reused, recycled, or composted – most wind up ending up in landfills or incinerators.

Clothing and textiles stored in landfills are an enormous source of microplastics, which leak into marine environments as they decompose, polluting rivers, lakes and streams with pollutants from degradation. Incinerators that burn clothing as part of a way out also produce significant air and water pollutants resulting from burning clothing to get rid of it.

Consumers desire the ability to keep up with fashion trends, and influencers, celebrities, and fast fashion brands make this possible for them. Unfortunately, following these trends comes at a steep cost; fast fashion brands can turn out new clothing collections every two weeks while simultaneously adapting existing items with style changes to match current fads.

To do this, they must cut corners in production and supply chain processes – and these shortcuts have an adverse impact on the environment. The use of cheap yet toxic textile dyes requires vast quantities of clean water; approximately 2,700 liters are required just to produce one cotton t-shirt, straining freshwater resources even further in regions already struggling with water scarcity.

Garments made of synthetic fabrics like nylon and polyester shed microfibers every time they’re washed, creating an incalculable amount of waste that wildlife may consume before being passed back on to us causing health problems and disrupting natural ecosystems.

In order to limit its negative impacts, the fashion industry must regulate itself. This involves reducing emissions and waste production, increasing garment sustainability, and upholding fair and ethical labor practices. As part of global climate targets, fashion must halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2030; consumers can help do their part by selecting sustainable brands when buying clothing; they can donate used garments directly or invest in quality long-lasting pieces that can easily be repaired or repurposed themselves.