The Responsible Approach to Fashion
Fashion is a big part of your life, bigger than you might even imagine. The average person spends about $16 a month on clothes. Since you can spend that much on fashion, it’s vital to approach fashion responsibly.
It’s essential to start with the fact that all clothes are not produced ethically. Most people go to a store and buy clothes without thinking about how they were made or why they’re so cheap. Some companies, including those in America, find sneaky ways to hire labor in other countries where people are easy to exploit. They are forced to work longer hours without fair pay or health protections. Purchasing clothes from companies that do this helps propel the practice. You have the power to stop this and the power to buy clothes that were made using ethical practices. You can look for brands labeled Fair Trade, or you can look for the UNITE label on the clothes you purchase.
A person spending that much on clothes can seem excessive. This is especially true if you don’t know how much you spend in a month. You may be thinking you only do a little harmless shopping on the weekends, but it adds up. If you’ve never budgeted how much you spend on clothes, then it might be time to find out. You might find out that you’re spending more on clothes than you’re comfortable with, and if that’s the case, a change needs to be made. The good thing is there are effective solutions. You can use a credit card management app to monitor and control how much you spend on clothes and shoes. The money you end up saving on fashion can be spent elsewhere, or maybe it could be added to your savings account.
Clothing isn’t always made with the planet in mind. Some clothing like stretchy jeans contain traces of plastic that make it virtually impossible to recycle. This means these jeans end up in a landfill at some point, adding to the problem the planet hasn’t solved yet. Clothing made with polyester is not suitable. To produce this particular type of textile, producers have to use a lot of oil. If you are concerned about your carbon footprint, you want to avoid buying new clothes that aren’t environmentally friendly. The good thing is there are brands producing clothes more sustainably, from using the right kind of fabric like bamboo or hemp to just improving practices. Of course, you could also just commit to only buying used clothes since that’s technically recycling.
There’s no denying that fashion has used animals for fashion one way or another. Alpaca, angora, leather, suede, fur, cashmere, and silk are animal-sourced. This might trigger certain feelings in you if you know about the animal cruelty that exists. The reality is that you can’t do anything about that, but what you can do is support companies that are doing their best to provide alternatives to these types of fabrics. You can use these alternative fabrics and fashion choices to educate others on animal-friendly fashion and maybe even convince a few of your friends to give those options a chance, like vegan leather. Vegan leather is made from apple peels or pineapple leaves, which is pretty cool.
Focus on Repair
Look around your community, and you’ll notice there aren’t many shoe repair shops or clothing repair shops. The sad truth is that most people throw away clothes or shoes if they’re a little damaged or old. This isn’t a good thing, and you might be doing it yourself. People used to keep their clothes and shoes for a long time before throwing them away. Most people mended their clothes and shoes as often as possible. If you’ve never considered mending your shoes or clothes, it might be time to consider it. Those shoes or articles of clothing are things you love, and they just need to be repaired. Find a professional repair person even if they’re in the next town over and find out what they can do for you. Doing this will save you money, and you’ll be supporting a worthy industry.
As you can see, fashion can be approached more responsibly than you probably imagined. Doing this can feel a little overwhelming, and it will take some time to do the research, but you’ll feel better if you do.