An Intro to Fast Fashion by Teen Vogue

Image by Teen Vogue / YouTube

Image by Teen Vogue / YouTube

We are often asked “What exactly is sustainable fashion?” and to answer, that one must understand fast fashion. Fast fashion is the unsustainable speed of modern manufacturing; think Zara, H&M and TopShop.

These brands turnaround fashion collections at a rapid speed and at a low cost. Typically, the steep discount for consumers comes at a price for others, including the environment or those who make the goods. Cutting corners to reach unprecedented margins means cutting clothing quality, fair labor costs and environmental standards.

We now spend about 3% of our annual income on clothing compared to 10% in the 1950’s. We have an absurd amount of clothing because its seen as disposable.”
— The Problem With Fast Fashion | Teen Vogue

That is where is sustainable fashion enters: sustainable fashion can be defined as fashion production that is not harmful to nature and the environment, the people who make the goods or the community in which they are made. There are subcategories of how a consumer can recognize their personal values within sustainable fashion. Examples of these values are supporting vegan goods, recycled goods, zero waste brands and more. Each pillar of sustainability moves the collective fashion industry closer to a more sustainable model in the future.

Want to learn more about why fast fashion matters? Take a look at the below video produced by Teen Vogue.