Why fast fashion is hereby cancelled


Wikimedia Commons

Working in a factory, this woman shows the terrible conditions in which these fast fashion companies provide for their employees. Thrift stores, hand me downs, and buying directly from a retailer are all ways you can shop sustainably.

Gabrielle Phillips, News/Editorials Editor

With spring break rapidly approaching, and summer right around the corner, people are wanting to replace their jeans for shorts and their sweatshirts for swimsuits. As teenagers, many times we want to stay with the current trends, which means buying new clothes every time the season changes. Clothes can be very pricey, especially if you have expensive taste (like me).  Clothing sites such as SHEIN, Zaful, and Wish are all stores that use fast fashion.
I know what you are thinking; what even is fast fashion? Fast fashion can be described as cheap, trendy clothing that turns sample ideas from the catwalk into garments at a super fast speed to meet consumer demand. So basically, when you see Emma Chamberlain, Charli Damelio, or Addison Rae wear something super cute but really expensive, fast fashion stores make these garments for cheaper in order to get business. This does not sound bad at first, but the damage it causes is terrible.
Fast fashion causes a lot of pollution. They make items while in the height of their popularity, then discard them after a few years. The cheap materials that are used can deteriorate over time, which also use toxic dyes and chemicals. This makes the fashion industry the second largest polluter of clean water globally (after agriculture). Fabric, such as polyester, can be derived from fossil fuels which ultimately impacts global warming and can shed microfibres that add to increasing levels of plastic in our oceans.
It also supports the idea that if you want to stay relevant looking, you have to wear the stuff that has just come out. In order to produce these items at such a fast rate, they hire workers with low wages and without adequate rights or safety. These workers are working long shifts and not getting paid enough to live off of. Junior Ashe’ Kelsey said, “While many people look to fast fashion for cheap clothes at a decent quality,  they don’t understand the harmful effects it has by supporting businesses who abuse their workers.”
There are many fast fashion brands, but sometimes it can be hard to spot them. How can you spot a fast fashion brand? Look for  thousands of styles which all touch on all the latest fashion trends, very short turnaround time between a catwalk and when it hits shelves, limited quantities of certain garments, and cheap materials. Stores that use fast fashion are Missguided, Nasty Gal, PrettyLittleThing, SHEIN, Boohoo, Forever 21, and H&M. Those are just a few examples of places that use fast fashion; you can always look them up too.
Do not get me wrong, I do understand that not all of us can afford name brands or really nice clothing items. I’ll admit, I have shopped from fast fashions stores before. I do think that buying items from these stores in moderation is okay because clothes are just so expensive now. This is also a much bigger issue which has to do with the economy and the fashion industry. I also recommend thrift stores; they are super sustainable, and many times they donate their money to foundations that actually need it. Thrift stores also recycle clothing, so the Earth is not getting an impact, and I recommend also donating your clothes to keep that cycle going.