28 Apr Ethical Clothing In Australia – Featured as a Subject Matter Expert on National Storage website
I was honoured to be questioned by the team at National Storage, as a subject matter expert on ethically sustainable clothing in Australia recently. Here is a snippet of the article below.
This just in: You can look fashionable as hell while supporting the environment and the workers who made your stylish new outfit.
While we all love being on trend, the true cost of updating our wardrobes weekly with unethical clothing or ‘fast fashion’ is uglier than last season’s fluffy mules.
An IBISWorld report found Australia’s fast-fashion sector grew 19.5% over 5 years to $AUS1.8 billion in 2017-18. That’s a staggering amount of support fuelling the unethical manufacturing of clothing.
The good news is you can do your part to put an end to unethical fashion without sacrificing style.
We reached out to Angela Bell, National Manager of Ethical Clothing Australia (ECA), and Bernadette Payne, personal stylist and founder of That’s My Style, to get some insights on the impacts of unethical clothing.
The Negative Impact of Unethical Clothing
Angela explains, “The negative impacts of unethical clothing are expansive, but for those working in the industry it can mean anything from underpayments to unsafe working conditions, modern slavery, sexual harassment, and human trafficking.”
If the name ‘unethical’ clothing isn’t enough to turn you away from the sales, these damaging effects should be.
Harm to the Environment
Fast fashion is all about getting new products into the store quickly and at affordable prices to encourage people to buy more. The goal is to get consumers to buy as many products as possible, as quickly as possible.
We’re no longer dressing for Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter. Instead of just two seasons in a year, the ever-changing trends and new products available in store every week mean we’re pressured to dress for 52 ‘micro-seasons’ a year.
“Fast fashion brands will continue to produce cheap clothing that doesn’t last,” Bernadette states. “This means consumers will have to keep buying new trends and treat their clothes as disposable. So much ends up in landfill.”
Research by YouGov shows 3 in 10 Aussies have thrown away clothing after wearing it just once, and 4 in 10 Aussies have thrown unwanted clothing in the bin.