In a world that’s constantly changing, we are trying to adapt to the times. The fashion industry has had to morph to fit current consumer needs. Technology is coexisting alongside it. There is a need for sustainability in fashion and technology, and both have combined as consumer needs shift.
Learning something new
One of the ways technology is helping consumers, and consequently the fashion industry, is by teaching us about sustainability. We are open to an incredible plethora of information about the challenges the fashion industry is posing for the planet.
The main one is the production and consumption of fast fashion. I wouldn’t know what fast fashion was if it wasn’t for Twitter and Instagram. I’d still be oblivious to the damage my choices were having on the natural world.
For those who are unsure about what fast fashion is, it is fashion that is seen on the catwalk and quickly produced to capture the current trends. The problem with it is that a lot of companies use cheap, toxic textile dyes to produce the clothes to save money and time. This has a detrimental impact on the natural world.
The fashion industry is responsible for being the second-largest polluter of clean water globally. This is aggravated by the production of fast fashion. There are also other problems with the production of fast fashion, such as the makers of the clothes being paid low wages to cut costs. Battered Women’s Support Services have written an article about it here which furthers the conversation about sustainability in fashion and technology.
The joys of sustainability
Depop is an app and website that is allowing people to be more considerate when consuming fashion. I used to be nervous about buying from Depop because you can’t try on the clothes before you purchase.
This fear was eradicated when I found some incredible pieces for a really good price.
There are so many sides to Depop and you can find most clothing and accessories on there. This includes original vintage pieces that are often second-hand. They’re therefore more ethical than buying direct from a fast fashion company. I’ve found some of my favourite items on Depop and am always waiting to find my next purchase.
You can support small businesses if you decide to buy through places like Depop! There are thousands of sellers and you can pretty much find anything you’re looking for, all while supporting people who are trying to earn a living. The businesses are smaller but it doesn’t mean that the prices are higher than bigger fast fashion companies. They’re often very reasonable and the same amount you would pay in a charity shop.
I understand that shopping second-hand doesn’t work for everyone and some people would rather by their clothes new. However, through technology, second-hand shopping is starting to become more accessible to people who may have difficulty getting to sustainable shops if they want to.
Other technological options?
eBay is another way we can start to shop sustainably. Through technology, there are small businesses all over the world accessible just from your phone. There are not only fashion businesses operating on eBay, but businesses selling everything you can think of. It’s a great place to find hidden gems at good prices, and if you’re buying second-hand items then that’s even better.
I was introduced to a few sellers by a friend who is passionate about shopping ethically. I find eBay really useful because, similarly to Depop, you can see feedback which indicates strengths and weaknesses that the sellers have. This way, you can see if the products are good value for money or ethical, and make your decision influenced by different opinions.
Developments in sustainability
Technology has made it easier for us to shop sustainably. We now have ethical fashion at our fingertips, making it easier for us to choose to buy into ethics rather than fast fashion. As we adapt to the times, the fashion industry is adapting with us, bringing sustainable brands and technological advances to the forefront of the fight against fast fashion.
If you would like to read more about sustainable fashion, more articles can be found here.