Have you ever thought about how your clothes were made, or how your clothing choices affect your life and the lives of others?
Well, you are not alone. I have also been curious about the impact of fashion and I know a lot of people are too - given the rise of this industry.
In fact, fashion is one of the largest and fastest-growing industries in the world. According to commonthread.co, apparel, accessories, and footwear are the number one ecommerce sector in the world with a global market value of $759.5 billion in 2021.
Knowing this, it’s disheartening to be reminded that so much of what we wear is made in conditions that are unethical. And though many consumers have already become conscious of this, ethical fashion is still a new concept in the minds of most shoppers.
If you are like me who loves clothes, ethical fashion is something so many want to support, but it’s also something that seems difficult to define. So what is ethical fashion?
Ethical fashion defined
Ethical fashion is fashion that aims to reduce the negative impact on people, animals, and the planet, as defined by Ethical Made Easy.
It is a term for the growing number of people who want to know not only how their clothes were made but where they come from, who made them and how they were treated, and what the impact was on the environment.
Ethical fashion is just a fancy way of saying “better for the environment and better for people.” It's not necessarily expensive, and it's completely worth it.
Ethical fashion not only considers the impact of using materials to make clothing, but it also considers the impact of production and consumption. The process is not simple, because it involves a number of steps that vary depending on the type of material used to produce the garment.
The first step in producing ethical fashion is to determine if the material used is sustainable. For example, organic cotton is a growing industry that provides farmers with seeds and training for their farms as well as a fair wage for their crops.
Once the material has been chosen, it is also important to take into consideration where the product was produced and who made it. Wages are considered, as well as ethical treatment from beginning to end. For example, organic cotton is produced by farmers who have fair access to markets and have fair wages for their crops.
Importance of ethical fashion
Consumers are becoming more aware of the importance of ethical fashion because of its potential harm to the environment and people around the world. The long term effects of producing fast fashion are detrimental to us all, and we're already seeing just how bad they can be.
The idea is that we’ve all become so used to fast fashion that we no longer think about what it costs others to make our clothes, or how much waste it creates, or where it goes when we toss it out.
In other words, that old T-shirt has a lot more going on than just its color and fit. It’s also the story of its materials, the workers who made it, the impact of making it and disposing of it. And knowing those things can mean an entirely different kind of fashion: ethical fashion.
Making the shift
So, the next time you’re shopping for clothes, try to think about how your choice affects the world around you.
Making a change to the way you shop for clothing can be difficult, and this change does not necessarily mean purchasing fewer clothes. Instead, it involves shopping for better quality clothes in a manner that is less harmful to the environment and the people involved in producing your clothing.
Caring about the clothing we wear is nothing new. Being conscious of what we put on our bodies and how it impacts the world isn’t just a trend, but rather a more modern way of saving our planet. Our clothing has always been a means of self expression, but now it’s also a voice for social responsibility.
A shift in thinking like this can amount to huge changes for the earth and its inhabitants, so what you buy really does have a bigger impact than you might think.