A growing trend seems to be “disposable fashion.” Disposable fashion is the idea of high-end looking, cheap clothing that people tend to buy often and dispose of often. This is not only an environmental issue with so much textile waste going to the landfill but it’s also an ethical problem.
Last month was the two-year anniversary of the Bangladesh factory collapse. So have things improved for the second largest clothing exporter?
“Two years after the tragedy, major efforts are underway to prevent another disaster like the one at Rana Plaza. More than 200 international clothing brands, such as H&M, Zara, Walmart and Gap, have pledged to make Bangladesh’s factories safer.
About 2,700 out of 3,500 export factories in the country have been inspected under three big initiatives:Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety, Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety, and National Tripartite Plan on Fire Safety and Structural Integrity.” –NPR
These inspections are very important and a good step but the question still reminds, will the factories make the changes? Making a factory compliant can cost more than $1 million. And there have been stories of employees being threatened or beaten for joining unions.
I love clothes, you won’t see me pinning capsule wardrobe articles or becoming a minimalist when it comes to clothing. However, I know I need to make better choices when it comes to my clothing choices.
Buying made in the USA or other countries with labor laws can help, though there are still illegal sweatshops in the USA and other countries. Choosing Fair Trade items is a really good option. You will likely spend a bit more but Fair Trade ensures safe and ethical working conditions.
Since I enjoy vintage fashion buying vintage is a really good option. This is also the most environmentally-friendly choice. And even if you don’t like vintage fashion you can still buy used. It’s an ethical way to get cheap fashion. I’ve also started using Le Tote, it’s a clothing rental service and it’s a great way to try new clothes without added waste. Be sure to read my Le Tote review if you are interested.
Another way to help change the clothing industry is by supporting the efforts of Fashion Revolution’s #WhoMadeMyClothes. They are asking people to ask brands to be honest about who is making their clothes and how they are being treated.
So join the Fashion Revolution and start rethinking fashion. You don’t have to be perfect, every shift in purchases makes a difference!