Tip #2 for Sustainable & Ethical Fashion on a Budget: Shop Secondhand– Cat, Founder of restitchstance.com
Nowadays, we as shoppers are increasingly becoming more aware of the impact our personal choices have towards the environment. Things are being produced in ways that are eco-friendly, sustainable and ethical– vocabulary that is now pretty common, and actually quite trendy as well, when talking about fashion. This change in direction is a result of the harmful environmental impacts of the fashion industry, and a slowly growing trend from the fast-fashion linear business model – brands that offer items at very affordable prices – to a slower, more sustainable circular fashion industry.
Breaking down the problem
Textile World says that Australians are the one of the largest global consumers of textiles per capita, second only to the United States. The success of fast fashion is because of the desire for frequent outfit changes. Are you familiar with the quote “a closet full of clothes, but nothing to wear?” In fact, the average Australian woman purchases 27kg of clothing in a year and ends up using only around a third of her total wardrobe.
In that same year, a whopping 23kg is tossed and left to either decompose or burn in landfills, where toxins, leachate and greenhouse gases are produced, polluting our waters, soil and air. Also taking into consideration the impact producing fast fashion has on the environment, it’s no surprise that fashion has become the fifth most polluting industry in the world today. And with this realization, we can’t help but feel torn, especially because retail shops can be so cheap, especially when things go on sale. On the other hand, brands are divided between providing avenues for producing sustainable fashion while keeping business afloat in a competitive market where price points really do matter.
Given these facts, it is incredibly vital that we look for different ways to maximize our clothing use and reduce the impact that our fashion choices have on our planet. One solution is through circular fashion, which is basically carefully crafted and sourced items that are meant to last forever. Literally forever – once they’ve been used and reused, these items are meant to be disposed of and decompose in a way that causes zero harm to our environment!
Good On You is a company supporting this initiative. They are making it more efficient for consumers to make more informed purchases by providing a ranking of fashion brands in terms of how ethical or sustainable they are. Companies that produce clothing and whatnot in this manner tend to sell at a higher price point, given the more ethical manufacturing process, which not everyone has the luxury to afford. But that doesn’t mean people aren’t completely uninterested. Since the year 2018, Lyst found a 66% increase in search keywords related to sustainable fashion, and in Australia, around 50% of shoppers experience a conflicting feeling when they are unable to make purchases that align with their pro-sustainability values.
With celebrity figures such as Emma Watson and Meghan Markle promoting sustainable fashion, vintage stores and “thrifting” have become a growing trend in the fashion world. The Gumtree report even states that 86% of Australians prefer buying second-hand products over new ones. Millennials and Gen Zs are leading the group of “secondhand shoppers,” which continues to grow every year.
If you think about it, purchasing secondhand bags and clothing is a great way to combat the negative impact of fashion, while simultaneously getting to own quality, longer-lasting brands at a lower price point. There’s also that sense of personal satisfaction after of browsing through all these different items and finding “the one” that matches your own personal and unique style. From a seller’s point of view, it can be a way for people to make some money off of apparel, accessories or bags they no longer use, and use that money to buy other peoples preloved items! It’s a win-win situation for everyone, and a great place to start in the effort towards reducing fashion wastes.
Here at Modsie, we are aligning ourselves with this mission to direct consumers towards the path of sustainability through circular fashion. Modsie is an online marketplace with a selection of luxury pre-owned clothes and secondhand bags for both women and men. That’s right – a place where you can purchase both a Gucci shirt for him and a Balenciaga dress for her. Not only will you be able to purchase designer items, we also offer an option for you to sell your own preloved designer clothes. Your choices and actions matter, so what are you waiting for? Shop second-hand and sell second-hand!