The way we dress affects our world.
We are on top of the most urgent wake-up call that humans have ever had.
I studied Textile Design in Mexico, a country that has adopted traditions from its neighboring country; for example consumerism. I realize that behind fashion athere is much more to textiles than just design.
5 years ago, on April 24, 2013, the eight-story Rana Plaza building near Bangladesh collapsed on employees of a textile factory that produced garments for Western brands, such as Inditex. Bershka, Zara, Oysho, Massimo Dutty, Pull and Bear, among others.) About 1,100 people died and more than 2,000 were injured.
That day began FASHION REVOLUTION , a movement that seeks to raise awareness of the atrocious textile industry and motivate us to impulse change. This foundation is large and its ideals are commemorated annually from April 23-29.
¿Have you ever wondered where your clothes come from?
¿How your clothes are made?
¿Who made your clothes?
¿They will have paid the person who made it well?
¿How is the work environment of the textile industry?
It should be easy to answer, but it is not. A fashion report in Australia noted that 61% of the brands do not want to mention where the garments were made and 93% do not know where their raw materials come from. 80% of the same textile industries in eastern countries are illegal .
Many fashion industries are as irresponsible as they are evil, exploiting women between 18 and 35 years old. Apart from being extremely poorly paid, they are chained to the machines so that they do not waste work time, forcing them to wear a diaper all day, you can imagine the conditions they work in. These industries generally go to China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar where they create a cheap and irresponsible manufacturing cycle.
In addition to the great human impact on the environment, fashion is the second most polluting industry of the world, after oil. A lot of things come from that: it affects the land, the air, the rivers, carbon is emitted and global warming increases. So not only do we have problems with plastic in the ocean ... this is an alarming issue. According to various sources, 20% of the global industrial water pollution comes from the clothing industry..
Today we consume 500% more clothes than two decades ago . The brands produce around 10,000 styles a year and the shelf life from one collection to another is two weeks. We buy more and more and use it less and less. And everything that is not sold they burn. ¿Why burn those clothes instead of giving them another use, or better yet, why make more clothes if there is already an alarming quantity? This is an attitude that is NOT SUSTAINABLE at all.
Each year 10.5 million tons of clothing are buried in the United States alone and only 15% are recycled or donated. This textile waste releases methane, one of the many gases that contribute to global warming.
To give you an idea: a pair of jeans produces 33.4kg of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to driving a car 115 kilometers away. It is not surprising that at first glance the horizon is an increasingly penetrating and large gray layer.
Fifty of all tree species are at risk of disappearing completely by 2050..
¿Why is this happening?
120 million trees die to become the clothes we buy made of viscose or rayon. This fiber causes a great impact on the health of the populations near factories and devastating deforestation suffered by all living beings in the forests.
¿Do you like to wear cotton?
We have the wrong idea that cotton, being a natural fiber, is noble and harmless, even good for everyone. 22.5% of the world's insecticides and 10% of all pesticides are applied to conventional cotton fields as protectors from insects and plant pests. And not only that, the liters of water needed to produce 1kg of cotton are between 10 and 20 thousand liters.
¿And what about polyester? The polyester takes more than 200 years to degrade.
Be curious, find out, do something about it- Fashion Revolution.
1. Get informed:
Informing yourself is your most powerful weapon. Just as we have wondered, where does my trash end up, ask yourself where my clothes come from and where does it end . The impact it has on shopping habits and consequently on waste in particular by women is enormous..
2. Become aware:
Before buying something, ask yourself ¿Want it or need it? will I use it more than 30 time? If the answer is yes, buy it. With knowledge you can always be sure and calm that you are doing the right thing. Small actions can lead to big changes, but to really make a change you need to really understand the problem.
3. Take action:
Get the most out of your jeans. While the production of your jeans leaves 27% of the carbon footprint on the planet, if we wash them every 5 waers instead of every time we use them, we could reduce our use of energy and water by up to 39%.
Choose natural or vegetable fibers : A silk top takes 2 to 3 years to disintegrate, a lycra top 20 to 200 years.
Demand ethical fashion, buy handmade. Remember that by buying products with labels made in eastern countries, you are supporting slavery and human abuse. We want fair trade.
Quality before quantity. We have really forgotten what quality is these days. A good product made with dignity and ethics. We have to appreciate the brands and love them beyond the simple fact of being good or beautiful stores but because they really do things well”.
4. Responsible fashion
¿You don't want to stop being fashionable? 95% of the clothing that is discarded could be recycled or reused. Shop at thrift stores” (second Life). This is recycling, a circular economy. Today there are multiple brands that focus on selling these garments, so the option exists..
Let's put an end to the Fast Fashion consumer model, where we buy unconsciously and without any need. Let us be responsible not only for what we eat or what we discard, but also for the way we dress.. Let's have a responsible fashion.
* HereHere´s a list of some second-hand brands that you can find in Mexico.
All data is true from the following sources:
Written by: Renata Patron