The world is going through a climate emergency and facing a devastating situation due to environmental degradation. Pollution across the world is at a dangerous level, which is threatening the lives of humans and animals. Unsustainable development is negatively impacting the environment by generating excessive waste. The world needs sustainable technologies for production to continue growth and development without impacting nature. Innovators in every industry are developing technologies that could produce products less harmful to the environment.
The fashion & textile industry, is one such industry, that contributes heavily to pollution during production and creates huge waste. The apparel industry is one of the world’s largest industries, generating around €1.5 trillion in annual revenues and employing over 50 million people. The demand for the garments is very high due to fast-changing fashion, and the availability of cheap products. The Fashion industry due to its nature continues to lack transparency, in the means of production and state of employees, even after many reforms. There is widespread exploitation of people working in the production and supply chain. The main reason for labor exploitation is the outsourcing of products and licensing of the brand name by big brands. Brands and retailers are still not taking enough responsibility for the pay and working conditions in their factories, the environmental impacts of the materials they use, or how the products they make affect the health of people, animals, and the earth.
SUSTAINABLE PRODUCTION PRACTICES
The Fashion industry is responsible for high environmental impacts and social challenges. The concept of ‘Sustainable Fashion’ was brought to the textile and fashion industry to mitigate the challenges of environmental pollution and social issues, including social upliftment of the workers in the industry. Sustainable Fashion means production and consumption of textile/clothing in an environmentally friendly way. Under sustainable fashion, overexploitation of the natural resources and harm to animals is discouraged by using Eco-friendly material and production techniques, suitable for the environment. The production of excessive products, harmful or friendly, is discouraged.
Organic cotton and recycling of waste material (PET1 Plastic) are now widely used in the Fashion industry for manufacturing products under the sustainable fashion category. Materials such as bamboo, soy, etc are also used by the fashion industry, to produce Eco-friendly garments. Dying of clothes with chemicals unfriendly to the environment is also been asked to minimize.
CONSUMER BEHAVIOR FOR SUSTAINABLE FASHION
Sustainable Fashion promotes environment-friendly consumer behavior by encouraging Cloth Swapping, the purchase of second-hand clothes, and use of the eco-friendly garments. Consumers are asked to avoid over-purchase of garments and use garments for a longer time. Using eco-friendly garments in a reasonable quantity means avoiding too much purchase of even eco-friendly garments, helps in containing garment waste, hence less destruction of natural resources for production and less pollution.
‘Fast Fashion’ is the biggest contributor to garment waste. Due to fast-changing Fashion, people now purchase more clothes and discard clothes sooner than required. This habit creates a lot of garment waste, which ends up in the landfills. A polyester and nylon cloth takes almost 250 years to get decomposed. The garments made up of unnatural fiber, sheds microfibers, during washing which ultimately ends up in rivers or seas.
Sustainable Fashion promotes ‘Slow Fashion’ means the use of garments made up of eco-friendly material, for a longer time. Cloth swapping, renting and loaning are organized by various social communities to encourage the exchange of garments and different fashion choices. The fashion companies supporting sustainable Fashion promotes the use of old garments in a way that looks fashionable.
It has seen in the Hollywood and glamour industry, clothes worn by celebrities were hardly repeated, as it is a taboo. As seeking fans, it’s hard for a normal person to follow it. Here, sustainable fashion, the use of old garments in a new way, comes into play. The Youtube videos, in which youtube vlogger is accentuating on how a normal ‘Big Scarf’ could be turned into a skirt or a top or a scarf etc is the perfect example of a sustainable fashion technique. This is nothing but a very different perspective to see the fashion. The reason it’s being popular and being on trend is that everyone wants to maintain the uniqueness, and of course, save money. And, when you can give yourself a wardrobe makeover, without spending a dollar, what’s more, exciting than that! Turning your skirt into a dress, or top into a skirt isn’t it amazing. Many stylist are following this trend and sharing this into an air of fashion. We can see it all over the social media platform, whether Instagram or youtube, it’s everywhere.
Anything done by our favorite stars and celebs becomes a trend, the same is happening with sustainable fashion. Sustainable Fashion is gaining popularity because it has been promoted by many Actors and celebrities. A large number of celebrities in India, the United States, and in other countries are promoting sustainable fashion to save the environment, save time and how can we forget the money.
Here are some Influential Celebrities Leading The Way Towards A More Sustainable Fashion Future:-
More magical than Hermione Granger, actress, and UN Ambassador Emma Watson is a real-life wizard. She even started up a separate Instagram account to follow her sustainable high fashion journey with credentials for all the clothing she wears, especially during a press tour. An advocate for all things sustainable fashion and beauty, Emma Watson shows that couture to everyday wear can be sourced ethically and still be stunning.
Rock Royalty, Stella McCartney is one of the first fashion designers to incorporate sustainability into her high fashion line, as well as her style, vowing not to use real leather in all her designs (including shoes) since the beginning of her label. Not only does Stella employ this practice for her successful company, but also in her daily life taking steps to live as organically and environmentally friendly as she can.
Swedish fashion retail giant H&M, along with Fashion Design Council of India (FDCI) recently hosted a preview to introduce the new Conscious Exclusive collection of the brand and Dia Mirza was present to show her support to the cause. One of the first and few Indian celebrities to embrace sustainable fashion – Dia Mirza was quoted saying, “I am a huge champion of nature and this line of H&M reflects my ethos. I think it’s important to pay attention to how one can reuse and recycle for sustainable fashion.”
Amongst the many other social causes that Gul Panag is associated with; Shop For Change Fair Trade is one of them. Shop For Change – a citizen action initiative promotes fair trade opportunities for poor farmers of Telangana, Kutch, and Vidarbha.
Not many people know that this glamorous actor is also a supporter of sustainable fashion. Kaif used an eco-friendly wardrobe for her entire movie Jagga Jasoos in 2017. Almost all the clothes were bought from The Reformation which is based in Los Angeles. The Reformation – is a sustainable fashion brand that upcycles and recycles clothes to make beautiful outfits that are also organic and Eco-friendly.
It is important to understand that eco-friendly garments are costly. A large world population is still under poverty, which could not afford sustainable fashion. The cheap products made up of synthetic fiber fulfills their need for fashion without hurting their finances. The production cost of sustainable fashion is required to cut down if we did not want it to be only the property of the rich.
Author : Pragya Tripathi