The Problems with Fast Fashion for Sustainable Travelers

The Problems with Fast Fashion
for Sustainable Travelers

Fast fashion has become a major issue in terms of sustainability.  Of course, we all want to get great souvenirs on a trip, but where do those end up? The pollution and other problems with fast fashion have resulted in a devastating impact to both the environment and aquatic life. If you are planning on purchasing some fast fashion at your next travel destination, you may want to reconsider. Keep reading for shopping tips for while you are traveling to help negate the problems with fast fashion. 

What Is Fast Fashion?

Fast fashion is the cheap and trendy clothing that samples ideas from the catwalk and turns them into garments at alarming speeds to meet consumer demand. The idea is to get the newest styles on the market as fast as possible, so shoppers can snap them up while they are still at the height of their popularity. 

Waste occurs at every stage of manufacturing when it comes to fast fashion, and the process often degrades the land, harms wildlife, and pollutes soil and water. In fact, the fast fashion problem is responsible for as much as 10% of global carbon dioxide emissions. With the growth of the fast fashion industry, clothing sales have doubled from 100 to 200 billion units per year, while the average number of times an item was worn decreased by 36%. A staggering $500 billion are lost every year due to a lack of recycling and clothing utilization. 

Sadly, fast fashion typically ends up in the dumpster after a few wears, read our article on 4 Ways To Combat Clothing Waste for more information. The fast fashion problem doesn’t stop here, the industry is responsible for 92 million tons of clothing related waste each year, which produces about half a million tons of microplastics.

How To Stop The Problem With Fast Fashion

It’s easy to go for fast fashion souvenirs while traveling, but we have you covered with easy shopping tips in Everything You Need to Know About Purchasing Locally-Made Vacation Souvenirs. By avoiding things that are mass produced, fast fashion being one of them, you are traveling more sustainably. 

What does sustainable shopping while traveling look like?

  • Buying from locally owned stores and vendors
  • Locally sourced goods
  • Looking up fair paying, sustainably run, and/or eco-friendly brands
  • Supporting local artisans (particularly women)
  • Choosing to invest in thoughtful items versus plastics, and gimmicky souvenirs

You can find these shops by asking for local recommendations, and utilizing social media. 

These shopping tips will help you to become a more sustainable traveler while abroad and in your every day life. When it comes to shopping sustainably while traveling, the best choice you can make is the local one. This helps to negate the problems with fast fashion and the fashion industry in general. Shopping locally will look different everywhere you go, it will range in price and products as well, but it’s a great way to be a more sustainable traveler.  

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