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When it comes to sustainability, there are so many terms being thrown around. Ethical fashion, conscious fashion, slow fashion… to be honest, it can get pretty confusing. Then, we get into the root cause of sustainability. What is actually driving the destruction of the environment, exploitation of labor, etc. etc.? All of it can get very confusing, very quickly. What is even worse is the internet crucifying everyone and anyone for the audacity to use a plastic straw, as though the usage of one plastic straw is the reason why our planet is dying. Aren’t there bigger battles to fight?

My focus on sustainability and sustainable fashion has always come from a place of “let’s just all do the best we can”. I liken it very similarly to maintaining a budget; if you are low on funds, trying to save $5 on an arbitrary thing like a random coffee to treat yourself probably isn’t hurting your budget as much as that $500 shopping spree you went on last weekend.

When you are presented with so many issues on what is wrong with the world and what you should be doing to fix it, I want to actually break it all down and help you understand it all. I want to help you find your own version of the $500-shopping-spree-denting-your-budget. It is only from truly understanding the issue that we can then reflect on our own lives and decisions to make conscious choices to live differently.

First, let’s get our terminology straight. There are many, many words that government, brands, and influencers will use, but I want to start with the bare basics. I have categorized the top buzzwords you will hear by category

General Terms that Don’t Mean Much:

  • Sustainability
    • Sustainability is such a huge, complicated word. Generally, it is a bucket term that incorporates championing protection of our environment, animal rights, and fair labor conditions
  • Slow Fashion
    • I wrote a whole Instagram post about this. It is “designing, creating, and buying garments for quality and longevity” to reduce our carbon footprint and waste. I personally practice slow fashion when buying new clothing through focusing on good quality and classic styles
  • Fast Fashion
    • This is cheap clothing that is produced quickly by retailers serving the global market; typically they focus on the latest trends and styles (think Forever21, H&M, and Zara)
  • Conscious Fashion
    • Another terminology for Sustainable Fashion; it can mean anything from being environmentally friendly, to only buying clothing made in decent labor conditions, and not buying fur, leather, etc.

Filed Under: Sustainability

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Copyright © 2019 · Claire Shay · Creative Yadley