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Look, we love fashion. But it’s also guilty of many, many things. 

The problem is multi-pronged: there are luxury fashion brands, which have been producing more collections every year beyond the Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter seasons. (A handful of designers want to change that.)

Some of these brands also share the dirty secret of burning or shredding their unsold merchandise, leading to even more pollution. And let’s not get started on how the luxury fashion industry has only recently made efforts to ensure that its production processes are eco-friendly.

Then there are the more obvious suspects, which are fast fashion brands. Brands like H&M, Zara and ASOS release collections far more frequently than luxury brands, and at bigger quantities. Their clothes are also appealing in their affordability, something that comes at the cost of cheap labour and low quality materials. Even still, not everything is sold and, like high fashion, fast fashion has a problem with discarding dead stock.

But the most troubling consequence of fast fashion’s accelerated production cycle is that we, as customers, have bought into the idea that we need to shop for more, more, more all the time. We could make mini-landfills of all the forgotten clothing in our wardrobes.

[Hero and Featured Image Credit: H&M]

Inside H&M’s Drottninggatan store, which now lets customers see the brand’s “Looop” recycling process. (Photo credit: H&M)

In 2020, fashion is at its breaking point, and things are changing. Some luxury labels, like Gucci, have boldly reduced its number of collections in a year. Others are now designing with materials made from waste, or making new creations out of pre-loved clothing (see the “Upcycled by Miu Miu” collection, or Margiela’s Recicla line).

Customers still want more, but we’re looking to alternative sources. Vintage fashion and rental services are on the rise, as is the number of younger shoppers who only want clothes that are made sustainably, ethically or locally.

As for fast fashion? The brands that began with a mission to dress everyone in stylish clothing are now on a different one — to do so while minimising their harmful impact on the environment. Below, we highlight some of the initiatives that they have rolled out in the name of sustainability.

This article first appeared on Lifestyle Asia Singapore

The post What are fast fashion labels doing to be more sustainable? appeared first on Lifestyle Asia Bangkok.