Opinion: The Truth about Fast Fashion


Each SHEIN item is individually packaged in plastic. This is the cause to a lot of plastic waste ending up in landfills. Photo by: Julian Martinez

Julian Martinez

Sustainable and safe clothing is important let’s dive deeper

One main problem the public faces today is that we are so concerned with what’s next in the media and in our personal lives. Fast fashion is playing an immense part in this phenomenon. We have been wrecking our environment only to forget about what we consumed even weeks after consuming it. The fashion industry’s overconsumption comes directly from fast fashion, producing low-quality designs to fit what is trending. It’s harmful. 

How is fast fashion affecting us? 

Junior Mia Coral said, “I’ve heard that fast fashion is bad for the environment because of the fumes it puts into the air.” This is true. Dyes, fertilizers and pesticides are common pollutants in this industry. Pollution is a huge problem when it comes to fashion. There is an extreme price for the environment to pay when we buy this low-costing clothing. 

Is TikTok making fast fashion faster?

TikTok trends have a big influence on fashion cycles, from the rise of popularity to rejection. Social media is perfect for the acceleration of trend cycles. Venders use this to market their stolen designs to their targeted audiences. These are such short-lived trends.

These trends could be considered micro-trends. Micro-trends fall faster than they rise. Fast fast fashion relies on these trends which are specifically advertised and promoted through social media. 

What can we do to help?

“We can try thrift shopping, supporting small businesses, trading clothes with friends and family and not going to stores [that participate in fast fashion] as often,” Coral said when asked how we can avoid feeding into consumerism. Preventing ourselves from the trap of consumerism can be tricky.

Poll answered November 23, 2021. Graphic by Julian Martinez.

While we can not 100% avoid consumerism, trying our best to reject it is possible. As individuals, we hold the power to keep the planet safe. Stop letting over-consumption ruin it for everyone. 

Junior Andrea Ruvalcaba said, “Being authentic to yourself is significant when it comes to fashion. Get inspired and set goals for yourself.” Remember the importance of our planet’s resources. Try eco-friendly fabrics and have fun with fashion.

Put simply, fast fashion needs to slow down. Avoiding participation is the best thing to do. Don’t let a cheap price tag fool you! More ethical and sustainable fashion is the finest kind of fashion. 

What if you can’t afford to splurge on sustainable clothing? Is thinking negatively about fast fashion classists? 

Although fast fashion is given a bad reputation, not everyone can afford to fill their wardrobe with sustainable, pricey pieces. Most people argue that fast fashion is used a few times then thrown in the dump, adding to landfills just to keep up with fashion trends. Fast fashion isn’t a terrible thing when the clothes are constantly being worn and used by people with more financial instability.