Join the fight to fix fast fashion!

We get it!  It’s nice to treat ourselves to a new outfit, especially in these tough times. With online shopping and high street sales (remember those?) it’s hard to resist the lure of a bargain, but what is our love of fast fashion costing the environment? 


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Fast fashion promises fast production, quick delivery, low prices and high turnover.  Garments are generally only worn a few times, and once the fashion is over they are quickly discarded in favour of the next trend.  

Their poor quality makes them worthless to charity shops, which are often the final dumping ground for these unwanted and unsellable items. 

Over consumption and excessive waste has unfortunately become a norm in the clothing industry and it’s costing us dearly. 

Due to our love of throwaway threads, the fashion industry has become the second highest carbon-creating industry in the world (UN Conference on Trade).  Emissions from textile production now outweigh the total carbon footprint of international flights and shipping combined.  

The highest contributor to the carbon footprint of clothing is the production and processing of fibre, whether natural or synthetic. Producing a single white cotton shirt creates the equivalent emissions as driving from Exeter to Plymouth!  

Given that UK households have £30 billion of clothing we haven’t worn for at least a year sitting in our wardrobes, do we really need to be buying more? (Image credit: 

If Devon residents avoided buying new clothes for a whole year, it would save a staggering 132,860 tonnes of CO2 (Waste Analysis 2017).  That may be a step too far for some, but there are ways we can reduce our carbon footprint, such as buying from charity shops (when open), second hand trading sites or swapping with family and friends. 

If you absolutely must buy brand new, choose good quality garments made from sustainably and ethically sourced fibres. Look after your clothes and, with a bit of washing know how, they will last for years!  

For more information about reducing and reusing clothing, please follow Recycle Devon on FacebookTwitter and Instagram or visit our  Love Your Clothes pages.