Fashion, we love pre-loved
Generation Z are the driving force behind the trend for circularity, buying and selling pre-loved clothes via platforms such as Depop, Vinted, Facebook marketplace and Shpock.TikTok is a big contributor to the ethical shopping movement by spreading new ethical spending trends and we are loving it. According to Refinery, TikTok “gives a platform to everyone from vintage clothing store owners and mending experts to fashion sustainability experts”.
Equally, a recent report by UNiDAYS, surveying a panel of more than 18,000 Gen Z students about fashion trends, their fashion preferences, their opinion of retailers, sustainability, pricing and more, found that ‘nearly 68% (!) of the Gen Z generation demand that their clothes are manufactured to the highest ethical standards and 57% feel brands championing sustainability, equality and diversity are getting it right’. These are impressive numbers and Gen Z are clearly pushing the ‘green’ spending trend.
But watch out for greenwashing
Many leading fashion brands have been criticised for greenwashing, which is when brands claim clothes are sustainably made when, in truth, they’re not, or only very partially. In fact, this report shows that 60% of sustainability claims by UK and European fast fashion companies, including Zara and H&M, are unsubstantiated and misleading consumers. Livia Firth, co-founder of the Sustainability Consultancy Eco-Age, says that global brands have an “addiction to plastics” and that there is an “emptiness to many of their sustainability claims”. The report reveals how many fast fashion brands – some of our favourites too - are prolific users of fossil fuel-based fibres, which are unhealthy for us and for the planet, as they are totally indestructible and totally unrecyclable. We therefore need to be extra discerning when buying new clothes and look at what material they are made of.