A Step Towards Circular Fashion Economy

Roshni Khatri

23rd Nov'22

What happens when you throw away an outdated purse or a pair of clothes that are no longer appropriate for you? I Guess In landfills, it ends up, Right?. 

 

Fast fashion is worsening the world more than we realize and is a factor in the current environmental problems. And the same is fueled by our pursuit of affordable prices and fashionable looks. Consumers are continuously on the lookout for the newest major trend that they can purchase without burning a hole in their wallets, and brands are producing clothing at a rapid speed and in great volumes. 

 

However, overproduction, the need for low prices, and everything in between give a lead to clothing that, among other things, has a shorter lifespan and lower quality. The environment is significantly impacted by all of this taken together. 

 

So let's spend a moment discussing the remedy. 

 

What is Circular Fashion?

 

In this circular model of production, distribution, and consumption, every garment is designed with the subsequent use in mind. It is made to be long-lasting, biodegradable, and recyclable. Without using any techniques or materials that are harmful to the environment. With this you should also know about gender free and gender neutral fashion brands as it will help you to choose the products as your choice. 

 

Circular Economy

 

In this manner, the item doesn't ever hurt the environment during its whole existence. But it should go without saying that consumer behavior is what determines if the model is successful. 

 

To begin with, it's imperative that we purchase sustainable textiles and reuse and recycle clothing. In addition, we should use, maintain, and repair them carefully; consider renting, redesigning, or exchanging them rather than purchasing more. Finally, choosing quality over quantity is always a better option.

 

The textile and fashion industries are actively pursuing the adoption of more sustainable practices to support circular fashion in an effort to help reduce waste. 

 

Leading designers are exploiting textile trash to produce new collections, even though many fashion and lifestyle firms are now recycling clothing using energy-efficient methods. In order to create new fibers and fabrics, manufacturers are also employing textile waste as a raw resource. 

 

. A regenerative economy known as the "circular economy" is being gradually embraced in order to ensure the sustainability of our planet. 

 

What Are The Fast-Fashion Industry's Hidden Costs?

 

"Fast fashion," a business strategy focused on low manufacturing costs and frequent customer purchases of new goods, has molded our modern apparel reality. The consumer price tags do not take into account the numerous social and environmental costs, which is what makes the model unsustainable. These unstated expenses include: 

 

Environmental

 

To make clothes, it takes a lot of energy, chemicals, and water, for example, to grow cotton or to fertilize cotton plants and dye textiles. 

 

An average pair of jeans is said to require between 4 and 10 thousand liters of water to make. The average person would consume that much alcohol over the course of five years. High water consumption contributes to global water scarcity, energy use produces carbon emissions, and river pollution is a result of effluent from aging processes. 

 

Social

 

Clothing is made in low-income nations where workers are not usually protected by labor regulations. Unfortunately, there has historically been a high prevalence of labor rights breaches in the supply chains for clothing. Low pay, child or bonded labour, and hazardous working conditions are still present and, in fact, have gotten worse since 2017. 

 

Circular Fashion Economy

 

Waste

 

Huge quantities of clothing are created and never worn as a result of low production costs combined with inaccurate demand projections, creating mountains of waste. When clothing accumulates outside, they emit pollutants into the environment, causing damage that can cost up to €200 per pair of jeans to repair. 

 

Clothes are now being thrown away twice as often as they were 20 years ago in places like America. 

 

Despite the significant amount of resources used to create clothing, up to 40% of all textiles produced for clothing never reach the final customer and are instead often burned or dumped in landfills. This is due to the low cost of clothing production and the fact that businesses have historically been exempt from paying for environmental expenses. 

 

Many brands are now manufacturing more than they can sell as a result of underinvestment in improving poor demand forecasting. 

 

Changes to Come in The Purchase, Use, and Sale of Clothing in a Circular Economy

 

The circular economy employs a holistic approach. The following issues must be resolved for the fashion industry to transition from a linear to a circular model. 

 

Design With Circularity and Sustainability in Mind 

 

This should take into account not only the use of virgin raw materials and the elimination of waste, but also how a product will be made, used, and eventually disposed of. 

 

Design considerations include using single fibers rather than blends, making sure hardware and trims are easily removed and can be recovered for reuse, and using safe colors and finishes to aid in recycling. Products should also be made from mono materials, including thread and trims. 

 

Produce Sustainability

 

Using natural resources, whether they may be raw materials or those that provide energy for production, in a way that enables them to be restored and regenerated rather than depleted and cause pollution is a crucial component of a circular economy approach to the fashion industry. 

 

Use for Longer Duration

 

It also entails redesigning and reworking existing products, such as adding value through upcycling, and rethinking ownership through sharing, renting, and resale models. Long-lasting clothing, footwear, and accessories are just one aspect of this. 

 

Circular Fashion Economy

 

Quickly Convert Back into Raw Materials 

 

Current procedures and facilities for collection, reprocessing, and recycling fall well short of what would be required to maintain all existent clothing and footwear in circulation through resale, upcycling, or recycling. New technologies are being developed to recycle clothing, including blends, and turn them into fibers with comparable quality to virgin raw materials.

 

Safely, And Easily Recycle Any Waste

 

Although technical terms like "biodegrade" and "compost" are not typically associated with the fashion industry, they are crucial steps in a circular fashion (since not all waste can be completely eliminated through design) and ones that industry professionals need to become familiar with in order to make wise choices. If materials can no longer be used, they should be returned to the earth quickly, easily, and without causing pollution. So sustainable fashion trends can assist to focus on eco friendly products. 

 

Conclusion

Currently, take-back programmes managed by corporations reward customers who return their unwanted clothing with coupons for new purchases. The Future of Circular Fashion research by Fashion for Good states that "80% of buyers returning clothing use their voucher to purchase a new item from the same brand." 

 

It is debatable whether transitioning to a circular fashion industry can address the effects of business models that depend on constant expansion, rising production quantities, and customers' desire for novelty. 

 

We at OpenGrowth, are committed to keeping you updated with the best content on the latest trendy topics from any major field. Also, both your feedback and suggestions are valuable to us. So, do share them in the comment section below.

A keen observer, who loves to spend time with nature. A fun loving person, enjoys to explore the new aspects of life. Passionate about reading and learning new things. Roshni is dedicated towards her work and has worked in different professions.

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