More DW Blogs DW.COM

Women Talk Online

A forum for women to talk to women

The eco crisis lurking in your wardrobe

Sustainable fashion is becoming more mainstream thanks to eco-friendly fashion bloggers and industry heavyweights doing their bit. But the turbo consumerism of the fast fashion phenomenon remains a serious problem.

Not a good look

Fast fashion’s eco impacts are worse than most consumers realize. Germany has systems in place to collect old clothing to be reused and recycled. Yet much of it is sent to countries that lack collection systems and ends up in landfill. Meanwhile, the World Bank says between 17 and 20 per cent of industrial water pollution is due to the dyeing and treatment of garments.

Making sustainability trendy

An expanding online community of sustainable fashion bloggers is coming together to take on big questions about which brands and products are least harmful to the environment. “There are so many people I can exchange with and interact with, think about new ideas with,” Berlin-based fashion blogger Mia Marjanovic says.

Brands that do it better

There’s plenty of information online to help consumers find sustainable products. Many bloggers advise taking the hype on a company’s website with a pinch of salt. Brands tend to withhold certain information and play up minor achievements. But there are also non-profit organizations such as Rank a Brand and Ethical Consumer that provide unbiased rankings and research.

High-end only

Access to sustainable fashion is far from universal. Environmentally friendly garments tend to be much pricier than fast fashion. Shopping second-hand is one solution, but the eco fashion movement is keen to reach ever more consumers.

Work in progress

Brands like Stella McCartney are distinguished by their sustainable approaches to fashion. But a growing global middle class with more disposable income has driven the rise of fast fashion over the past 15 years. Advertisers harness the power of social media to sell products. The biggest challenge for sustainable fashion bloggers is sending the opposite message: Consume less!


Author: Miriam Webber



18.09.2018 | 11:37