Fast Fashion – The shady world of cheap clothes | Highlights | DW

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But cheap clothes come at a high price: a precarious existence for workers and a catastrophic environmental impact.

The clothing industry is currently flooding the planet with clothing. With 100 billion items produced every year, that’s more than ever. International companies are locked in a continuous race to create new styles and earn higher profits. And this gigantic expansion is set to continue: the sector is expected to grow by 60% by 2030.

Spanish Bekleidungskette Zara

On the one hand, fast fashion means affordable clothing for everyone. Zara is known as the original fast fashion brand. The Spanish clothing giant creates 65,000 new styles every year.

Documentation Fast Fashion – die dunkle Welt der Billigmode

Clothing shopping has become a real hobby fueled by social networks: half of Instagram posts are related to fashion and beauty. This is how fast fashion market leaders influence the buying behavior of their customers, supported by relevant neuromarketing specialists.

Documentation Fast Fashion – die dunkle Welt der Billigmode

Fast fashion is taking advantage of e-commerce. No need to try on clothes in store, the customer orders online and has the garment delivered – and if he doesn’t like it, he sends it back. Disposable Clothing and Disposable Labor: Done by an army of couriers within the precarious gig economy.

Documentation Fast Fashion – die dunkle Welt der Billigmode

The textile industry is the sector with the second highest environmental award in the world. The favorite material of fast fashion makers – viscose made from wood fibers – is being marketed as a climate-friendly alternative. But the production of this fabric uses a whole range of chemicals. This leads to serious health problems, not only for those working in factories, but also for people living nearby, for example in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh.

Documentation Fast Fashion – die dunkle Welt der Billigmode

Every year in Europe, four million tons of clothes end up in the trash. Less than one percent of it is recycled. The fashion industry likes to flaunt its sustainability credentials, but the reality is quite the opposite.

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