The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

Plastic on the Runway?

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Image created by Zahara Abedin on Artist.ai (app)

Fashion has always been the talk of every decade. Whether it’s models strutting the runway with different clothing themes during Fashion Week, or it’s upcoming designers trying to make it on Vogue magazine, the ideas of fashion have had its shares globally. But with globalization, comes evolution, and sometimes, evolution doesn’t always leave the best mark.

What is meant by this, is now in modern times, there’s a new trend called “fast fashion”. When defined, fast fashion is companies trying to lower the cost of their pieces, while also trying to make it affordable. Sounds great, right?  Well, when looking at this speculation, the only result is cheap quality and cheaper ways to manufacture these designs.

As it is, commonly known companies such as H&M, ZARA, Forever 21, Primark and Topshop” are the dominators in this speed clothing industry. However, they are now experiencing their biggest opponent in this industry. Many have heard and shopped at this company before, and quite recently, it has been taking over the globe with people buying and doing “hauls” for videos. Additionally, the low prices and pretty clothing selection has also caught the attention of many. If you haven’t guessed the company by now, well here’s the answer, it’s Shein.

Before getting into that mess, here’s some background information. It’s a given that some fast fashion clothing tends to be priced cheaper ‘. This is because the quality of the material is lower, and sometimes, you may even end up with dye from the clothes rubbing off on your skin. There is also the fact that cheap clothing also means that it lives a short time before getting destroyed (such as putting it in the washer, even if you followed the instructions). The environmental impacts also play a big factor as to why fast fashion is an overall disadvantage. The synthetics fibers used are made from plastic microfibers. These types of material contribute to carbon emissions, and the decomposition process takes a while. If these synthetic materials were to end up in the environment, the negative effects continue to grow and occur. 

Now, in order to make these clothes at a low cost, cheap labor is involved. This is what is circulating the controversies about Shein. It is believed that this company has been using forced labor in order to mass produce clothes in volume. The salary the workers receive is little, and on top of that, they work overtime to an excessive extent. Shein has been questioned for the way they ethically work and make clothing , leaving this company in the talk on controversy.

Why is a fast fashion event happening in the first place? There are a lot of answers to this question, especially since the flexibility of fast fashion leads to many changes and uses for its type of manufacturing. CNN states, fast fashion designs are “dupes”— a popular term on social media used for garments inspired by (and in some cases, outright copied from) luxurious looks work by celebrities and trendsetters..” The fast fashion industry is also becoming a lot more popularized and a term that is used often. Social media also builds on this manufacturing chaos, leaving more consumers to buy.

In the end, this industry is a hit or miss. You can either win with the clothing you buy, or end up with a cheap quality material that can’t be recyclable. However, there isn’t an easy solution to stop these large companies from producing over-priced clothing, and leaving consumers with items that may only see the light of day once. Either way, though fast fashion has its ups and downs (more downs than ups if we’re being honest), we can at least say that this is a step for fashion.

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About the Contributor
Zahara Abedin, Staff Writer
Zahara Abedin is a freshman and beginning her first year in TRL. She loves to write, because she is able to express her inner thoughts and feelings. However, she also finds an interest in other activities such as crocheting, arts and crafts, dance and any other type of artistic forms that allow space for creativity. Zahara aspires to be a journalist in the future and hopes to gain more knowledge to succeed this passion!

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