- Terms like 'sustainable fashion' and 'ethical fashion' have taken over the fashion industry.
- With the rise of fast fashion, the onus has been put on the consumer to be conscious in what they buy.
- Sindiso Khumalo, Selfi, Tshepo Jeans are some ethical local fashion brands you can shop.
Words like 'sustainable fashion,' 'ethical fashion' have become buzzwords that we hear often when brands try to sell us their products. But are they walking the talk?
With the rise of cheap, fast fashion clothing it has become important for us to be conscious the clothes we buy to minimise the negative impact on our planet.
The significance of ensuring we are conscious buyers and hold brands accountable is because of the impact of mass production, harmful production processes as well as child labour.
Fashion brands need to create fashion in ways that are considerate of humanity and the environment because this reduces the harmful impact unethical processes have. The ultimate goal is to have a system that works without leaving a negative footprint.
“Increasing the average number of times clothes are worn is the most direct lever to capture value and design out waste and pollution in the textiles system. Designing and producing clothes of higher quality and providing access to them via new business models would help shift the perception of clothing from being a disposable item to being a durable product”, according to a report by the Ellen Macarthur Foundation.
Thankfully, South African fashion brands understand this and are playing their part. For example, Tshepo Jeans produces ready-to-wear denim in small batches, re-uses off-cuts to make new denim and uses water-wise dyeing techniques.
Another ethical brand is Sindiso Khumalo. Not only does Sindiso Khumalo work closely with nongovernmental organisations and small workshops in South Africa and Burkina Faso to produce unique handwoven and hand-embroidered textiles for her collections, but her products are also made to order and thus reduce waste caused by mass production.
If you're a conscious consumer, or want to be one, here are some local and international brands to consider:
Retailers that have announced efforts to produce more consciously:
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