What is fashion's problem with glitter?

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A guest wears a pink beret hat, red sunglasses, a silver shiny glitter outfit, a purple clutch, a necklace, and is posing for a selfie, outside Chanel, during Paris Fashion Week - Womenswear Spring Summer 2020, on October 01, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Edward Berthelot/Getty Images)
A guest wears a pink beret hat, red sunglasses, a silver shiny glitter outfit, a purple clutch, a necklace, and is posing for a selfie, outside Chanel, during Paris Fashion Week - Womenswear Spring Summer 2020, on October 01, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Edward Berthelot/Getty Images)

Glitter is a common way to decorate and brighten up an art project or piece of clothing.

Glitter has been commonly used in many applications, but with a greater awareness of environment issues it has since been banned in many industries such as fashion and music festivals. This is because glitter is made from microplastics, and studies conducted have concluded that microplastics are detrimental to marine life.

READ MORE: From the field to the washing machine, this is how the fast fashion cycle pollutes the environment 

Clothing getting washed can cause microplastics to be emitted into the sea, which then eaten by marine life. Microplastics have been found in the deepest point of the sea at Challenger Deep.

They are commonly made from PET, which causes chemicals to be released when broken down in the sea.

Beyond fashion, glitter is being stripped from Christmas cards and plastic is being purged from packaging as high street retailers try to deliver a more eco-friendly festive season this year. 

Compiled by Ayanda Mgcina

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