The more sustainability becomes a trend (itself an urgent and real need), the faster fashion seems to be turning into an industry that’s a bit out of style. Its brutal impact on the environment is a growing and pressing problem and consumer mindsets are changing because of it. Impulse buying is giving way to thoughtful and conscious consumption and this fact has forced large chains such as Zara and Mango, for example, to consider greener routes and ways to make clothes more durable. Following the current trend where the used clothing market is gaining ground, the two fast fashion brands seem to have found an alternative to the amount of clothing that ends up in landfills. In this sense, Mango and Zara will give a second life to their own clothes, through two different platforms.
Mango has created Mango Renting, a website already available in Spain where you can rent clothes and accessories for special occasions. The process is very simple, practical and fast. Just select the model you want, indicate the day and time you want to receive it, and once you get it, you have four days to test the look, use it and return it. You don’t need to wash your clothes, just put them in the box you received them in and Mango takes care of everything. He takes the clothes to the delivery address or another more suitable one and is responsible for cleaning them. If you choose a dress, for example, that you don’t like to see yourself in, you always have the option to return it.
Zara has chosen to create a resale platform for its own clothes, Zara Pre Owned, which will work in physical stores, on the brand’s website and app. It is expected to be available later this year and the truth is that this concept of circular fashion, where you can find used pieces from old collections, represents a good example of commitment to sustainability on the part of the Spanish chain. Based on the premise that the most sustainable garment is the one that has already been made, Zara thus intends to contribute to the reduction of waste and the consumption of new raw materials.
Because this is where the real problem lies, as water consumption, the use of toxic chemicals and the rising levels of pollution associated with textile waste are some of the main concerns inherent in the fast fashion industry. According to the study “The Global Environmental Injustice of Fast Fashion”, approximately 80 billion clothes are purchased worldwide each year. In the United States, about 85% of clothing purchased ends up in landfills, an average of 36 pounds per capita. In Portugal, according to data from the Portuguese Environment Agency, close to 185 thousand tons of textile waste are collected annually. Numbers that are true alarms and scream for effective change.