I’ve observed second-hand clothing is still visualized as ragged, dirty clothing. This image may have been true in the past when apparel was purchased by the customer and then disposed after rigorous use.
However, today, people’s shopping habits have extensively changed because of stimulus from the fashion giants. The fashion industry nurtures consumerism. They introduced fast-fashion where brands like H&M, Forever21 and Zara among others have as many as 52 seasons in a year. This is far off from the initial three seasons brands had, in which styles would change as per the summer, winter and monsoon.
Since companies churn out brand new styles about 52 times a year people feel “out-of-fashion” quickly and desire new clothing. This trend has been going on long enough for it to have become a habit, and now the customer is looking forward to changes much sooner.
Therefore, unlike previous times, clothing gets discarded not because it is ragged, but simply because people are bored of it, it’s out of style, or a ton of new clothing has left no space in the closet for the ‘not so old’ clothes.
If these barely used clothes are still in their prime condition, they really should not be thrown away and swamp the planet, causing catastrophic environmental damage. Instead, we should work to get rid of the stigma present and normalise reusing clothes. Sustainable fashion is not just for the low socio-economic class; it is for every conscious individual who wants to appreciate and enjoy fashion in harmony with nature!
Times have changed, so should we.