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It’s no news that the fast-fashion industry has been killing the environment and is impacting humanity negatively by producing a succession of designer styles at a very cheap price—as such, they aim to create fashion trends to keep sales going. But finding trendy fashion wear at the store and purchasing them only rewards one psychologically for a short time. And numerous researchers have shown that this mindless shopping can lead to a psychologically harmful effect. Basically, fashion practices do not benefit our mental health.
If you’re an environmentally conscious consumer, the task of updating your wardrobe and staying up to date with the latest fashion trends without the guilt of mindless shopping can be really daunting. Also, the increase in the number of style bloggers and the ever-rising power of social media creates a desire to want exactly what others want.
The reason why fast-fashion thrives is that they’ve created a never-ending demand in the mind of the consumers. Over the years, it has been found that fast fashion causes problems for our mental health via two sources:
Let’s go into an intrinsic detail of how this two creates a way for fast fashion to affect our mental health:
Environmental Impact of Fast Fashion on Mental Health
A lot of individuals are aware of the environmental impact that fast-fashion. It is estimated that the fashion industry is culpable for making the largest negative contribution to the planet. Experts also believe that it is one of the most wasteful industries on the planet. As such, the guilt of indiscriminate shopping of fast fashion wears on an environmentally conscious person can disrupt their inner peace.
It can lead to anxiety, depression, and can give one a sense of worthlessness. Thus, an environmentally conscious person should ensure that he/she makes conscious efforts to shop from sustainable brands. Sadly, the option of shopping from a sustainable brand is out of reach of some consumers due to the price tags that usually accompany these brands. However, some brands, e.g., Girotti and many others, now have fashion wears that is available for an average consumer.
A good shopping strategy for a fashion-conscious person is to shop from sustainable fashion brands that are within the price range of an average consumer. An added benefit here is that such fashion wears are usually well manufactured, and they last long.
On the other hand, fast-fashion brands are designed such that you can dispose of them quickly, and you’ll regret purchasing them when disposing of them shortly after making the purchase. But sustainable fashion wears can be kept for years.
Even if a cloth from a sustainable fashion brand tears, you can approach a tailor to fix them as they’re usually made with quality fabrics that are easy to work on.
Social Media Impact of Fast-fashion on Mental Health
If we take a look at the effect of social media on our life now, it’s difficult to imagine living a life without it. Anywhere you turn, there’s often someone that’s engaging on one social media platform or the other. And while some login to their favorite social media platform to share content, others use the platform to see the things that other social media users post on the platform.
Fast fashion, as you know, thrives on mass production. And as such, the trend created by social media is important for them to thrive. Anytime a consumer glances at an eye-catching trend on social media, it’ll create a desire in the consumer to purchase the product. However, this desire is a trap when yielded to as there will always be new trends.
Another cause of a mental health problem via fast-fashion is the fear of missing out (FOMO). Although this mental state has existed for some time, the launch of social media sites like Instagram and Facebook has exacerbated this problem. The idea of missing out on the latest fast-fashion trends can trigger anxiety, affect self-esteem, and create an unnecessary sense of demand.
The best way to recover from this fear is by having a sense of self-fulfillment and focusing your attention on brands that are into mass customization. We’re laying emphasis on mass customization because they produce based on the taste of the consumer—this way, you will satisfy yourself based on your inner desires without the need to look outside for an external source of fashion inspiration.
Fast fashion has been shown to be a cause of mental health problems. Some of the reason for this is the pressure from social media to keep up with the latest fast-fashion trends and the self-guilt that comes with using a fast-fashion brand.
When you fill your closet with garments of poor quality and value, it can instill a sense of regretful and bad self-reflection on you as you begin to equate your preference for quantity over quality as a reflection of who you are.