The phenomenon of Fast fashion it is one of the most debated in fashion and it deals with the production of garments with a great environmental impact. In fact it is the most used approach currently because it involves the massive and massive production of clothing.
In fact, Fast fashion means a production method of low quality clothes at very low prices and which provides for the launch of new collections continuously and in a very short time. In fact, it is the strategy behind the large chains found in any shopping center.
We can therefore say that the mission of the Fast fashion brands is to offer their consumers latest trends of the moment at a good price. The recipients of products made with the Fast fashion approach are style-conscious people who give so much importance to the emotional side of fashion, to appearing unique not for what you wear but for how you do it.
While a large part of consumers buy Fast fashion products because they do not have the economic possibility to buy garments of another level, other consumers buy these products only because they feel the need to change your wardrobe often.
To counter the Fast fashion movement there is that of Slow fashion, which seeks to instill in producers a “slower” way of packaging clothing, trying to make consumers understand that it is not necessary to buy new clothing every day.
Today the giants of Fast fashion are focusing on e-commerce and online marketing in order to reach their customers anytime and anywhere by extending their life cycles. The demand for this type of clothing is far from diminishing
The history of Fast fashion
Many hypothesize that Fast fashion originated in the industrial revolution, when the textile industry, thanks to the impulse given by mechanization and automation, began to produce garments in series. From that moment, in fact, the clothes could be resold at a medium-low price, even modern clothes for the time and fashionable, but above all they became accessible for the lower social classes, which until that moment were excluded from the fashion world. .
The real debut of the first Fast fashion brands obviously dates back to the 1970s, when brands such as Zara, H&M, GAP, Topshop, Primark, OVS and Benetton were born. From small specialized, often family-run, entrepreneurial companies, over the years these companies have become increasingly popular, have revised their production, resource management, distribution and sales strategies.
The 90s and 2000s were the golden moment for the giants of Fast fashion with a real e its global and widespread diffusion. Since then, the great Fast fashion brands have conquered the market, competing in terms of circulation and turnover even with more luxury companies. Their success is related to the ability to intercept certain trends by satisfying the expectations of customers who have been able to translate into a completely new approach.
In essence, the great giants of Fast fashion in fact have:
- made fashion democratic and accessible to all
- modified the concept of “collection” as they focus on a continuous exchange of the offer
- understood and exploited the new buying trends by focusing on the more “compulsive” behavior of the average Fast fashion consumer
Fast fashion: i pro
The Fast fashion ha dei pro or rather of the aspects that must not be generalized. Many items of clothing purchased by large distribution chains, in fact, last for several years and are not necessarily of poor quality.
Furthermore, it is not said that quality is always poor, it is a very generalized statement: the large chains have in fact tested production systems for years that can guarantee good quality of their products, while constantly changing collections.
Clearly the success of Fast fashion is due to the possibility for consumers to wear garments similar to those of the most famous brands on the planet, being able to buy them at very low prices. So, a particular model of shorts seen on the catwalks of a brand that will sell it for 2,000 euros is replicated by large chains such as H&M and Benetton for a few tens of euros.
Fast fashion has therefore proved to be a real revolution in the retail sector: producing low cost fashion offers the possibility to a large slice of people, much larger than those who can afford a pair of shorts for 2,000 euros, to be able to buy items just seen on the catwalks.
Companies based on Fast fashion cannot use ecological fabrics currently on the market because they cost too much and would not allow them to sell the garments cheaply, but to counteract the negative consequences on their reputation in the world, large chains such as H&M have conceived of the campaigns of withdrawal of used clothes in exchange for discounts on purchases.
These initiatives have found considerable success among the public, because the consumer has the opportunity to buy something new at a discounted price (as well as having the perception that the company is making an effort for the planet). The distribution chains for their part sell their new collections allowing to keep in motion a market that has to travel at very high speed.
Fast fashion: i contro
The problem of the Fast fashion are the cons: reselling cheap clothing means producing it at low cost. This is only possible if some important aspects of production are devalued. The worker is the most disadvantaged in this scenario but not only for the low salary but also and above all for the working conditions.
The problem is that in addition to a lack of respect for the people who produce the clothes, the companies that base their production on Fast fashion do not care about the impact of their productions onenvironment. The fabrics are not chosen on the basis of the damage they can cause on the environment, there is no attention to production techniques and if pesticides or aggressive chemicals are used it is not a first degree problem at all.
The negative impact on the environment is therefore given by:
- use of pesticides that pollute the rivers and land near the factories that every day dump them into the water
- application of toxic dyes or harmful and aggressive substances used for coloring or bleaching fabrics
Even the people who live near those rivers and those drains using that water for agriculture and daily needs obviously suffer from it, as companies seriously endanger their salute.
Fast fashion e e-commerce
There is also an influence on the success of a clothing store speed and the flexibility of the entire production chain, from design to delivery. Fast fashion is essential to meet an increasingly demanding demand and try to minimize the risk of unsold goods. In fact, it must be easier and easier to modify a garment according to the characteristics and preferences of the buyer, who is faced with an almost infinite quantity of clothes to choose from and this implies an acceleration in the supply of novelties to be proposed. , both online and in the physical store.
After all, the demand for trendy but low-priced clothing continues to increase, as demonstrated by the dizzying expansion of an ultra-fast fashion e-commerce such as Shein, the most downloaded shopping app in the United States and second in Italy.
E-commerce and Fast fashion are therefore still the keys to ensure success in the field of fashion retail that focuses on quantity rather than quality, even if you have to be very attentive to the ever-growing awareness of a young target towards the issues. environmental. They cannot be ignored just as it is not ethically imaginable to continue to make no effort to safeguard the right to health of the planet and of people.
If we continue to heatedly discuss the opportunity to boycott Fast fashion for ethical reasons, however, the demands seem to disappear in this continuous loop of compulsive shopping, which at bargain prices pushes you to buy continuously.
Because Fast fashion has been (and is) successful
Despite the defect of Fast fashion brands related to the poor quality of the final product, this approach is also successful in a country like Italy with a long and exciting history of fashion craftsmanship. Because? The reason is that the instant fashion has now changed the habits of consumers and expectations towards a garment.
Among other things, one figure above all explains this situation best: today, compared to twenty years ago, the average life span of an item of clothing has been at least halved and, almost as a result, the average consumer buys at least twice as much clothes.
Much more pragmatically, this means that Fast fashion is not “fast” only in the production chain but throughout its life cycle. A Fast fashion item of clothing is to be considered old already a few months after being purchased and its price can only be compared to this very short life cycle.