Fast fashion has become a hot topic recently, with climate change at the forefront of people's minds, those with an eco-conscious are looking at new ways to be sustainable in a world that covets labels and ease of access to the latest trends at a cheap price.
The fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world.
It produces 20 per cent of global wastewater and 10 per cent of global carbon emissions -- and it's estimated that by 2050 this will have increased to 25 per cent.
A staggering 501,000 tonnes of clothes are sent to Australian landfills each year.
If you are looking to say goodbye to fast fashion and embrace a more sustainable lifestyle, without giving up your own unique style, then you may need to embrace pre-loved and second hand and your local op shop is just the place to start.
The era of fast fashion may be coming to an end, with experts earmarking the coming decade as a new age of sustainably manufactured and 'upcycled' fashion.
As a consumer, one of the most effective actions you can take against the fashion industry is to embrace the humble op shop.
Op shopping breaks the cycle of fast fashion, diverting garments destined for the trash from the landfill and into their stores, ready for purchase at affordable prices.
In recent years op shops have shed their stigma and are no longer the haunts of grannies searching for their knitted wears, a recent surge in savvy shoppers has breathed new life into the charity shopping scene.
Now a haven for hipsters, fashionistas, avid recyclers and bargain hunters, your local op shops are under pressure to keep their rails and shelves stocked.
Top tips for a sustainable wardrobe
- If buying nothing new is daunting and you rely on the chain stores, start by having a look at your wardrobe to see what you have already got.
- Try dipping your toe in the water. Small church op shops can be great.
- Now is the time to go shopping because everyone is having these big cathartic wardrobe clean outs and dumping these bags of amazing things and you see incredible brands. Things will start at $3 or $4.
- Op shops are also a great place to get second hand furniture. Facebook marketplace and Gumtree are amazing for that too.
- Be mindful, if you are going to be donating things. Make sure it is something that can be sold, because a lot of charity money and volunteer time goes to putting goods in landfill that can't be sold.