While the main advantage of slow fashion seems obvious and widely known to most – namely sustainability – there are countless other benefits with deeper implications. That’s why we at SANVT would like to share the 10 advantages of slow fashion that go beyond just sustainability.
Imagine you’re shopping online for a simple white t-shirt and you’re faced with the choice of buying a regular, cheap t-shirt from a fast fashion brand, or a high quality, sustainable, but more expensive t-shirt from a slow fashion brand. Which one do you choose? In most cases, people still opt for the cheaper, fast fashion item. After all, it’s just a simple t-shirt, right? Wrong! Whether it’s a simple basic or a fancy it-piece, every piece of clothing we buy, has an environmental and social impact.
Although the awareness of fashion’s impact is increasing, sustainability alone is not enough to convince buyers to choose sustainable fashion above the abundant choice of cheaper fast fashion. Slow fashion must offer more than just sustainability – which still remains a vague concept for many. Luckily, slow fashion has more than the sustainability card up its sleeve! Here are the 10 advantages of slow fashion that will convince you once and for all that it is not only the most climate-friendly, but also the better choice.
Before we dive in, here are the 10 advantages of slow fashion in a nutshell:
- Reduced consumption
- Saving money in the long run
- Minimizing the ecological footprint
- Saving freshwater resources
- Protecting the oceans
- Respecting human rights
- Supporting brands with a purpose
- A clear conscience
1. Reduced consumption
One of the benefits of slow fashion is that not only the fashion is slower, it also slows down your consumption. You purchase more mindfully, more consciously, and you can quickly observe that you’re buying less frequently. In other words, you buy less, but more thoughtfully. For Vivienne Westwood, it’s a matter of “buy less, choose well, make it last”. Reducing your consumption ensures that you don’t buy fashion items indiscriminately and en masse (which you will hardly ever wear anyway), but that you buy long-lasting, timeless and beautiful fashion items that you truly adore. It’s about being more discerning.
And that brings us to the second advantage of slow fashion, which is durability. Fast fashion is produced as fast as possible, at a low priced and in low quality. In comparison, slow fashion is made with diligence and high quality standards to be durable and long-lasting. In short, when you buy a slow fashion product you can expect it to serve you over many seasons and years.
3. Saving money in the long run
One advantage of slow fashion that may not immediately occur to you is that you will save money in the long run. Even though slow fashion brands are usually more pricey than the usual fast fashion chains, you would still spend less money over time, as you’d buy fewer clothes that last longer. Makes perfect sense, right? When we think about the countless poorly-made items we’ve bought, it all adds up to a hefty amount wasted away on fast fashion, when we could have stacked up on cool, long-lasting gems from sustainable brands we love.
4. Minimizing your ecological footprint
Reduced consumption naturally ensures that we minimize our ecological footprint. Slow fashion helps us save resources, lower our CO2 emissions and thus make a smaller impact on the environment and climate change. Read this other post about what role the fashion industry has on the climate crisis and how carbon labels in fashion could help to minimize the ecological footprint of the entire industry.
5. Saving freshwater
Slow fashion also spares a ton of freshwater. While agriculture uses around 70% of all available freshwater, fast fashion also contributes substantially to freshwater shortages and water pollution. And although we can only drink a small fraction of the water on Earth, our precious freshwater is wasted away in the production and dyeing processes of fast fashion. To add insult to injury, this water is then released back into nature as polluted waste water. Slow fashion limits the discharge of waste water into rivers and lakes, reducing the impact on biodiversity and water supplies.
At SANVT, we dye all fabrics without harmful chemicals or heavy metals. And not only that, our facilities have closed water loops and recycle 99.9% of the wastewater produced!
6. Protecting the oceans
Another water-related advantage of slow fashion is that it preserves oceans and aquatic life. Why? Because slow fashion is mostly made of natural and biodegradable materials that do not release microplastics when washed — unlike synthetic fabrics like polyester. And slow fashion often avoids the use of plastic packaging, which saves further waste.
7. Respecting human rights
As we’ve mentioned before, fast fashion is about producing fashion as quickly, as massively and as cheaply as possible. And while it is precisely for us, people somewhere on the other side of the world, pay a very high price. You’ve probably already seen reports of workers – including children – operating under inhumane conditions in the factories of fast fashion companies. The slow fashion movement, on the other hand, promotes fair, transparent and healthy working conditions.
At SANVT, we work exclusively with certified production partners and independent family businesses in Western Europe that treat people (and the environment) with respect.
8. Supporting brands with a purpose
Speaking of the efforts of slow fashion brands, another benefit is, of course, supporting brands with a true purpose and higher ethics. Ask any CEO of a sustainable fashion brand and they will tell you, that the core and drive of their mission is always to minimize the ecological footprint. This mindset is a reassuring concern for an entrepreneur to have, given the climate crisis unfolding before our eyes. Benjamin Heyd, founder and CEO of SANVT, says:
“Since inception, reducing our ecological footprint has been at the absolute core of our company philosophy. Through plastic-free, climate-neutral and fair production, we want to show consumers alternatives to the conventional fashion industry. However, this can only be achieved through massive transparency; that’s why visitors can (virtually) visit our production on sanvt.com or find out exactly about the eco-balance of each of our products.”
9. A clear conscience
Supporting fashion brands with a purpose naturally comes with the benefit of a clear conscience. Honestly, isn’t it blissful to know you’re buying clothing made sustainably (with all that it involves), knowing fair wages were paid to produce it? To us, it feels pretty damn good! It’s the same, guilt-free feeling you get when eating a delicious, juicy vegan burger for which you know no animal had to suffer to make.
Last but not least, one major reason why you should choose slow fashion is style. Because slow fashion is not only sustainable, it’s also (usually) extremely stylish. As slow fashion is usually made to be durable, it convinces with a time-less and minimalistic style. In comparison, fast fashion strives for the latest trends and creates pieces that cannot be seen in the streets at regular intervals. Therefore, with slow fashion, you develop your own sense of style that just looks good regardless of short-lived trends!
Overview: 10 reasons to choose slow fashion
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These are only some of many reasons to ditch fast fashion! As you see, these 10 advantages of slow fashion benefit people and the environment, and even you! Now, who on Earth would still want to buy fast fashion?