Article written by Studio BLUP ‘Futurewears’ writer Symeon Oshea.
Last month marked a time for global awareness and reflection on how we cope with our mental and emotional welfare, especially within the workplace. FARFETCH announced in 2020 that they would be committing to the implementation of a more socially conscious approach to fashion. According to their ‘ESG’ (Environmental, Social and Governance) update — the retailer is promoting climate positivity, one hundred percent conscious products and a more circular than linear supply model.
52% of FARFETCH customers surveyed have bought or sold pre-owned luxury items in the past year. Studies performed by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation show that a majority of the clothes that consumers buy is thrown away, only 1% of this apparel will be recycled to make new clothes. 73% will be burned or buried in landfill, while 12% will be recycled for alternative purposes.
Pre-owned luxury is exploding, growing on average about three times faster than the primary luxury market. The pandemic effect looks to be accelerating this. The modern customer wants to maximize the value for their money, avoid waste, shop sustainably and leverage that aftermarket for their latest luxury purchases.
Shopping pre-owned is a sustainable act in and of itself, as its environmental impact is much lower than shopping brand new. These modern sustainability practices have caused a large amount of brands including Gucci, Prada, Burberry, Acne Studios, Mulberry, Marine Serre and Heron Preston to step in and facilitate action in these areas as well.
In addition to environmental sustainability, FARFETCH takes things one step further by providing their workers with a slew of resources to make the work environment as positive of an experience for everyone. Their newly created project group is dedicated to sharing tips and experiences to support a roster of work from home workers.
Just last year, FARFETCH introduced ‘Caring Days’. As a part of their aptly named “Positively Farfetch” mission to become the global platform for social good in luxury fashion, the retailer is offering giveback days, two days of annual volunteering where employees can support a social cause of their choice.
By promoting time off, employees are better able to stay connected to the people they care about most. Despite all of the challenges that the fashion industry is currently facing, it’s important that we highlight how capable corporations can be when innovation has no motive.
Speaking of challenges faced within the fashion field — according to The International Conference on Addiction and Associated Disorders, people in the fashion industry are almost 25% more likely to experience mental illness than any other industry. Why? This is largely due to the immense pressure on models and designers to consistently stay on top of the latest trends, and execute them. This creates a constant burden on the shoulders of those in the industry causing them to continuously doubt themselves and to overwork in order to stay relevant.
The pressure is heating up and is felt not only at the top of the fashion industry, but within society as well, particularly in teenagers. New generation teens face pressure to keep an updated wardrobe or be subject to judgement by their peers. This has created an unhealthy link between how we perceive ourselves and the psychology of fashion. The only way to counteract these effects is to first figure out what led us here in the first place.
We’re entering an age where we’re seeing an increase in value of transparency, authenticity and the overall greater good.
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