Four Common Misconceptions Of Sustainable Fashion

  1. Quitting fast fashion will take away jobs in developing countries.

A common defense of fast fashion is that it provides jobs to garment workers. If everyone quit fast fashion at the same time, sure, it would be an economic disaster. But that’s an unrealistic scenario. It takes time to transform an industry and to change people’s hearts and minds.

Also, the jobs provided are usually hazardous and low-paying. An example is the 2013 Rana Plaza disaster, where a factory building in Bangladesh collapsed, killing over 1100 workers and injuring thousands more. You can learn more about the human impact of the fashion industry in the documentary The True Cost. The 2020 pandemic also led to many brands canceling orders from factories, leaving garment workers without pay.


  1. You must eliminate fast fashion when transitioning to a sustainable wardrobe.

Sustainable fashion isn’t really about what brands are in your wardrobe. It’s more about your mindset and habits. It’s more sustainable to keep your old fast fashion and wear it than to get rid of it and buy new clothes from sustainable brands. Personally, I still regularly wear a couple of old fast fashion pieces.

If you don’t wear the clothes anymore (you haven’t worn them in the last six months), you should consider consigning them to us.

       3.  You have to be rich to afford sustainable fashion.

This is one of the biggest misconceptions out there. Yes, sustainable brands are more expensive than fast fashion. But buying from sustainable brands isn’t the only option there is. Before buying new, even from an ethical brand, consider looking for what you need secondhand. Consignment stores like ours make it much easier to find used clothing at a more affordable price.

We are finding many staple items secondhand, from sneakers to designer handbags to professional attire.

If you need to buy new and want to go through an ethical brand, research to ensure that the brand has integrity and practices its values.


  1. Buying from Consignment/Thrift stores takes away clothes from low-income families.

Some people are hesitant to shop secondhand because they think they’re taking clothes away from people who can’t afford new items. However, statistics show that only 20% of the clothes donated to thrift stores are sold.

Remember that most thrift stores aren’t the charities themselves, either. Most charities have thrift stores to make money for their programs. So if you’re thrifting, you’re supporting good causes.


Transitioning your wardrobe won’t happen overnight, and you shouldn’t put any time limit on yourself to make the switch. Creating an ethical wardrobe when you’re used to fast fashion is a drastic change and requires dismantling everything we’ve grown up knowing. 


We hope that you’ve found these tips helpful, and when you are ready to consign the clothing that you are no longer love, you will consider consigning at Consigning Women.  Please give us a call if you'd like to make an appointment @ 503-697-1636.