Celebs and style icons such as Lily Cole, Arizona Muse and more are challenging us all to a wardrobe detox, but what does that really entail? We ask them for their thoughts and secret tips on how to build a lasting wardrobe.
It’s been weeks (and, for some, months) since many of us started spending our time in isolation at home, and we’re pretty sure by this time, you’ve tried everything to keep yourself occupied — whether it’s learning new recipes from top chefs, taking on creative instachallenges, keeping yourselves in top shape with fitness tutorials — so we think it’s time you add another activity to your to-do list: Giving your wardrobe a detox.
There are many benefits to giving your wardrobe a much-needed clear-out. To start, it opens up space for new pieces, and just the decluttering process alone is great for your mental health, making it a perfectly suitable activity right now when everyone is feeling anxious with the lack of social life.
Also, at a time when even the biggest players in the fashion industry are picking up the pace with their efforts towards sustainability, the situation has really shed a light on the dire need to break our old shopping habits. Detoxing our wardrobe will allow us to take a second look at the environmental impact of our wardrobe choices.
So, how do you begin this mammoth task of decluttering? Vestiaire Collective, the online luxury resaler, has some tips for you, as they team up with some of their stylish and environmental activist friends around the world — from Lily Cole to Arizona Muse and Hong Kong’s very own Cara G. — to challenge us all to a ‘Wardrobe Reality Check’ — an initiative that celebrates the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, which lands on 22 April.
These celebrities and style icons have also gone a step further by putting up their cleared out fashion pieces for sale on Vestiaire Collective to give them a chance of a second life — helping to participate in the more sustainable circular fashion cycle. All proceeds from the sale will go to their chosen charitable organisations that focus on protecting the planet.
We’ve took this chance to ask each of these participants about their thoughts on circular fashion, and to offer some insights on putting together a sustainable and stylish wardrobe. Scroll down to see what each of them have to say, and head here for the four simple steps to embark on your own wardrobe reality check.
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What is the ideal wardrobe you’re going for? What do you hope to achieve from taking the challenge?
I hope to achieve a refined wardrobe with a much lower environmental impact and, in the process, learn even more about the choices I make and the materials from which my clothes are made. For me, that’s the best place to start if you’re curious about sustainability.
It’s important to know, for example, that cotton is one of the most harmful crops in the world (along with soy and wheat), because it uses an immense amount of chemical fertilisers, pesticides and herbicides every year, which then contaminates soil and runs off into water supplies.
Why do you think more young people are turning to resale as a sustainable alternative to fast fashion?
Resale is exciting because it has a number of benefits. First, it’s more sustainable than producing something new. Second, it offers a more affordable way to access designer clothes. There is a small part of the fashion industry that produces clothes in a sustainable way, and I think that it’s really important to support those brands, but their pricing is often higher because it’s usually more expensive to produce things in a sustainable, socially responsible way. So I think resale offers another avenue for people to think about sustainability, and ultimately keep the products alive for longer so that we have less of a demand for creating new things.
Why do you think it’s important to be aware of the environmental impact of your wardrobe choices?
I’m sure everybody is aware that the fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world. The less we buy, the less the environment pays for it. Everyone has their own part to play, and we can start by avoiding quick fashion fixes and focus on giving each piece a longer lifespan.
Why is circular fashion important to you?
At the heart of circular fashion is waste reduction, which is integral to preserving our planet and our species.
In your opinion, what are the top three most important considerations for building a forever wardrobe?
For a wardrobe that’s designed to last, you need to start with getting the classics right. Find good basics in clean cuts, simple colours, and you can add the fun stuff on top as you need. These three factors will always be the building blocks of a great wardrobe.