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A Guide To Buying Clothing That Lasts

HomeStyle

March 19, 2021

Do we really wear every single piece we buy? If yes, how long do they last? If you’re seeking ways to embrace the concept of slow fashion and want to buy durable garments, we’ve prepared a guide to buying clothing that will actually last.

According to The New York Times, “On average, each American produces about 75 pounds of textile waste per year.” With the boom of clothing brands adopting the so-called fast-fashion business model, the amount of money we spend on our wardrobe has also increased. 

Brands like Zara, Forever 21 and H&M focus on selling low-priced items at high volumes. Zara, for example, releases 20,000 new designs a year — a strategy purposedly designed to encourage customers to shop regularly for new looks. 

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In the same NY Times article, it says that “from 2000 to 2014 the number of garments the average person purchased each year also increased by 60 percent. A separate study found that fast fashions are constructed so that they typically last no more than 10 wearings.”

If fast fashion products are purposely designed to not last, should we really keep on investing our money in “disposable” clothes? Isn’t better to choose quality garments that will actually last?

Avoid trends

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Before spending your money on items that are costing a bargain, ask yourself a few questions:

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  • Am I really going to wear this?
  • Do I really like it?
  • Does it fit well?
  • Does it match with the other garments and items I already have?
  • Is it just a trendy piece or something I can wear all seasons?

What’s made of?

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Read the label and check where was the garment made and what is made of. The fabric quality can tell a lot if the item will last longer. Look at stitching to check the garment’s quality too. They should be straight, and places, where seams meet should be neat. A piece of good fabric with prints and strips should have its patterns meet neatly at the seam.

Look for natural materials and avoid synthetic fibers. Man-made fibers aren’t biodegradable and when they turn into waste, most of them will end up in landfills.

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How does it feel?

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“If something feels rough to the touch it’s not going to feel comfortable on your body,” said Cora Harrington, the author of the book “In Intimate Detail” and the founder and editor-in-chief of The Lingerie Addict website.

When something doesn't feel comfortable, it's true that we tend to dispose more quickly than comfy ones. If wool sweaters make you itch, for example, don’t buy them.

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