Clothes are important, we wear them everyday, but something that has been rising up in the past couple of decades is fast fashion. Most people tend to have a lot of different pieces of clothing. Perfectly fine pieces of clothes, but that doesn’t stop them going out and continuing to purchase more.
In general, the global fashion industry has seen steady market growth since 2012. There is certainly a generational thing where the younger generations are leading the charge and continually purchasing more and more clothing, and there are even a lot of clothes in their wardrobe that they don’t even wear.
People these days are buying way more clothes then they did even compared to just 6 years ago. So why is this? Why are people these days buying more clothes then their wardrobe can probably even fit, and then throwing out perfectly good pieces of clothing simply because it isn’t new anymore? This is the growth and power of fast fashion.
The World of Fast Fashion
When people think about fashion they think about trends, people generally want to look good and also be on trend. In fashion trends change probably more often then the seasons do, so people tend to like to keep up with the latest and greatest. Instead of the typical four changes to fashion every year (i.e. with the seasons), there is now said to be 52 changes to fashion trends each year (i.e. a new trend each week).
Consumers like to buy new things to keep up, but unless you are super wealthy they can’t really be purchasing clothes and accessories from top expensive brands. This is where the likes of H&M, Forever 21 and Zara have all stepped in to fill the gap for the consumer. Their products are low cost, which means every time a consumer wants a new outfit, it won’t break the bank.
How Fast Fashion Brands Rose To Success?
To put it simply, it is all in the supply chain. Ensuring the that supply chain is a fast as possible and there are no weak links, allows fast fashion brands to keep their prices at a more competitive rate. Zara is the perfect example of this, it only takes the brand about 2 weeks to finish a new design and get the product made and sent out to large proportion of their stores.
Clothes are being produced on such a mass scale, but consumers are still buying, so the brands will continue to keep producing. The streamlined supply chain allows for fast fashion brands to only order in small amounts of stock to the physical stores. They are then able to get a proper read on how popular certain products are and order in more if required.
The Reach of Fast Fashion
Fast fashion has certainly taken over the world and it has reached a lot of different countries. Many like to compare fast fashion to fast food, if you think about it, there is a McDonalds in pretty much every country in the world, and no matter which country you are in, it is probably going to taste similar to what you were expecting.
The growth of fast fashion stores is also incredible. Look at H&M for example; a few years ago in 2016, they opened over 400 stores. They didn’t have 400 stores in 2016, they OPENED 400 stores in 2016! H&M is now in over 60 countries right across the world and has a very big share of the fast fashion market. Looking at another big player in the fast fashion market, Zara, opened around 500 new locations in 2017.