They’re baring their grievances.
Ahead of London fashion week, protesters stripped down to stand up to designer name brands, decrying the culture of single-wear pieces, rampant consumerism and rapid trend cycling.
Aiming to bring awareness to the environmental impacts of fast fashion, the group of more than a dozen objectors paraded outside the Somerset House in London dressed only in their birthday suits.
The naked demonstration, organized by secondhand e-commerce site Gumtree, called on the country’s luxury fashion houses to reconsider their practices.
“The public love affair with fast cyclical fashion is waning as awareness of the environmental crisis grows,” Gumtree CEO Hugh Hurley told The Post in a statement.
“Consumers want more sustainable choices, and those at the top of the fashion industry have a responsibility to ensure sustainability is embraced at every stage of the buying journey — from catwalk to shop floor,” Hurley added, noting that “fashion choices don’t have to cost the earth.”
London fashion week, which kicks off officially on Friday, will include showcases from designer brands with world renown, such as Burberry, AllSaints, JW Anderson and Simone Rocha.
But the pressure to rapidly revamp your wardrobe for each new internet fad has only worsened with the popularity of TikTok, which has expedited trend turnover.
While thrifting pre-loved pieces has been adopted in the mainstream, mountains of trendy garments still clog landfills in the Global South, allowing microplastics and toxins from the clothing’s synthetic fibers to ooze into the environment.
Last year, Bloomberg reported that the US trashed 11.3 million tons of textiles annually, and the industry contributed to 10% of global carbon dioxide emissions.
“We simply can’t turn a blind eye to billions of pounds worth of fashion waste ending up in landfill each year,” Hannah Rouch, a spokesperson from Gumtree, told the Independent.
“We have a collective responsibility to put an end to ‘wear it once’ culture once and for all.”
While “millions are waking up to the benefits” of shopping secondhand, Rouch is calling for a “new norm” — “second-hand first.”
“For this to happen we need the world’s leading fashion brands — those that are showcasing at London Fashion Week — to fire imaginations and showcase the style credentials of pre-loved pieces,” she said.
“Together designers and all those who love fashion can start a consumption rebellion and demonstrate that style doesn’t have to cost the earth.”
The fashion industry has been embroiled in controversy for its use of animal byproducts, such as leather, feathers and fur, but the ethical backlash hasn’t deterred designer labels from using animal-derived products in their bags, coats and shoes.
At New York Fashion Week, two People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals protesters stormed onto the Coach runway — one holding a sign reading “Coach: Leather Kills” and another dressed in a “skinned” suit depicting muscles, bones and tendons.
According to Tracy Reiman, the animal rights nonprofit executive vice president, “the future of fashion lies in innovative vegan materials.”
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