The Sad Truth: Best 5 Eye-Opening Books about Fast Fashion

Best Reads, Mindful Shopping

Sometimes, I feel that not enough of us know or choose to ignore the fact of fast fashion’s environmental impact on our planet. Here, I’m sharing the best eye-opening books about fast fashion to learn about the dark side of this industry.

According to Bloomberg, ” The U.S. throws away up to 11.3 million tons of textile waste each year — around 2,150 pieces of clothing each second”. This statistic is only for the U.S.! And what about the rest of the world…?

More and more clothing is being produced every year as retailers and consumers don’t seem to get enough of unnecessary trends. Fast fashion is developing a disposable clothing mentality at a frenetic pace! Often, production exceeds demand, and staggering numbers of fast fashion garments are unsold and sent to landfills across the globe. Only a tiny fraction of what’s manufactured gets recycled.

The issues lay not only in quantity but in quality, too. For years, poorly made, cheap-quality materials have overtaken cotton as the backbone of textile production. Roughly 70% of the $3 trillion fashion industry comprises articles made from synthetics and petrochemicals. Fibers like nylon, polyester, and acrylic are prime sources of microplastic pollution. They are forever materials that never go away and take hundreds of years to biodegrade.

Learn the sad truth from eye-opening books about fast fashion, where authors openly talk not only about waste on the planet but also about hazardous and unfair conditions for workers in the garment manufacturing process and supply chain.


The Best 5 Eye-Opening Books About Fast Fashion

Eye-Opening Books about Fast Fashion. #booksaboutfastfashion

Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion

by Elizabeth L. Cline

Journalist and former cheap fashion addict Elizabeth L. covers not only what we are doing with our clothes but, most importantly, what they are doing to us! To our society, environment, and even our beings… The writer highlights the Bangladesh disaster in 2013, in particular, where the Rana Plaza tragedy claimed 1,133 lives of garment workers. Elizabeth L. Cline was one of the first U.S. journalists to reveal fast fashion’s environmental impact on our planet. This book covers it all: environmental impact, consumer behavior, and human rights.


To Die For: Is Fashion Wearing Out the World

by Lucy Siegle

Must-read book. After thorough research, British journalist Lucy Siegle reveals devastating stories and the dark side of the fast fashion business. The detailed investigation and mind-boggling facts about environmental degradation and exploitative and unsafe labor practices are exposed, and the message is strong. Revealing the inhumane and environmentally devastating stories of garment workers from Cambodian, Bangladesh, Uzbekistan… Making readers question and rethink their practical necessities and consumption habits. The author invites industry and consumers to make urgent changes. Today, we rarely know the origins of the clothes hanging in our closets. The writer encourages us to be curious about how, where, and by whom things we buy are made and be aware of value for money: ethically, morally, and in real terms.



by Dana Thomas

There is no doubt anymore about fast fashion’s enormous environmental impact on our planet, and famous journalist Dana Thomas exposes that in her book very well. However, it is time to do something about it. The world desperately needs a cleaner and more sustainable fashion model. Dana Thomas has traveled the world to find the answers to questions about what we should do next and how to fix it. This book is full of sad, eye-opening facts about the cost of fast fashion, but Dana Thomas ends it with optimism. She promotes and suggests ideas such as 3D-printed clothing, smart manufacturing, clean denim processing, hyper-localism, fabric recycling, and even lab-grown materials. We all need to contribute to fighting for a change – for healthier living.


Wardrobe Crisis: How We Went from Sunday Best to Fast Fashion

by Clare Press

Wardrobe Crisis is one of the best eye-opening books about fast fashion. Fashion journalist Clare Press launched the U.S. edition in New York in February 2018 at the Tishman Environment and Design Center as part of The New School’s Week of Disrupting Climate Injustice. In the book, the journalist analyzes the entire fashion ecosystem. The rise and fall of department stores, the disappearance of local brands, and how major fashion houses overtake them and become the fast fashion giants they are today. The writer doesn’t fail to mention the poor working conditions in textile factories and the devastating events taking many people’s lives. Despite revealing heartbreaking stories and statistics, the book is full of fashion humor, creating an excellent balance and making reading more interesting.


Slave to Fashion

by Safia Minney

As the title suggests, “Slave to Fashion” reveals sobering truths of modern-day slavery and child labor in today’s fashion world. The book includes heartbreaking personal stories of men, women, and children caught in the enslavement of fashion supply chains making clothes for high-street brands. Fairtrade and sustainable fashion expert and founder of the brand People Tree, Safia Minney, not only exposes the sad reality but also offers a way out. The book suggests that we, as consumers, can change the demand pattern. Clothing brands rely on us for survival, so if we demonstrate that fair trade, ethical, and sustainable fashion is our choice, that will make them shift their approach to the textile industry.


If you are not keen on reading a book, check out the documentary released in 2015, The True Cost. It covers how the world consumes around 80 billion new pieces of clothing annually, 400% more than twenty years ago. The average American now generates 82 pounds of textile waste each year. These numbers are likely much higher today!

If you want to hear even a shorter version of fast fashion’s environmental impact issue, in this video, the author of “To Die For: Is Fashion Wearing out the World?” Lucy Siegle exposes the fashion industry and its inhumane consequences in 15 minutes: The Wardrobe To Die For, Lucy Siegle, TEDxSalford. Have a look.


I hope you will find books interesting, eye-opening, and inspiring to rethink your wardrobe and clothing consumption. Please familiarize yourself with the issue, and don’t leave it in silence. Recognize that we don’t need multiple trends in one month! That following fast trends is pointless and needless! We don’t need to waste lots of time and money to keep up with them.

On the opposite, embrace YOUR personal style! Learn to admire fashion from a distance and be inspired by it, but create your own fashion in your wardrobe! Individual and unique style never goes out of trend!

Our low-cost clothing comes with a hefty price, and it’s time for a Conscious Fashion Revolution. Use the fast fashion books above to spread the word and create more awareness of what the fashion industry really costs us. And as Dana Thomas, an author of Fashionopolis, says, “It’s time to get dressed with intention”.

Wardrobe Planner Workbook #Wardrobe Planner Workbook #WardrobePlannerWorkbook

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