A Guide to Fashion and Sustainability Vocabulary
A Guide to Fashion and Sustainability Vocabulary
sustainability means acting

A Guide to Fashion and Sustainability Vocabulary

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Sustainability is something spoken of often in the fashion industry. This term may be familiar to those who follow the fashion industry closely. The Fashion and Sustainability Glossary created by Conde Nast is a helpful tool for understanding the vocabulary of the fashion industry. Several glossary terms have also appeared in this article on sustainability from VOGUE.

Fashion and Sustainability

But, in case you haven’t check those out, don’t worry! In this article, we will tell you the main sustainable words you must know of. Keep reading!

A Guide to Fashion and Sustainability Vocabulary: Carbon Neutral

Becoming carbon neutral is the goal of many fashion companies. It happens when the amount of carbon emissions you create is the same as the amount of carbon emissions you remove from the atmosphere. A carbon neutral protocol has been created, and updated as of February of this year. Its five steps, to define, measure, target, reduce, and communicate, help businesses to become carbon neutral. 

A Guide to Fashion and Sustainability Vocabulary: Carbon Offsetting

The idea of carbon offsetting may sound similar to being carbon neutral. However, this is not the case. Carbon offsetting means creating no carbon emissions at all. One way that companies offset their carbon emissions is by investing in sustainable projects. These projects, such as forest restoration, helps the environment. 

Fashion and Sustainability 1

A Guide to Fashion and Sustainability Vocabulary: Ethical Trade and Fair Trade 

Ethical trade and fair trade are two ideas that also contribute to the fashion industry. They both focus on helping make international trade work better for the poor and otherwise disadvantaged people. They may sound similar, but they don’t mean the same thing. For example, ethical trade has to do with worker’s rights. These include working hours, health and safety, freedom of association and fair wages. The idea of ethical trade started in the 1990s, when the harsh conditions of workers in the fashion industry were exposed by the media. 

The idea of fair trade began as a movement in the 1980s which was created to help farmers. More specifically, it was meant to address the unjust low price of items such as coffee, cocoa, or tea. This protected poor farmers in the international market. It also guaranteed both fair terms of trade and fair prices for producers. 

A Guide to Fashion and Sustainability Vocabulary: Fast Fashion

Fast fashion is a topic we have touched upon a lot. It is important to be aware of this topic. While clothing that is made from fast fashion is affordable, it is not good for the environment. This is because of the amount of waste that fast fashion companies produce each year. Fast fashion is made possible because of innovations in supply chain management. 

A Guide to Fashion and Sustainability Vocabulary: Net Zero

The idea of net zero emissions is very similar to the idea of being carbon neutral. This is another set of vocabulary words that people often get confused about. Sometimes, net zero emissions refer to carbon emissions. Other times, they refer to other greenhouse gas emissions. Being net zero means looking at emissions overall, and eliminating unnecessary emissions such as those from manufacturing.

Slow Fashion

Slow fashion is another term we have mentioned in several of our articles. It is essentially the opposite of fast fashion. It originally referred to the need to “slow down” fashion. Also, it is much better for the environment, because of the more sustainable methods and materials used. We recently explored the creation of eco-conscious clothing, which is an important part of sustainable fashion. 

However, there are some disadvantages to slow fashion. For example, even companies that focus on slow fashion release about 2-3 high-quality collections per year. Also, the cost to produce slow fashion is high. This is because of the amount of effort that goes into creating quality clothes at a fair cost. 

Why Does It Matter?

Learning the vocabulary that has to do with fashion and sustainability matters. It helps you to be able to think more deeply about how the fashion industry affects the environment. It also helps you to be able to compare the efforts of organizations and individuals. This way, you will be able to tell which companies are being honest about their efforts to improve the environment. This is why learning the correct terms is so important. 

Anna Swatski
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Anna Swatski
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