Will Fast Fashion Be Replaced By Digital Fashion?

(Credit: freestocks)

Sustainability has become the main focus of fast fashion retailers for the upcoming decades... but do we have time to wait until they fully become “planet positive”?

Brands have woken up to the inevitably contaminating reality of the industry, and decided to implement new ways of creating clothes, by using materials that are either recycled, organic or sustainably sourced.

Such is the case of H&M, a retailer that has tried to do better since 2015 by using farms with strong animal welfare principles. But while its plans for issues like transportation and fair wages for factory workers are well-intentioned, it won’t be until 2040 that they can start calling themselves fully “planet positive”. But reality is, we don’t have time to wait two more decades. Especially not with the Instagram effect.

(Credit: Mateus Campos Felipe )

Social media changed the fashion game forever. It went from being a cool place to share everyday pics of our meals, to a super powered machine where everybody wants to be an influencer. Photos are now being taken with professional cameras, and photoshop became essential, as well as color correction, VSCO’s filters which, altogether, present an evocative jetset lifestyle.

While this may not be everyone’s reality, the fear of repeating a garment in a picture is the fear of many “influencers” today. Fast fashion serves as their biggest ally to have swift access to new clothes that come with an affordable price tag. The pollution that this has created is, to say the least, concerning.

(Credit: StockPhoto, by Vchalup)

With digital fashion, customers can be even more creative with their outfits, they can have accessibility to visually pleasing garments (some being more fun to wear than those in the physical world) and they can give them utility by having them overlaid on pictures of themselves, ready to be posted in their IG feed.

The power of Augmented Reality (AR) clothing is also immense and the development of body tracking technologies will take us closer to seeing digital fashion not only on social media, but as part of film, television and music videos.

The reductions in textile, water and resource waste by having a fully digital sampling and design process, makes digital fashion the perfect alternative to physical retailers.

The only thing keeping digital fashion away from replacing fast fashion, is the lack of a mass-market supply chain. As technology evolves, digital fashion retailers such as Replicant Fashion, DressX, and Joyfa will most likely overtake the market owned by fast fashion retailers.

And the best part is that we won’t have to wait until 2040 for that to happen.
The future is now.

To discover more, join our FashionFridays on Instagram, which includes a series of live sessions with designers, brand consultants, and creatives, to start meaningful conversations about the future of fashion.

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