Garage is one of those names that instantly strike you when you think of fast fashion.
The Canadian retailer is known for its trendy, affordable clothes and its willingness to experiment with new styles – all qualities that make it a favourite among fashion-savvy teenagers and young adults.
But is Garage really fast fashion?
There is no doubt that Garage is a fast-fashion retailer.
It is part of a group of companies, Dynamite, that includes Forever 21, H&M, Old Navy etc, all known for their quick turnaround of new styles.
However, Garage does have some unique characteristics that set it apart from its fast-fashion counterparts, which is why ladies love it!
Do you want to know more about it? Let’s get straight to the point!
Is Garage Ethically Made?
The answer is, unfortunately, no!
Like most fast-fashion retailers, Garage does not disclose where their clothes are made or their working conditions in their factories.
This lack of transparency makes it difficult to know if the workers who make our clothes are treated fairly and paid a livable wage.
But, we know that a large majority of fast-fashion garments are made in developing countries where labour laws are often weak or not enforced.
This means that workers can be subject to long hours, forced overtime, and meagre wages.
So, while Garage’s clothes may be affordable, the cost is often borne by the workers who make them.
Is Garage Clothing Made in Sweatshops?
There is no way to know for sure, but it is likely.
Most fast-fashion clothing is made in developing countries where labour laws are not always enforced.
This creates an environment where workers can be exploited and treated poorly.
So, while Garage does not clearly say that their clothes are made in sweatshops, it is a distinct possibility.
Does Garage Use Child Labour?
This is another difficult question to answer.
While Garage does not specifically say that they use child labour, it is again a distinct possibility.
Many fast-fashion retailers outsource their production to factories in developing countries where child labour laws are often not enforced.
So, while we cannot say for sure that Garage uses child labour, it is a real possibility.
What Materials Does Garage Use?
Garage clothing is made from various materials, but polyester, cotton, and rayon are the most common.
These materials are often used in fast-fashion garments because they are cheap and easy to work with.
However, they are also not very eco-friendly.
Polyester, for example, is a synthetic fibre made from petroleum, and it takes a lot of energy and water to produce.
It also doesn’t break down easily, which means it can end up in landfill sites that will take hundreds of years to decompose.
Cotton is another common material used in fast fashion.
While it is a natural fibre, it is often grown using harmful pesticides and chemicals.
Hence, Garage’s use of these materials is not unusual for a fast-fashion retailer, but it is something to be aware of if you are looking for more eco-friendly options.
What is Garage’s Environmental Impact?
The environmental impact of fast fashion is well documented, and it’s not pretty.
The clothing industry is one of the largest polluters globally, responsible for 10% of global carbon emissions and 85% of the world’s wastewater.
The impact of fast fashion is particularly evident in the garment manufacturing process, which often uses a lot of water and energy.
Moreover, dyeing and finishing clothes are also very polluting, as it releases harmful chemicals into the air and water.
Therefore, the garage’s environmental impact is significant but not out of step with other fast-fashion retailers.
What is Garage’s Stance on Sustainability?
The garage does not explicitly state anything about sustainability on its website, but like its sister brand H&M, Old Navy etc., the company is looking forward to adopting a more sustainable approach!
The brand plans on switching to natural raw materials like organic cotton and linen by 2030.
It is also working to reduce water waste and emissions throughout its supply chain.
This is all very encouraging, but until we see some substantial changes, it’s hard to say how sincere Garage’s commitment to sustainability is.
So, is Garage fast fashion?
The answer is yes!
The retailer is part of a group of companies known for their quick turnaround of new styles and their lack of transparency regarding labour practices.
This means that the workers who make our clothes are often paid very little and work in poor conditions.
It also means that the clothes are often made from cheap, synthetic materials that are not eco-friendly.
Suppose you are looking for a more sustainable option. In that case, we recommend shopping at a vintage or second-hand store or investing in higher quality pieces from brands that are transparent about their labour practices and use sustainable materials.