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100+ Fast Fashion Brands To Avoid & Why They’re Terrible for the Planet

January 27, 2024Lifestyle

Here’s our list of 2024’s biggest fast fashion brands to avoid at all costs. These unethical clothing brands not only generate massive amounts of waste but also actively harm millions of workers in the process. It’s time we held accountable those brands turning a blind eye to the impact of their actions. Read on to learn more about the fast fashion environmental impact and the retailers that don’t deserve your money or support.

The Worst Fast Fashion Brands to Avoid in 2024

 

So, why is fast fashion bad?  Before we just right into the fast fashion brands list, let’s have a look at the fast fashion environmental impact. Unethical fast fashion brands are notorious for their breakneck speed in churning out new trends, fueled by low prices and disposable clothing. The environmental cost of this race to the bottom is staggering – from excessive water usage to toxic chemical releases and mountains of textile waste. In fact, the fashion industry is responsible for the consumption of 79 trillion liters of water annually, contributing to about 20% of industrial wastewater. That’s hardly a surprise given that 92 million tonnes of textiles waste is produced every year.  

The Global Fashion Agenda estimates that the fashion industry’s carbon footprint could swell to 2.8 billion tons of CO2 by 2030 if we don’t pump the brakes on this trend-driven train. The Ellen MacArthur Foundation reports that the equivalent of one garbage truck of textiles is wasted every second – yes, every second! This is the stark reality we face, and it’s high time we make informed choices about where we invest our fashion dollars.

 

What Is Wrong With Fast Fashion?

In addition to polluting our Earth and wasting tons of natural resources, the world’s biggest fast fashion brands are also involved in modern-day slavery. For example, during a 2020 investigation, a Boohoo supplier’s factory in Leicester, UK was accused of paying meager wages as little as £3.50 ($4.40) an hour, well below the national living wage. The workers were subjected to unsafe conditions that were a clear violation of workers’ rights.

H&M, one of the worst fast fashion brands of 2024, was on the list of names associated with the Rana Plaza factory disaster. The building collapsed, killing 1,134 workers and injuring over 2,500, making it one of the deadliest industrial disasters in history.

We can’t talk about the top fast fashion brands to avoid without mentioning the OG of unethical business practices – SHEIN. In SEIN’s Chinese factories, workers are forced to produce a staggering 500 pieces of clothing per day. Shockingly, this translates to a meager payment of just 3p per item they create according to the Channel 4 documentary titled “Untold: Inside The Shein Machine.”

As consumers, our choices matter. By supporting transparent, fair trade, and sustainable clothing brands, we can send a powerful message to the fashion industry. Let’s choose quality over quantity, and together, we can redefine fashion as a force for good. 

Which Brands Are Fast Fashion?

 

It’s pretty easy to pinpoint which are the biggest fast fashion brands to avoid in 2024. All you have to do is look at their rapid production cycles, low-cost strategies, and sometimes questionable labor and environmental practices. 

Fast fashion brands often offer products at extremely low prices. If a brand consistently sells clothing at prices that seem too good to be true, it may be an indication of a fast fashion approach. Fast fashion brands tend to have a high turnover of styles and a large inventory. If a brand constantly introduces a wide range of new styles and has a vast inventory, it could be a sign of a fast fashion approach.

Ethical and sustainable practices are typically not associated with fast fashion. Check a brand’s transparency about its supply chain, labor practices, and environmental impact. If this information is not readily available or seems vague, it might raise concerns.

It’s always a good idea to check a brand’s latest initiatives, certifications, and reports on labor and environmental practices to make an informed decision about supporting them.

 

The 153 Worst Fast Fashion Brands to Avoid in 2024

  1. & Other Stories
  2. 18Montrose
  3. Abercrombie & Fitch
  4. Accessorize
  5. Afound
  6. Agent Provocateur
  7. Amazon
  8. Anthropologie
  9. ARKET
  10. ASOS (Check out our sustainability report)
  11. AsYou
  12. Banana Republic ( Check out our full review here)
  13. Bershka
  14. BHLD
  15. Billabong
  16. Bonmarché
  17. Boohoo
  18. BoohooMAN
  19. Burton
  20. Campri
  21. Coast
  22. Collusion
  23. COS
  24. Cruise
  25. DC Shoes
  26. Debenhams
  27. Dorothy Perkins
  28. Edinburgh Woollen Mill
  29. Evans
  30. Everlast
  31. F&F at Tesco
  32. Fabletics
  33. Fashion Nova
  34. Femme Luxe
  35. Fila
  36. Firetrap
  37. Flannels
  38. Forever 21
  39. Free People (Read our full review of Free People)
  40. GAP
  41. Gelert
  42. George at ASDA
  43. Gilly Hicks
  44. Gul
  45. H&M
  46. HERA
  47. Hollister
  48. House of Fraser
  49. In The Style
  50. I Saw It First
  51. Jack Wills
  52. J.Crew
  53. J.Crew Factory
  54. Jane Norman
  55. ANYDAY at John Lewis
  56. Kangol
  57. Karen Millen
  58. Karrimor
  59. LA Gear
  60. La Senza
  61. Lillywhites
  62. Loavies
  63. Lonsdale
  64. Lovell Sports
  65. Madewell
  66. Mango
  67. Marks & Spencer
  68. Massimo Dutti
  69. Matalan
  70. Mennace
  71. Meshki
  72. Missguided
  73. Misspap
  74. Miss Fiori
  75. Miss Selfridge
  76. Missy Empire
  77. Monki
  78. Monsoon
  79. Motel
  80. Mothercare
  81. Nasty Gal
  82. New Chic
  83. New Look
  84. Next
  85. No Fear
  86. Nobody’s Child
  87. Nutmeg at Morrissons
  88. Oasis
  89. Oh Polly
  90. Old Navy
  91. Oliver Bonas
  92. Outfit
  93. Peacocks
  94. Pretty Little Thing
  95. Primark
  96. Pull & Bear
  97. Quiksilver
  98. QUIZ
  99. Reclaimed Vintage
  100. REVOLVE
  101. REVOLVEman
  102. River Island
  103. Romwe (Read our full Romwe review)
  104. Roxy
  105. SHEIN
  106. Slazenger
  107. Sondico
  108. SoulCal
  109. Sports Direct
  110. Stradivarius
  111. Superdry
  112. Temu
  113. TK Maxx
  114. Topman
  115. Topshop
  116. Tu Clothing at Sainsbury’s
  117. UNIQLO (Read more about UNIQLO here)
  118. United Colors of Benetton
  119. Urban Outfitters (Read our full review here)
  120. USA Pro
  121. USC
  122. Van Mildert
  123. Victoria’s Secret
  124. Wallis
  125. Warehouse
  126. Weekday
  127. Zaful
  128. Zara (Check out our Zara review)
  129. Cotton On
  130. Rue21
  131. Forever New
  132. Dynamite
  133. Garage
  134. SHEIKE
  135. Windsor
  136. Charlotte Russe
  137. Showpo
  138. Sabo Skirt
  139. Tiger Mist
  140. Ally Fashion
  141. Glassons
  142. Factorie
  143. Valleygirl
  144. Ardene
  145. Maurices
  146. Fashion to Figure
  147. Suzy Shier
  148. Papaya Clothing
  149. Eclipse
  150. Tobi
  151. Lulus
  152. Dissh
  153. The Iconic

7 Reasons To Avoid Fast Fashion at All Costs

Environmental Impact: Fast fashion contributes significantly to environmental degradation. The excessive use of resources, water pollution from dyes and chemicals, and the massive volume of textile waste are just a few examples of how this industry harms our planet.

Exploitative Labor Practices: Many fast fashion brands have been criticized for exploiting cheap labor in developing countries, where workers are subjected to low wages, poor working conditions, and even unsafe environments. Supporting such practices perpetuates human rights abuses.

Poor Quality and Short Lifespan: Fast fashion often prioritizes quantity over quality. Clothes are designed to be worn a few times before falling apart, promoting a culture of disposability. Investing in durable, higher-quality items can save money in the long run and reduce overall consumption.

Negative Impact on Local Economies: The exploitation of cheap labor in developing countries can have detrimental effects on local economies. Instead of fostering sustainable growth, fast fashion often perpetuates a cycle of poverty and dependency.

Lack of Transparency: Fast fashion brands are often criticized for a lack of transparency in their supply chains. This opacity makes it difficult for consumers to know the true environmental and ethical impact of the products they purchase.

Health Concerns: The use of toxic chemicals in dyeing and finishing processes can pose health risks to both factory workers and consumers. Sustainable fashion options prioritize non-toxic and eco-friendly fabrics and safer production methods. Some options include Tencel, Bamboo, Organic cotton, and Econyl

Supports a Throwaway Culture: Fast fashion perpetuates a culture of disposable clothing, where garments are worn a few times and then discarded. This not only contributes to landfills but also diminishes the value we place on the items we own.

7 Simple Steps to Avoid Fast Fashion

Educate Yourself

 

Start by learning about the fast fashion environmental impact and how these unethical clothing brands violate human rights. Understand the key issues such as excessive resource consumption, exploitative labor practices, and the high environmental cost of disposable fashion. Knowledge is the first step toward making informed and sustainable choices.

Prioritize Quality Over Quantity

 

Instead of succumbing to the allure of cheap, trendy clothing that may not last, focus on building a quality wardrobe. Invest in timeless, durable pieces made from sustainable materials. High-quality items tend to have a longer lifespan, reducing the need for frequent replacements.

Explore Secondhand and Vintage Shopping

 

Embrace the treasure hunt of secondhand and vintage shopping. Thrift stores, consignment shops, and online platforms for pre-owned fashion allow you to find unique pieces while minimizing your contribution to the demand for new, mass-produced items. This not only reduces waste but also promotes a circular fashion economy.

Mend and Upcycle

 

Instead of discarding clothing with minor damage or wear, consider learning basic mending and sewing skills. Repairing your garments extends their lifespan and reduces the need for constant replacements. Additionally, get creative with upcycling – transform old pieces into something new and unique, giving them a second life in your wardrobe.

Support Sustainable and Ethical Brands

 

Discover and support affordable sustainable fashion brands that prioritize sustainability, ethical labor practices, and transparency. Look for certifications such as Fair Trade, Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), or other recognized ethical and environmental standards. Many brands are now committed to reducing their environmental footprint and improving social responsibility.

Adopt a Minimalist Mindset

 

Embrace a minimalist approach to your wardrobe by curating a collection of versatile, high-quality items that you genuinely love and will wear regularly. This mindset helps you resist the urge to constantly chase the latest trends and encourages a more mindful and intentional approach to fashion.

Plan Your Purchases Mindfully

 

Before making a new clothing purchase, take a moment to assess your wardrobe and identify any gaps. Plan your purchases strategically, focusing on items that complement your existing pieces and serve multiple purposes. This thoughtful approach helps prevent impulsive buys and contributes to a more intentional and sustainable closet.

Conclusion

The extensive list of over 100 fast fashion brands to avoid serves as a stark reminder of the urgent need for change. From environmental degradation to exploitative labor practices, these fast fashion retailers

have been at the forefront of a throwaway culture that sacrifices our planet and its people for fleeting fashion trends. Let’s shift our focus away from the biggest fast fashion brands and towards brands that prioritize ethical practices, environmental responsibility, and transparency in their operations. 

About Author

Konstantina Antoniadou

Sustainability writer, with almost ten years of expertise in media and publishing. Focused on helping conscious readers discover the best fashion, skincare & non-toxic home products on the eco market.  Her work has been featured on various digital magazines and blogs, and she continues to strive towards making a positive impact through her writing.