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Fashion has always been to fit in. But the last two decades of the 21st century have witnessed a paradigm shift in global fashion trends, the most recent being “wake up“- a Generation Z and Millennial term for being” awake “to social and environmental issues.
Appear awake in fashion
The views of these young buyers are critical when it comes to social injustice, and most of them are more than willing to change or avoid brands depending on their stance on contentious issues. This trend is increasingly forcing brands to incorporate social and green themes into their products.
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According to McKinsey & Company, an American management consulting firm, the rise of “awake” consumers was nine of the ten trends in the fashion industry in 2019.
They believe that companies have a responsibility to address environmental and social issues. This category of consumers spends approximately $ 350 billion in the United States alone. About 40 percent of global consumers are Generation Z. Not only young consumers, but also two-thirds of consumers around the world will certainly change with their stance on greening. Half of them are activists and driven by passion while the other half are destined to make a decision based on a given situation.
Brands like Levi’s and Nike have taken a clear stance on social issues in recent months. Nike is backing Colin Kaepernick, the face of the NFL anthem protests, and Levi’s is leading a campaign against gun violence in the United States. Gucci has also come forward to support a student-led march calling for more gun control in the United States.
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Fast Retailing, the parent company of Japanese retailer Uniqlo, has been recruiting refugees since 2016. British retailer ASOS has launched an exclusive lingerie line in partnership with designer Katharine Hamnett. A fashion actor, Balenciaga has collaborated with the World Food Program.
Companies like Ben & Jerry’s, Danone, Patagonia, Allbirds and Eileen Fisher have been certified for the impact of their decisions on people, society and the planet. From just seven in 2010, nearly 200 companies around the world woke up in April 2018. About 40% of their products are made from recycled and sustainable materials.
I woke up to the fast fashion place
Woke favors companies aligned with social values and responsibilities. Rapid production is in fact now considered bad for the environment because it pollutes the water, dissipates toxic chemicals.
With more than 100 billion global textile production per year, environmental groups say that if this trend continues, the environmental balance will be destroyed. As a result, the Awakened Generation has become a conscious fashion movement against this rapid trend. The awakening influence precisely gives importance to quality, ethics and sustainability over brief trends, cheap labor and unnecessary manufacturing.
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Developing greener themes in products to attract alert consumers can be risky for businesses, but the opportunities are plentiful. The situation is likely to change soon, as players in the fashion industry currently tend to dominate the movement for environmental and social awareness. The number of consumers in other sectors can be expected to increase to ensure the social engagement of global brands.