9 Reasons Why Shopping Vintage is Good for the Planet

In a world that is increasingly recognising the importance of sustainability and the need to protect our planet, more and more people are turning to vintage clothing for their fashion needs. Why? Because not only is vintage clothing good for the planet, but it has a timeless style that never goes out of fashion.

We have listed 9 reasons why shopping vintage is not only great for your budget but also great for the environment.


Introduction to Vintage Clothing

When it comes to fashion, vintage clothing is all the rage these days. And rightfully so. Not only is shopping for vintage clothing a great way to find unique and one-of-a-kind pieces, but it’s also good for the planet. Here are some of the reasons why:

  1. Good for the Environment
  2. Reduces Waste
  3. Upscaling from Landfills
  4. Creates Less Pollution
  5. Reuse and Recycle Clothes
  6. Support Local Shops
  7. Promotes Fair Trade
  8. Durable Material and Quality Clothing

Let’s examine each of these reasons in greater detail.


Reason #1: Good for the Environment

Vintage shopping is good for the environment for a number of reasons. 

One reason is that it helps to reduce textile waste. The fashion industry is riddled with waste. It is one of the most polluting industries in the world, and a lot of this pollution comes from textile waste. 

Every year, 92 million tons of textiles are produced and sent to landfills and it will even get worse by 2030 as global emissions from the apparel industry are projected to increase by 50% according to the latest statistics released by Earth.org. 

When you shop vintage, you are reusing clothes instead of sending them to a landfill. When you buy vintage clothing, you are contributing to the circular economy, which aims to keep resources in use for as long as possible.

By choosing to buy second-hand clothing, you are helping to reduce the demand for new clothing, which requires the use of resources to produce. This is simply keeping clothing out of landfills which can take hundreds of years to decompose and release harmful chemicals into the environment. 

Perhaps, the best argument for favouring shopping and using vintage clothing is that it reduces water consumption. It takes a huge amount of water to produce new clothing. In fact, it takes about 2,700 litres of water to make just one t-shirt in a study published in the Florida State University Sustainable Campus journal.

Finally, vintage shopping is good for the environment because it uses less energy than buying new clothes. The fashion industry is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions and global warming. By shopping vintage, you are not only contributing to this water consumption, but you are also helping to reduce your carbon footprint and do your bit to save the planet.


Reason #2: Reducing Waste

There are a number of reasons why shopping vintage is good for the planet. One of them is that it helps reduce waste.

When you shop vintage, you are essentially recycling clothes. You are giving clothes that would otherwise be discarded, a new life. This reduces the amount of waste that ends up in landfills.

In addition, vintage clothing is often better made than modern clothing. It is often made with superior materials that are designed to last longer. As a result, you don’t have to replace your clothes as often, which also reduces waste. 


Reason #3: Upscaling from Landfills

Upscaling refers to the process of taking an existing item, a home decor, a piece of clothing, or furniture, and giving it a new and improved look to make it appear more valuable or appealing. In fashion, upscaling often involves transforming an old or used piece of clothing into a modern and stylish outfit.

When it comes to upscaling from landfills, vintage shopping is a great way to do your part in reducing waste. This could mean anything from restoring an old piece of furniture to giving new life to a vintage dress.

Not only does upscaling keep items out of landfills, but it also reduces the need for new resources. When you reuse something, you’re essentially getting two (or more) uses out of one product – which is great for both the environment and your wallet.

So next time you’re looking for a unique item, consider checking out your local charity store or antique shop. You never know what hidden treasures you might find – and you’ll be doing your part to help the planet in the process.


Reason #4: Creates Less Pollution

One of the main reasons shopping vintage is good for the planet is because it creates less pollution. The fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world, and a lot of that pollution comes from the manufacturing process.

When you buy vintage clothing, you’re not contributing to that pollution. The clothing has already been made, so there’s no need for any additional resources to be used in its production. In addition, vintage clothing often lasts longer than new clothing, so you’ll end up creating less waste over time.


Reason #5: Reuse and Recycle Clothes

In the United States, the average person throws away about 65 pounds of clothing per year. While there is currently no available data about how much waste is produced by an average person in Ireland, the figure released by the United States is a clear indication of how much waste is produced by every person on the planet.

Astounding and shocking as it might seem, a lot of this clothing ends up in landfills, where it takes up valuable space and emits methane gas as it decomposes.

One way to reduce the amount of clothing that ends up in landfills is to donate or sell your unwanted apparel. But, hey, there’s another way. Better reuse and recycle them instead.

You can also repurpose vintage clothing into other items, such as rags or quilts. Another way is to donate them to organisations that provide clothing to people in need.


Reason #6: Support Local Shops

When you shop vintage, you are supporting local businesses. These small businesses are vital to the economy and provide many jobs. They also add character to our communities.

When you buy vintage clothing, your money goes directly to the shop owner and not to a large corporate entity. This helps keep our local stores alive and thriving. Not to mention, you’ll be able to find unique items that you can’t find anywhere else. 

It’s always great to show your support for local businesses and when you shop vintage, you’re doing just that.

Both the economy and the environment benefit when you shop at local shops. Shopping vintage in local shops reduces transportation emissions because clothes don’t need to be shipped from elsewhere to get to the shops.

Doing so also supports small businesses and helps to keep money in the local community and fosters a sense of community and connection between neighbours.


Reason #7: Promotes Fair Trade

When you buy vintage clothing, you are supporting workers in developing countries who are paid a fair wage for their work. Vintage clothing is also often made from natural fibres that are better for the environment.

Fast fashion often relies on low-wage labour and poor working conditions in countries with weak labour laws, contributing to the exploitation of workers in these countries.

On the other hand, buying vintage clothing supports the resale market and reduces the demand for new clothing, helping to create a more sustainable and equitable fashion industry. 


Reason #8: Durable Material and Quality Clothing

When you shop vintage, you are investing in clothing that is built to last. The materials and construction of vintage clothing are far superior to modern-day fast fashion. 

Vintage clothing is also typically better made than contemporary clothing, meaning it will last longer and stand up to regular wear and tear. Why so? It is simply because, in the past, clothing was designed to last. The rise of capitalism has had a huge impact on the textile industry which encouraged the manufacture of clothes that require frequent replacement.