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The Human Cost of Fast Fashion

The Human Cost of Fast Fashion

The fast fashion movement has grown in recent years with $99 billion spent globally in 2022 alone. Fast fashion consumers are buying clothes more often and using them less, contributing to a large amount of clothing ending up in landfills. One solution to this could be found in upcycling, which uses already-existing materials to produce new products, minimizing waste in both production and the end of a product’s life. 

What Is Fast Fashion?

Fast fashion produces clothing and other fashion accessories quickly to keep up with ever-changing trends. This method of fashion production attempts to satisfy the needs of consumers in search of cheap, stylish options. Because of its quick production and cheaper price tag, the quality of the clothing and fashion accessories is significantly lesser. 

Any type of fashion or fashion accessory can be produced through fast fashion, contributing to the industry’s harmful effects on the environment. Because the quality is lesser, items like handbags have a shorter lifespan because of the need for a durable material. Consumers could find much more use out of a strong, upcycled tote bag than a cheaper fast fashion bag that cannot withstand the weight of what you may want to carry. 

Why Is Fast Fashion Bad?

The biggest problem with fast fashion is the amount of waste in both fashion and resources used during production. High demand globally for trendy yet cheap fashion has made it difficult to combat fast fashion and its harmful effects on the ecosystem. 

According to a report from the Princeton Student Climate Initiative, approximately 20% of global wastewater is attributed to textile dyeing. Because of toxic chemicals used in this process, the water cannot be treated for reuse. 

When clothing is created to follow current trends, that means it also goes out of style when that trend does. This only makes it desirable for shorter time periods. When fast fashion clothing items go out of style, they are often discarded. Fast fashion clothing is hard to break down over time, leading to a global issue in increasing landfills. 


It takes a lot of energy to produce clothing in factories. The global fashion industry accounts for 1.3 billion tons of CO2 per year. Through fast fashion, this number goes up. If consumers bought higher-quality, more sustainable clothing, the amount of greenhouse gasses emitted from the fashion industry per year would drastically decrease. Upcycled fashion contributes to the solution by repurposing already-existing materials without contributing additional pollution from more production. 

Pollution into the ocean is another major issue from the fast fashion industry. Harmful wastewater from fast fashion often ends up in the ocean, where it can harm entire underwater ecosystems with toxic chemicals. 


Waste comes in several forms in the fashion industry. For one, when a consumer no longer wants their clothing or fashion accessory, it often ends up discarded, which can leave clothing in landfills. Production also accounts for wasted resources, such as water that cannot be reused when exposed to toxic chemicals that create dyes. 

For bags, waste can also come from single-use plastic bags. In the U.S., eight states have already banned or placed strict regulations on single-use plastic bags: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, New York, Oregon, and Vermont. This makes choosing a durable, high-quality reusable bag even more essential. 

Fast Fashion Quality vs. Upcycling

Because fast fashion is made quickly to keep up with trends, it sacrifices much of the quality seen in fashion that is handmade, upcycled, or sustainable. Fast fashion is designed to last only as long as ever-changing trends. It is discarded much faster because of the cheaper quality during its production. 

Upcycling uses materials of higher quality that can be repurposed for a new product. These materials are often durable materials, such as PVC, that can last for years to come. On the Road Again uses deadstock and remnant materials to upcycle for tote bags and other home goods. The longevity of deadstock and remnant materials varies depending on what type of material it is. 

Upcycling: The Sustainable Solution to Fast Fashion

Upcycling is a major solution to the contributed waste and pollution of the fast fashion industry. It does not require the amount of resources that fast fashion does because it repurposes already-existing materials. This can reduce landfill waste, wastewater from production, greenhouse gasses and more. 

The best part about upcycling is its ability to continue changing to suit the needs of consumers. It is a creative way to take material that has already been used and create something brand new, stylish, and useful. Oftentimes, the quality of the new product is even better than it was before. Upcycling refreshes old materials, such as PVC, without wasting durable material that can be used in a new product. 

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On the Road Again Partners with One Tree Planted

On the Road Again Partners with One Tree Planted

“One for One” Initiative Dedicated To Planting Trees Around The World

On the Road Again has been partnering with One Tree Planted since 2021 that aims to plant 5,000 trees for forest fire recovery. For every item purchased, on our website will plant one tree. 

The objectives of this partnership include:
Supporting reforestation efforts
Empowering consumers with sustainable actions
Raising awareness about the importance of restoration

Planting trees is one of the best ways to combat the damaging effects of climate change. Trees help clean the air we breathe, filter the water we drink, and provide habitat to over 80 percent of the world’s terrestrial biodiversity. Trees also provide tremendous social impacts by providing jobs to over 1.6 billion people, empowering women in underdeveloped nations, and supporting communities devastated by environmental damage.

The partnership is designed to be simple for customers to get involved in global reforestation. For every item sold from On the Road Again inventory, the company will give $1 to One Tree Planted to plant one tree. The trees are planted by local partner organizations and community volunteers in areas where there has been deforestation. To learn more about One Tree Planted Forest Fire Recovery 

About One Tree Planted
One Tree Planted is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit on a mission to make it simple for anyone to help the environment by planting trees. Their projects span the globe and are done in partnership with local communities and knowledgeable experts to create an impact for nature, people, and wildlife. Reforestation helps to rebuild forests after fires and floods, provide jobs for social impact, and restore biodiversity. Many projects have overlapping objectives, creating a combination of benefits that contribute to the UN's Sustainable Development Goals. To learn more, visit One Tree Planted

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Weekend Getaway Falmouth, MA

Weekend Getaway Falmouth, MA

Winter has just begun in New England and with 18" of snow last weekend and more wintery weather forecasted, I had the opportunity to get away! I enjoy getting away in the winter and had recently stayed at AutoCamp Cape Cod with my sister to spend a relaxing weekend and to walk with Libby Delana an avid mindful walker and author of Do Walk. More on her book later.

AutoCamp Cape Cod location is situated close to the shore, just a few minutes from both Falmouth and Woods Hole. The walking/biking trail is directly behind the site which makes it convenient to go for a walk or run. This truly is not Camping, its Glamping at it's finest!

The Airstream units all are equipped Kitchenette with microwave, mini-refrigerator, and dishware. A private patio with grill, firepit and dining area. Needless to say I had to take an opportunity for a photo op with my Dura Placemats in the outside dining area.

Heat and air conditioning, modern spa-inspired bathroom with walk-in shower and vanity sink, Luxe bath amenities by Ursa Major. Luxe towels and robes provided for use.

Queen bed with high-thread-count linens. Modern sofa converts into a comfortable second bed with linens.

  • Sleeps one to three adults, or two adults and two children
  • Soft sofa converts into a comfortable full bed with linens
  • Soft sofa converts into a comfortable full-size bed with linens

My sister arrived about 9 minutes before I did and we were able to check-in their Signature Clubhouse. This is the hub or meeting area for the activities that you can partake in as part of your stay. They have morning yoga, granola and tea/coffee. During the evening live music around the inside fireplace.

I enjoy getting away as long as you have all of your essential gear packed to stay warm. I had reviewed the weather reports and knew it would be cold out for the morning walks. I had brought my snow bibs and others had brought only their leggings and winter jacket. I didn't mind that I would be wearing my ski bibs since I would be warm and would be able to walk for miles. I use my new Insulated Waterproof Ski Bib Overalls and I have to say they kept me very warm. I felt like I could walk from Falmouth to Hyannis! 

I truly enjoyed the Forging Walk that took place on Saturday morning after the early morning walk at 6:00am. I like to sleep in when it's my day off and decided the forging walk at 10:00am would be best for me. I was able to meet and speak with Libby which was the highlight of my weekend and purchase her book. It's a quick ready but very insightful read. Her book Do Walk - Navigate earth, mind and body. Step by Step. It truly has me continuing with my mindful walks. It's been great to follow her on Instagram @parkhere 

I look forward to the opportunity to be able to meet her again and Do Walk! What an inspiration and I encourage you to look into mindful walking as it's not new and it truly makes you look at walking in a difference perspective. I hope you enjoyed my story as I'm not the best of a writer but always look to speak from the heart. 

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10 New England Fall Road Trip Destinations

10 New England Fall Road Trip Destinations
There’s no wrong time or season for a New England road trip through its tiny towns and along its rocky and rugged coast, but the region sure does seem dressed up in its finest colors during the gorgeous foliage season.  So come along on a cool autumn cruise to one of these 10 New England Fall Road Trip Destinations! Continue reading
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