Remake

Why #NoNewClothes?

The purpose of this challenge is to stop and consider the values we want to wear, and the role we can play in addressing overconsumption to change the fashion industry going forward. By taking on the challenge to buy no new clothes — whether that’s buying nothing at all or only secondhand — for 90 days, you will reduce your carbon footprint, limit the waste you send to landfill, and keep your hard-earned money out of the pockets of companies that hurt people and the planet.

collage of nnc challenge-takers showing off their outfits
You Could Save:
Liters of Blue Water
0
KG of CO2e
0
KG of Waste
0
Dollars USD
0
What greater impact does this have?
Woman garment worker
Fashion is a Feminist Issue.

While most fashion execs are men, women make up 80% of the industry’s workforce—and face exploitation at every level, from production and sales to waste management. 93% of garment workers aren’t paid a livable wage and endure unsafe working conditions, including widespread sexual harassment. Consumer insecurities are used to boost sales. Meanwhile, 92 million tons of textiles are discarded yearly, with much ending up in the Global South. To manage the massive waste influx, women in Ghana, for example, are commonly employed as head porters, known as kayayei. These women often endure chronic pain and recurrent injuries from carrying such heavy loads.

Clothing Also Comes at an Enormous Environmental Cost.

Cheap clothes are made with fossil fuel. The only way to make the volume of clothing we make today is with polyester, which is fossil fuel. It takes discarded clothing approximately 200 years to decompose fully. In the meantime, decomposing clothes contain dangerous chemicals, microplastic fibers, and release greenhouse gasses, putting both the planet and the health and well-being of communities near these landfills at risk.

Excess Shopping Can Have Negative Mental Health Effects.

Fashion corporations are tricking you into buying more and more. When fast fashion took off in the late 1990s and early 2000s, fast fashion giants like Zara focused on launching new designs rather than restocking bestsellers to train their customers over time not to think before buying. The truth is, plenty of research suggests that buying more stuff doesn’t make us happier in the long termIn fact, materialism is linked to an increased loneliness and loneliness, in turn, increased materialism.

Take the #NoNewClothes Challenge Today!

When we resist the fashion industry’s tactics to manipulate us into buying more we can band together and have enormous impact. By pressing pause on the purchase of new clothing, reflecting on ways to address overproduction, and holding corporations accountable for their actions, we take the first step in our journey to remake the fashion industry for good. Are you in?

Remake x Perwoll Logos

Remake is Joining Forces with Perwoll to Promote the #NoNewClothes Challenge.

Remake is thrilled to announce our collaboration with Perwoll, a European laundry detergent company, to champion sustainable fashion globally by encouraging everyone to extend the life of their garments and to be more mindful about consumption. Let’s make a difference, one wardrobe at a time.

Challenges Completed:
5840
Together we've saved:
Liters of Blue Water
0
KG of CO2e
0
KG of Waste
0
Dollars USD
0

FAQ

The choice is up to you! Some #NoNewClothes challenge-takers limit themselves to purchasing no apparel, while others only limit their purchasing of “new products.” The rules are yours to set.

The best way to practice sustainability is by shopping your closet before purchasing anything. You may be surprised to discover that only 10-20% of items donated to charity are sold because the quality of most donated items is so poor. Opt to:

    • Borrow
    • Swap
    • Rent
    • Rewear
    • Upcycle
    • Mend

Yes, absolutely! Taking the #NoNewClothes Challenge is a personal journey, meant to help you reset your consumption habits. This action can be taken at any time and for however long! Remake will be here to support you on your path whether you finish  the challenge on your 90th day or take the pledge beyond.

Yes! Some ways that you can support small, sustainable brands during your #NoNewClothes Challenge:

    • Purchasing gift certificates or non-clothing items products from their stores, like household decor.
    • Saving up over the course of the three-month challenge to invest in an item from a sustainable fashion brand that you’ve long wanted.
    • Support an upcycling fashion brand.
    • Support a vintage or secondhand fashion business.
    • Support your local seamstress or tailor by having them work on a piece you already own.
    • You could also decide if your challenge allows space for purchasing from sustainable brands as gifts for friends.
    • You can get your intimates, swimwear and socks at these shops.

The #NoNewClothes Challenge does not have to equate to “no shopping” – it is what you make it. The hope is that by refraining from purchasing new clothes over the next three months, you’ll become more aware of your consumption and waste habits, and learn how to better assess and challenge them.

It’s really important to rewear event wear (Jane Fonda does it)! Consumers spend billions of dollars each year on “wear-once” event wear for weddings, vacations, and special occasions. Much of this clothing ends up in landfills after one wear. There might be an urge to splash out for a special event outfit now that the world is opening back up, but you don’t have to buy new to look nice!

Instead, rewear what you have, choose secondhand first, or rent something special for your event.

We get asked this question a lot, and our VP of Advocacy and Community Engagement penned an article about this topic. In short: we encourage everyone to consciously choose secondhand first. However, it’s possible to over-consume secondhand as well–that’s why this challenge helps you unlearn consumption habits. There’s currently enough clothing on the planet to dress the next 6 generations.

We get asked this question a lot, which is why we penned an entire op-ed on the matter!

In short:

Fast fashion exploits and engulfs generations of women into a cycle of poverty. On every Remake journey to production hubs, the women we meet tell us that they are sacrificing their own wellbeing to keep their children in school and secure a better life for their families. Yet, she is making barely enough to pay rent and put food on the table. Remake was once told a story of one woman that haunts us to this day. Her garment job paid her so little, that when she had a tooth ache, she had to take out a predatory loan and take up sex work on the side to pay the loan back. Should our dollars be supporting these types of jobs?

Garment jobs are neither good nor safe. So the argument that at least fast fashion creates jobs is not good enough. Deaths and injuries are commonplace in our industry — from the infamous Rana Plaza factory collapse to the lesser known but constant truck accidents which injure, kill, and hurt garment makers on their way to work.

“In a best case scenario, robots take on board the most repetitive, mundane, and non-cognitive tasks of apparel manufacturing,” Jae-Hee Chang, the author of the ILO report, says in The Guardian. “Robots would also assume more of the dangerous and dirty tasks, like mixing of chemicals, which can be hazardous to human workers. Ultimately, human workers would be able to perform more satisfying and rewarding, as well as higher-paid, jobs in the sector like programming robots for better production and design.”

Consumption

The latest data from the American Apparel and Footwear Association notes that in 2022, the average American spent a record-breaking high $1,143.29 for 68.5 pieces of clothing. This equates to 17 items and $286 per person in a three-month period.

Waste

Using the most recent apparel waste data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and corresponding population figures from the U.S. Census Bureau, we are able to estimate that Americans throw out 36kg of clothing per person per year. Presuming that every #NoNewClothes pledge taker is re-wearing and caring for the clothes they already have in their closets, instead of trashing them to make space for something new, this corresponds to 9kg of apparel waste prevented per person over a three-month period.

Climate Impacts

Textile Exchange’s most recent Materials Market Report (2023) breaks down both what percentage of global fiber production each fiber type makes up and what percentage of each fiber was produced for/ used in apparel, specifically, in 2022. Using this data, Remake was able to estimate that of the 17 items the average American purchased in a three-month period in 2022, 10 items are likely to have been made from polyester, five items from cotton, and two from viscose. 

Using a ‘bundle’ of clothing items comprising one pair of trousers, one dress, one skirt, one shirt and one t-shirt, we used shipping weight approximations to estimate the average weight of each of the 17 pieces of clothing. Then, using industry Life Cycle Assessment data approximations for both blue water and greenhouse gas emissions per kilogram of cotton, polyester, and viscose, we calculated the water and emissions savings associated with completing the #NoNewClothes Challenge.

Want to do more?

Donate_Icon_Color

Donate

For every $1 donated we recovered $4K in stolen wages. With $500 we prevent 1 TON of CO2 emissions.

Action_Icon_Color

5-Minute Actions

Help hold brands accountable to people and the planet with these simple online actions.