Fact Fashion: What Happens to the Clothes You Return?


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The rise of online clothes shopping has also led to the rise of the return. What actually happens to the items we send back? In the last year, 51% of British shoppers sent back items they purchased online - but these goods don’t always end up back on the shelves. Jelena Sofronijevic talks to Dana Thomas, European Sustainability Editor at British Vogue, host of The Green Dream with Dana Thomas, and author of Fashionopolis, and Dr Mark Sumner, Lecturer in Sustainable Fashion at the University of Leeds.

  • “Fast fashion is like fast food. We consume it quickly, then we're hungry for more.” - Dana Thomas
  • “Most brands work hard to get clothes refurbished and back on sale.” - Mark Sumner
  • “Just because it's more expensive, doesn't mean it's more sustainable.” - Mark Sumner
  • “I'm an advocate of fast fashion - which might seem perverse, as a sustainability lecturer.” - Mark Sumner
  • “There is a whole generation of fashion brands that are strictly online.” – Dana Thomas
  • “Luxury brands will try and retain exclusivity by burning stock, by throwing stock away, ensuring nobody can use those returns.” – Mark Sumner

For more, listen to The Bunker Daily: Wild Wild Waste — How the West litters the world with Ruth Michaelson.


Presented and produced by Jelena Sofronijevic. Music by Kenny Dickinson. Audio production by Jade Bailey. Lead Producer: Jacob Jarvis. Group Editor: Andrew Harrison. THE BUNKER is a Podmasters Production


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