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Video of 'unwashable' Gucci garment draws ire about disposable fashion: 'What a grift'

"So … how do you clean it?"

"So… how do you clean it?"

Photo Credit: YouTube

Fast fashion is already a wasteful industry, encouraging shoppers to buy endless amounts of cheaply made clothing that breaks down quickly so they'll be forced to buy more. But one company seems to be taking it to an extreme with what some are calling "disposable clothing." A recent Reddit post held a disturbing example.

What happened?

The post appeared on r/Anticonsumption, where users are against wasting money and damaging the environment with unnecessary purchases. "Gucci encourages disposable clothing practices by making a $1,825 skirt with bleeding leather dye unwashable," claimed the original poster.

They credited The Clean Club on YouTube for the attached photos, which show close-ups of a garment with Gucci's signature print in red on white. Red dye does seem to be bleeding through near a seam — and the tag says both "do not wash" and "do not dry clean."

"So … how do you clean it?" asked a confused commenter.

"According to the person who posted the video I got these shots from, the only way to clean the skirt is to pay for a very expensive service where they take the skirt apart, clean it that way, and then put it back together," replied the original poster.

"What a grift," said another Redditor.

Why do the washing instructions for a skirt matter?

As the original poster pointed out in another comment, "I'd imagine over time the process would damage the fabric." There are only so many times an owner can take this skirt apart to clean it, shortening its life and driving up the cost of an already expensive item.

"So… how do you clean it?"
Photo Credit: Reddit

Not only is that bad for the owner's wallet, but it's also bad for the planet. Clothing that can only be worn a few times will be thrown out sooner. That means more materials and energy going into making clothing and more discarded clothing being dumped in landfills. It's everything wrong with fast fashion turned up to 11.

What is Gucci doing to fix the problem?

In February 2023, Gucci announced a new "Circular Hub" where it would work on the problem of making its products repairable, long-lasting, and recyclable, as well as using more eco-friendly materials. The company hoped to be an industry leader in this field.

This skirt in question isn't from the current season's lineup, and it's not clear how old it is, so it may predate these efforts.

What can I do to avoid sending clothes to the landfill?

Most people aren't buying unwashable skirts for thousands of dollars to begin with, but there's more you can do to avoid fast fashion. Support brands that deliver a few quality products instead of an endless parade of cheap styles.

Also, you can learn to repair your own clothing, and when it reaches the end of its life, look for a recycling program to take it instead of throwing it away.

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