We delve into the drawbacks of fast fashion while highlighting the benefits of mindful wardrobe choices on this Skeptical Sunday with Michael Regilio!
On This Week’s Skeptical Sunday:
- Even under normal circumstances, the fashion industry is a major contributor to carbon emissions, water pollution, and waste, with clothes often ending up in landfills.
- What is so-called “fast fashion,” and how does it create a constant cycle of trends and clothing turnover, leading to excessive waste and environmental damage?
- Donating clothes is not always a sustainable solution, as many donated items end up in landfills or have a negative impact on local textile industries in developing countries.
- The fashion industry relies on cheap labor and often exploits workers — particularly women — in factories with poor working conditions and low wages.
- How do we help tip the scale in a more sustainable direction? We can support eco-conscious designers, clothing recycling, and rental services while buying quality items and reducing washing loads.
- Connect with Jordan on Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. If you have something you’d like us to tackle here on Skeptical Sunday, drop Jordan a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and let him know!
- Connect with Michael at his website, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube, and make sure to check out the Michael Regilio Plagues Well With Others podcast here or wherever you enjoy listening to fine podcasts!
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Resources from This Episode:
- The UN Alliance for Sustainable Fashion
- Why Fast Fashion Fails Us | Maximum Fun Episode 22
- What Is Fast Fashion and Why Is It a Problem? | Ethical Consumer
- Understanding the 5 Stages of the Fashion Cycle | MasterClass
- Fashion Redefined | Conscious Learning Tribe
- Fast Fashion Explained and How It Impacts Retail Manufacturing | Investopedia
- What Is Fast Fashion and Why Is It So Bad? | Good On You
- How the Fashion Industry Has Changed Over the Years | Fashion Edits
- How Fast Fashion Hurts the Planet Through Pollution and Waste | Business Insider
- Fashion’s Tiny Hidden Secret | UNEP
- 10 Concerning Fast Fashion Waste Statistics | Earth.Org
- The Hidden Trade in Our Second-Hand Clothes Given to Charity | The Guardian
- Fast Fashion: Turning a Blind Eye | Adamah Media
- Americans Throw Away Too Many Clothes. Poorer Countries Are Left with the Waste. | Vox
- Out of the Closet Thrift Stores
- Fast Fashion Pollution and Climate Change | Earth.Org
- The Real Environmental Impact of the Fashion Industry | Bloomberg
- The 10 Essential Fast Fashion Statistics | Earth.Org
- Is Fashion Bad for the Environment? | World Economic Forum
- Are My Denim Jeans Bad for the Environment? | NRDC
- An Environmental Disaster in Uzbekistan Is Now a Tourist Attraction. What Can It Teach Us? | The Washington Post
- Ocean Plastic Pollution: Why Our Clothes Are Part of the Problem | Vox
- Invisible Plastic Particles from Textiles and Tires: A Major Source of Ocean Pollution | IUCN
- Fashion’s Tiny Hidden Secret | UNEP
- Gender-Based Violence in the Asian H&M and Gap Garment Supply Chains: Two Reports to the International Labor Organization | Global Labor Justice
- The High Price of Fast Fashion | WSJ
- Fast Fashion, Fair Wage: What Vietnam Can Teach Bangladesh | The Journal
- Why Fast Fashion Fails Us | Adam Ruins Everything
- Stretch: The High-Fructose Corn Syrup of Menswear | George Hahn
- The Democratization of Fashion: A Brief History | Time
- Letter from Gen Z: TikTok Has a Fast Fashion Problem | The Drum
- The True Meaning of ‘Made In’ Labels | Atelier de Griff
- Where Does Your T-Shirt Come From? Follow Its Epic Global Journey | KQED
- 5 Truths the Fast Fashion Industry Doesn’t Want You to Know | HuffPost Life
- A More Sustainable Supply Chain | HBR
- Ecoalf Introduces New No-Fuss Ocean Waste Footwear Collection Made of Plastic and Algae | FashNerd
- These Sneakers Are Made Out of Recycled Gum | World Economic Forum
- Gum-Tec Gumshoe | Gumdrop Ltd.
- What We’re Doing About Our Plastic Problem | Patagonia Stories
- 24 Deadstock and Zero Waste Clothing Brands | My Green Closet
- Fashion Retailers Adopting Unique Initiatives to Reduce Eco-Impact | Fashionating World
- 7 Influential Celebrities Leading the Way Towards a More Sustainable Fashion Future | The Good Trade
- How We Make Jeans with Less Water | Levi’s
- A New Movement to Reduce the Hidden Environmental Cost of Clothing Care | Vogue Business
- Why Successful People Wear the Same Thing Every Day by Vincent Carlos, The Startup | Medium
858: Fast Fashion | Skeptical Sunday
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Special thanks to Airbnb for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:04] Maybe you've stayed at an Airbnb before and thought to yourself, "Yeah, this actually seems pretty doable. Maybe my place could be an Airbnb." It could be as simple as starting with a spare room or your whole place while you're away. Find out how much your place is worth at airbnb.com/host.
[00:00:18] Coming up next on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:21] Michael Regilio: Transparency is not only lacking in the production of our clothes but in the disposal too. The clothes that go to poor countries aren't actually helping. They're hurting. Most donated clothes go to Africa. A 2021 Vox article shows that as overproduced clothes flood into poor communities, not only are they stuck with the waste, Africans are deterred from ever starting a textile industry of their own. Plus, a seamstress or tailor in these communities cannot make a living because no one can compete with the low cost of wearing the West's hand-me-downs.
[00:00:57] Jordan Harbinger: Welcome to the show. I'm Jordan Harbinger, and this is Skeptical Sunday, a special edition of The Jordan Harbinger Show where a rotating guest co-host and I break down a topic you may have never thought about. Open things up like I wish I could do with my freaking nose right now. And we debunk common misconceptions. I apologize. Whenever I'm doing the show with the stuffy nose, I feel like it just annoys everyone who's listening, but c'est la vie, the show must go on. These topics include why the Olympics are kind of a sham, why expiration dates are nonsense, why tipping makes no sense, fast fashion, recycling banned foods, toothpaste, chemtrails, and a whole lot more. Fast fashion, we're doing that one today.
[00:01:30] Normally, on The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most fascinating people and turn their wisdom into practical advice that you can use to impact your own life and those around you. We have long-form interviews and conversations with a variety of amazing folks, from spies to CEOs, athletes, authors, thinkers, and performers.
[00:01:50] If you're new to the show or you want to tell your friends about the show, I suggest our episode starter packs. These are collections of our favorite episodes organized by topic. That'll help new listeners get a taste of everything that we do here on this show. Topics like persuasion, influence, negotiation, communication, China, North Korea, scams, conspiracy, debunks, crime, and cults, and more. Just visit jordanharbinger.com/start, or take a look in your Spotify app to get started.
[00:02:16] By the way, if you use the Stitcher app to listen to the show, they are getting rid of that app August 29th. It will no longer be useful, so switch to a different app if you use the Stitcher app to listen to this podcast. If you're on Android, I suggest Podcast Addict. Uh, it might not be as pretty, but it works really well. If you're on iOS, Apple, you should use Overcast, in my humble opinion, or Apple Podcasts, but definitely no longer Stitcher. It will not update anymore in the next couple of months. So if you're using the Stitcher app, now is a good time to switch to a new podcast app. And if you have any problems with this, you're kind of Boomer in terms of your tech, you don't know what to do, you can always email me email@example.com. I will try to point you in the right direction, but the Stitcher app will no longer work for this show.
[00:02:59] Today, shopping for clothes ain't like it used to be. We can purchase a new wardrobe with the trendiest styles every single freaking week. Every time we go to T.J. Maxx, H&M, the Gap are somewhere similar, there are new styles hitting the shelves. We can buy anything we need for our wardrobe online and have it delivered within 24 hours. It's all easy. It's so, so cheap. This is in the most literal sense, fast fashion. Today, comedian Michael Regilio joins us in talking about the high price of cheap clothes.
[00:03:28] Michael Regilio: Hi, Jordan. What are you wearing and how long have you owned it?
[00:03:32] Jordan Harbinger: Well, that escalated quickly. I am wearing a — do you want the brands? Is that what we're doing?
[00:03:39] Michael Regilio: Yeah, sure.
[00:03:39] Jordan Harbinger: Sure. I mean, I'm wearing a button-down from a brand called All Saints and a pair of pants from KETL, which is my friend's company. It's like mountain wear for guys who mountain bike everywhere, which is not me at all, but I love these pants. What about you, Michael? What are you wearing?
[00:03:54] Michael Regilio: Well, I'm wearing some Gap jeans and a sweater my wife purchased online.
[00:03:59] Jordan Harbinger: How dare you.
[00:03:59] Michael Regilio: I'm probably guilty. I'm probably guilty. The average person is likely wearing something they purchased within the last month. And in another month, that purchase will be in a landfill. But it hasn't always been like these clothes used to last.
[00:04:13] Jordan Harbinger: It's the old, "They don't make them like they used to," except for real. And not just making me sound old whenever I say it, hopefully.
[00:04:20] Michael Regilio: Yeah. In the fashion world, that's really true. The features that drive this 2.4 trillion fashion industry are cheap manufacturing prices, making clothes that follow current trends in the quickest ways possible, and using low grade disposable materials meant for just a few wears, so consumers keep coming back to the stores for more.
[00:04:42] Jordan Harbinger: This was shocking for me. So are you suggesting that we are buying clothes intended to be thrown away?
[00:04:49] Michael Regilio: Mm-hmm. I'm not suggesting it's a fact. According to the University of Georgia textile professor Laura McAndrews, clothes designers create clothes to be disposable. The fibers, yarns, and fabrics used are inferior quality. Cheap machinery makes the clothes and low-skilled laborers do not construct the items well. This is all on purpose. They design clothes for the trends of the season. But the crazy thing is fashion seasons are moving faster and faster every year.
[00:05:19] Jordan Harbinger: So fast fashion is not just a clever name. I actually had no idea. Okay. It's really fast. That's part of the spiel. I thought it was a cool, clever alliteration from a news agency. I didn't realize it was real.
[00:05:30] Michael Regilio: No, the industry counts on the fast part, but this is a recent phenomenon. In just a few years, the fashion industry has become unrecognizable to what it was just a few decades ago. The entire process is sped up exponentially. As the ever-changing unlimited choices of style offered to the consumer increase, the number of times a piece of clothing is wore before it's ready for the trash decreases.
[00:05:53] Jordan Harbinger: I do feel like I wear stuff forever. This shirt is not new. These pants are not new. But then again, I'm also in dad mode. I am much less concerned about being cool these days, probably because it's kind of impossible. I also own tons of leather jackets, which are kind of useless. They never get worn. I live in California. It's never cold enough and I never leave the house. So while both my fashion sense and my judgment are indeed in question, my levels of consumption are relatively stable, at least when it comes to clothing and fashion if you can even call my clothes fashion.
[00:06:25] Michael Regilio: Yeah. Well, fast fashion comes, and by the way, I can see you in this link. And your clothes would not be considered fashion, nor were mine.
[00:06:33] Jordan Harbinger: No.
[00:06:33] Michael Regilio: We're not—
[00:06:34] Jordan Harbinger: That's not a, it's not a thing. This is like Dr. Evil's chic. This is basically a flannel without a pattern on it. There's nothing there.
[00:06:40] Michael Regilio: Yeah. It actually looks like a shirt I wear all the time. I think we have similar styles, but I mean, the fact of the matter is like when you're younger, dressing trendy makes you look cooler and cooler, and then the older you get, the more trendy you dress, the less cool you look like. There's—
[00:06:53] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:06:53] Michael Regilio: —a tipping point. I think for guys where it's like, just go with what looked cool when you were 25 years old and stick with it for life.
[00:07:00] Jordan Harbinger: You're talking about John Varvatos right now. You ever go there? And the guys who are regular customers there, some guys pull it off. A lot of guys, they don't. And look, I love the brand. They make great stuff, but there's guys in there where you go, "Man, it looks like you're trying a real hard to blend in with the 23-year-old that you're dating, even though you're 70.
[00:07:20] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:07:20] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:07:21] Michael Regilio: Exactly. It smacks of effort, and that's never a good look.
[00:07:24] Jordan Harbinger: Never.
[00:07:24] Michael Regilio: Fast fashion came from the 1980s concept of quick response, which is the time styles take to move from the runway to the store. The timeline used to revolve around the four seasons. I don't mean the suits, the pop group.
[00:07:39] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, okay.
[00:07:39] Michael Regilio: I meant—
[00:07:39] Jordan Harbinger: Nobody gets that joke. Nobody gets that joke, Michael.
[00:07:43] Michael Regilio: Hey, I'm a music nerd. I know the Four Seasons. Somebody's out there right now going, "I get your joke."
[00:07:47] Jordan Harbinger: A 73-year-old woman is laughing to herself right now at our humor. Yes.
[00:07:51] Michael Regilio: I mean, certain events that correlated like back-to-school fashion in the fall, New Year's Eve styles in the winter, springtime prom outfits, and summer sold us our vacation wear. The fashion cycle is how a particular design or color or whatever comes into popularity and then is phased out.
[00:08:07] Jordan Harbinger: It seems like now designs colors and trends, they phase out way more often. I mean, when I was younger, it was like Gap jeans are in, and they were in for the whole year or most of the whole year. Now, I don't even try. And my wife, we don't even try. We can't because you need to be trendy all the time. And if you're looking on Instagram or you're getting targeted ads, you see these things change constantly. It's wild to me. It seems impossible to keep up.
[00:08:33] Michael Regilio: Right. And that's because it's good for business. The fashion industry is trained consumers to want to be hip, stylish, and up to the latest trends. So they come to their stores more. We are all just trained pets to the clothing retailers, and we come running whenever they ring the bell.
[00:08:48] Jordan Harbinger: And if our clothes are out of style the day after we buy them, the bell is just always ringing.
[00:08:53] Michael Regilio: Yes. It's like what they call planned obsolescence with that electronics.
[00:08:57] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:08:57] Michael Regilio: Same goes for fashion but with style. There were the traditional four fashion cycles a year, and designers used to put out four collections a year. The Conscious Learning Tribe states that now it's more like 12 to 16 times for companies like H&M while Zara pumps out 24 collections a year.
[00:09:17] Jordan Harbinger: Wait, wait, wait. That's every two weeks.
[00:09:19] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:09:19] Jordan Harbinger: There's a new fashion collection out? That's ridiculous.
[00:09:22] Michael Regilio: That's exactly right.
[00:09:23] Jordan Harbinger: So you can go buy the whole store, and then two weeks later, there's just new stuff in there.
[00:09:27] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:09:27] Jordan Harbinger: That's bananas.
[00:09:28] Michael Regilio: In fact, in according to Investopedia, retailers often introduce new product lines multiple times a week just to keep up with the latest trends.
[00:09:37] Jordan Harbinger: That's obscene.
[00:09:38] Michael Regilio: It is. And a person trying to stay fashionable is buying and getting rid of incredible amounts of clothes, and the consequences are detrimental to the planet.
[00:09:46] Jordan Harbinger: And we're always shopping. And look, I get it. I've used the Internet. Obviously, this is where I exist online, right? I'm running an online business. I see several ads for clothes on my phone every day that I can wear tomorrow. It's like delivery by 8:00 a.m. if you order right now. Everyone is a few clicks away from a new outfit, and I've actually checked reviews for some of these clothes because they look great in the ads. I'm like, damn, that's badass. I'll look like Wolverine. I look like Hugh Jackman in this thing. And then, you look it up and it's like, "This isn't real leather. It smells funny. I washed it once and it fell apart. Looks nothing like the photos." Just all kinds of complaints about how they look in real life versus online.
[00:10:22] Michael Regilio: Right. And what you're describing is a service that used to be for the richest people, by the way, getting clothing delivered to your home so you can send back what you don't like. So obviously, something has changed about how and why we shop for clothes. And the clothes themselves used to be really different.
[00:10:39] Jordan Harbinger: Like shoulder pads and skinny jeans, of course. But you know what? You're right. I hadn't thought about this. OG sponsors of shows that I run, like my previous show, we're talking seven to 10 years ago now. It would be like, "Something box. We send you a bunch of stuff that's your style, and then you keep what you want, and you put the rest back in the box, and you mail it back, and the shipping's included." I don't even think those exist anymore because you don't need them. You just go online and buy stuff. There's probably still online stylists and all that, but basically, that's everyone. Now, we return everything.
[00:11:10] Michael Regilio: That's exactly right. It used to be that the problems with styles don't last, but now it's the clothes don't last either. Wardrobes used to include a few items made in the home for materials bought or farmed. That's true.
[00:11:21] Jordan Harbinger: Hmm.
[00:11:22] Michael Regilio: These items were durable, hid dirt, and were mended if needed, not thrown away. Wealthier households could hire a seamstress, but clothes were a time-consuming expense for everyone. People didn't have enormous closet stuffed with clothing. They had a few dependable outfits that lasted a lifetime. The Industrial Revolution created mass-produced clothing, but it was still expensive, so fashion was slow. By the 1990s, the fashion industry was getting clothes from the design stage to the store shelves in just two weeks. In 2021, fashionedits.com reported that in the 1970s, the average household invested 10 percent of its income, about $4,000, on 25 pieces of clothing each year. Today, the average household spends 3.5 percent of its income, about $1,700, on 70 pieces of clothing a year.
[00:12:15] Jordan Harbinger: What? Okay, wait. So for people who are like, wait, I was only half listening because I get it. So people used to spend 10 percent of our income, which by the way, is a ton.
[00:12:24] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:12:24] Jordan Harbinger: On 25 pieces of clothing a year, which to me still sounds like a hell of a lot. But then again, I've got a closet full of the same crap that I got for free from show sponsors. So maybe I'm not a good example, but now we're spending less money on clothes, but we're getting three times as much. We're spending one-third of the amount, but we're getting three times as many pieces of clothing, which can really only mean that clothing has gotten a lot cheaper, largely because the clothing now is crap.
[00:12:50] Michael Regilio: We used to be great, but it was worth it. The clothes lasted. I still have my dad's army jacket that was made in the '50s. Like we said earlier, they don't make them like they used to. I've worn it for years. Still looks great.
[00:13:02] Jordan Harbinger: I'm also guessing vintage stores in the future are not going to be filled with clothing from the 2020s because it will have disintegrated by next year.
[00:13:10] Michael Regilio: Exactly.
[00:13:10] Jordan Harbinger: At the latest.
[00:13:10] Michael Regilio: The only thing that's going to be filled with clothes from the 2020s will be the garbage dumps, which is where most of our out-of-style clothes end up. Business Insider reports 85 percent of all the clothes being pumped out of the factories and into stores ends up in a landfill.
[00:13:27] Jordan Harbinger: Oof.
[00:13:28] Michael Regilio: The UN equates it to a garbage truck full of clothes emptying into a landfill every second of every day.
[00:13:34] Jordan Harbinger: That's gross.
[00:13:36] Michael Regilio: Yeah. Every second, we discard 92 million tons of clothes-related waste each year.
[00:13:42] Jordan Harbinger: That's a very difficult number even to comprehend. I can't really wrap my head around any of that.
[00:13:48] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:13:48] Jordan Harbinger: This is why Americans, we won't use the metric system, but I'm like, well, how? 92 million tons? How many Airbus jetliners is that full? You know? Like I need a comparison where I look at it and I go, wow, that's a lot because otherwise, it's just this crazy huge ass number.
[00:14:02] Michael Regilio: And we're going to be hitting a lot of crazy, huge ass numbers in this episode. I mean, we are watching it add up before us. Sales racks don't exist because retailers want to pass on savings. They're just a holding area for items that haven't sold to sit before they get thrown into a landfill.
[00:14:17] Jordan Harbinger: I'm going to stop you right here. I don't throw my clothes away, and I don't even think I know anybody who throws clothing away. That seems weird. Don't you donate clothes?
[00:14:25] Michael Regilio: Yeah. Many times. You're just cutting out the middleman. A lot of donations to Goodwill or Salvation Army that don't end up in a landfill get dumped into developing countries.
[00:14:35] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, so ho hold on. First of all, I didn't know they threw stuff away. I guess they have to, if it's like covered in shampoo or whatever, fine. But is it not a good thing that I donate something and it goes to Africa? I mean, I don't want it anymore. So now a kid in rural Senegal gets some sweet R. Kelly, Bill Cosby t-shirts. How is that not win-win?
[00:14:53] Michael Regilio: So we think transparency is not only lacking in the production of our clothes but in the disposal too. The clothes that go to poor countries aren't actually helping. They're hurting. Most donated clothes go to Africa. A 2021 Vox article shows that as overproduced clothes flood into poor communities, not only are they stuck with the waste, Africans are deterred from ever starting a textile industry of their own. Plus, a seamstress or tailor in these communities cannot make a living because no one can compete with the low cost of wearing the West's hand-me-downs.
[00:15:26] Jordan Harbinger: So that's upsetting. I did not think about that, which is anno stupid because econ 101 and all that, but we think we're all doing a great service by donating, but essentially we're just putting local industry out of business because they can't compete with free.
[00:15:39] Michael Regilio: Yeah, I know. It's a bummer that the orphans aren't being clothed by our Marie Kondo purge, but there is no research that the needy are getting donations. The Guardian exposed that most of the donations that make it to poor communities end up in a landfill eventually. Each piece of clothing in a dump is money in a corporation's pocket.
[00:15:59] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, so what the heck are we supposed to do with our old clothes then? Throwing them in the garbage seems terrible, somehow.
[00:16:05] Michael Regilio: And it is, but there are there — okay, so there are some things. There are donation places that serve only their community. We have to seek them out. Here in LA we have a great chain called Out of the Closet. They never send clothing overseas and sell unwanted donations to textile recycling plants. They do a lot for the community with their proceeds, but Goodwill and Red Cross. Those are the inventories that get shipped around the world.
[00:16:27] Jordan Harbinger: No good deed. Wow. So besides populating landfills, what are the other environmental effects?
[00:16:33] Michael Regilio: Reports from Bloomberg, earth.org, and many others showed that the fashion industry emits more carbon than the shipping and international aviation industries combined, producing 10 percent of all carbon emissions, emitting over 1.2 billion tons of carbon dioxide per year. If the fashion sector continues on its current trajectory, those emissions will reach over 20 percent by 2050, according to a 2017 report from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. Not good.
[00:17:04] Jordan Harbinger: So it's a runaway runway train. Anyone?
[00:17:08] Michael Regilio: And we are doing this by choice. A terrifying fact is that returns of items bought online exceed the amount of all purchased goods. The system is set up to run on waste.
[00:17:21] Jordan Harbinger: Let me think about that for a second. So the returns of items bought online exceed the amount of all purchased goods. So we're not even wearing the clothes they're selling us. We're just staring at them disappointed for a second after we take them out of the box, putting them right back in the box and shipping them back to the warehouse.
[00:17:37] Michael Regilio: Basically, yeah. If we stopped shopping for just a year, we do more for the environment than you or I can even quantify. I'm not saying we should walk around in burlap sacks. But I don't remember ever thinking that people looked out of style 25 years ago. This is humans acting like Pavlovian dogs salivating at new trends. Not because we need them, but because we're being told we need them by — surprise, surprise — the people who make money off of us wanting them.
[00:18:09] Jordan Harbinger: We got to take a little break, and I am just really praying that there is not a clothing ad in the ad slot for this episode. We'll be right back.
[00:18:17] This episode is sponsored in part by Airbnb. So we used to travel a lot for podcast interviews and conferences, and we love staying in Airbnbs because we often meet interesting people. And the stays are just more unique and fun. One of our favorite places to stay at in LA is with a sweet older couple whose kids had moved out. They have a granny flat in their backyard. We used to stay there all the time. We were regulars, always booking their Airbnb when we flew down for interviews. And we loved it because they'd leave a basket of snacks, sometimes a bottle of wine, even a little note for us. And they would leave us freshly baked banana bread because they knew that I liked it. And they even became listeners of this podcast, which is how they knew about the banana bread. So after our house was built, we decided to become hosts ourselves, turning one of our spare bedrooms into an Airbnb. Maybe you've stayed in an Airbnb before and thought to yourself, "Hey, this seems pretty doable. Maybe my place could be an Airbnb." It could be as simple as starting with a spare room or your whole place while you're away. You could be sitting on an Airbnb and not even know it. Perhaps you get a fantastic vacation plan for the balmy days of summer. As you're out there soaking up the sun and making memories, your house doesn't need to sit idle, turn it into an Airbnb. Let it be a vacation home for somebody else. And picture this, your little one isn't so little anymore. They're headed off to college this fall. The echo in their now empty bedroom might be a little too much to bear. So whether you could use a little extra money to cover some bills or something a little more fun, your home might be worth more than you think. Find out how much at airbnb.com/host.
[00:19:40] Thank you for listening and supporting the show. Your support of our advertisers keeps us going. All of the deals and discount codes ways to support the show are on the deals page, jordanharbinger.com/deals. You can also search for any sponsor using the search box on the website as well. Please consider supporting those who support the show.
[00:19:58] Now, back to Skeptical Sunday.
[00:20:01] In truth, there are a few classic looks that kind of last through the decades, right? Jeans and a t-shirt, a good suit, a nice black dress, some variation of those. The irony is though trendy clothes are the ones that we look back on and frankly can't believe we wore in public. All the trendy stuff that I've ever had where I'm like, This is awesome. I got to wear this on a special occasion." I save it and two or three years later, I go, "I'm never wearing this. This thing is ridiculous looking. I'm absolutely never wearing this thing." It's usually like a super nice jacket. And then, I go back to the motorcycle jacket that was designed in 1945.
[00:20:33] Michael Regilio: Exactly. So in a way, we're hurting the earth so our kids can laugh at our old posts. That is, when they're not yelling—
[00:20:40] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:20:40] Michael Regilio: —at us for destroying the planet and using all the water, which gets me to my next point. Water, the fashion industry is the second largest consumer of water worldwide. Watson & Wolfe, a sustainable clothing company, breaks it down like this. It takes 700 gallons of water to produce one cotton shirt, and it takes 2000 gallons of water to produce one pair of jeans. That's enough water for someone to drink eight cups a day for 10 years.
[00:21:09] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. Talk about wet in your pants. I assume this is to grow the cotton, make it into jeans, ship it, whatever, the whole process, right?
[00:21:19] Michael Regilio: Yes. The National Resource Defense Council points out this is because genes are made from cotton, which is a very water-intensive plant, and as some of us know, water is a limited resource. And The Washington Post has a great article detailing that Uzbekistan was home of the world's fourth-largest lake, the Aral Sea. Unsustainable cotton farming started in the 1960s and sucked the lake dry in just 50 years with no chance of bringing it back. Sucked dry to keep hipsters in blue jeans.
[00:21:49] Jordan Harbinger: Well, these would be Soviet hipsters, I assume at that point in time. No? So they dried up that lake by digging fake rivers out of it to go to cotton farms, and they can't bring those back, can't they? Just un-dam or re-dam, whatever water source they dammed up or didn't dam up to make the lake. I don't understand.
[00:22:05] Michael Regilio: Well, for one, the notion of Soviet hipsters actually sounds hip to me.
[00:22:10] Jordan Harbinger: It does. It's coming back, for sure.
[00:22:12] Michael Regilio: It's definitely coming back.
[00:22:12] Jordan Harbinger: If I'm going to be a hipster, I'm going to be a Soviet-looking hipster. Not because we like communism. I know everyone's always like, you guys are commies.
[00:22:18] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:22:19] Jordan Harbinger: It's quite the opposite. Isn't it sort of like chic to dress like a Soviet when you're a capitalist? That Should be a thing.
[00:22:24] Michael Regilio: They're charging American dollars for those Che Guevara t-shirts. So obviously—
[00:22:30] Jordan Harbinger: Facts.
[00:22:31] Michael Regilio: I have a Soviet-era military army belt that is so freaking cool. This is so off the rails, but the coolest thing about Soviet-era hipsters is how they would trade forbidden records, rock and roll records. Do you know anything about this?
[00:22:45] Jordan Harbinger: I sort of do. When I lived in East Germany, I remember my host father, he is a musician, and he was like, "Man, it was so hard to get music." We had to drive to Berlin and then you'd find some sketchy guy who had a record store, or not even a record store, but like a store that maybe sold something and you just knew that was the guy who was somehow getting smuggled records in from West Berlin so you could get Pink Floyd or whatever. And they were freaking expensive as hell.
[00:23:11] Michael Regilio: Oh yeah. But even cooler was the bootleg records. In order to bootleg them, they would print records on old x-rays because somehow that it's the same material and it could work. So you can get an old Soviet Pink Floyd record on an x-ray of a dude's broken hand. They're the coolest-looking thing you've ever seen.
[00:23:30] Jordan Harbinger: That's really cool. That is cool.
[00:23:32] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:23:32] Jordan Harbinger: That is cool. I'd like to think that back in the day. I would've been a smuggler who smuggles things into the Eastern Bloc because they probably back then wouldn't just execute you or do something, or like now the ISIS curtain or something, you don't really want to screw with that. But back then, it was like, "Okay, don't go bring in your records in here unless you're going to give me a bribe," which I would. You know, I'd be down for that but anyway—
[00:23:50] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:23:51] Jordan Harbinger: —we're way off-topic now.
[00:23:52] Michael Regilio: We are.
[00:23:52] Jordan Harbinger: I do like the idea of x-ray Pink Floyd.
[00:23:55] Michael Regilio: Yeah. I'll send you a picture of some of the old x-ray records you could get in the Soviet Union.
[00:24:00] So, okay, back to the lake. And you're asking about the destruction of it, the initial desiccation of the sea, look, you can't just re-lake the lake. This is over by pay grade. But the short answer is you can't put the toothpaste back in the tubes. Salinity levels are changed, evaporation rates are changed, and the agriculture in the areas changed that, or is different than it was pre-cotton. The fix here is not a quick one. So forget damming the lake. Damn, the humans who chose blue jeans over blue waters. They're blue jeans for a reason. By the way, our clothes have more dye in them than Tom Cruise's hair, which gets me to our next point — pollution.
[00:24:38] Jordan Harbinger: I saw Top Gun Maverick, the fashion industry, they can't be using that much dye.
[00:24:44] Michael Regilio: A lot of water is used to dye the clothes. The World Economic Forum says the dying process uses enough water to fill two million Olympic-sized swimming pools each year. So there's your little analogy that maybe you can wrap your head around. And that's not the worst part. The dye water travels and ends up contaminating the oceans and lakes. 20 percent of global wastewater comes from textile dyeing. Textile dyeing is the second largest contributor to global water pollution.
[00:25:12] Jordan Harbinger: So the fashion industry uses a lot of water. And the water that they don't use, they pollute with dye or whatever.
[00:25:19] Michael Regilio: That's right. And for no reason other than we don't want to repeat an outfit. I will say, okay, this is crazy, at least the fossil fuel industry serves a purpose. I mean—
[00:25:29] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:25:29] Michael Regilio: —something has to power the world, but fashion's damage is a self-inflicted wound. We don't need to buy all this clothing. We don't need to change styles every six minutes. And it's not just making the clothes that's harmful, it's the clothes themselves.
[00:25:44] Jordan Harbinger: How so?
[00:25:45] Michael Regilio: Okay. In 2019, Vox published statistics from the fashion industry showing 60 percent of garments are made from polyester, which is a plastic, which does not break down. And when materials don't break down, they turn into microplastics. A 2017 report from the International Union for the Conservation of Nature estimated that 35 percent of all microplastics in the oceans came from the laundering of synthetic textiles.
[00:26:11] Jordan Harbinger: Laundering, right, washing our clothes. We did an episode on microplastics recently with Matthew Simon. That's episode 818, by the way. So we'll link to that in the show notes. He did mention laundry was a huge creator of pollution in terms of getting micro and nano plastics into the water supply, oceans, et cetera. And unfortunately or fortunately, the solution would've been, eh, just put a filter on your washing machine in your dryer and then throw that stuff in the trash and at least it goes into a landfill. And it's like, no, that would add 38 cents per washing machine. So we're not going to include that, but you can go buy one on Amazon for 30 bucks or whatever.
[00:26:46] Michael Regilio: Wow.
[00:26:47] Jordan Harbinger: It's obscene.
[00:26:48] Michael Regilio: I'm so glad you said that. I am definitely going to buy one for my washing machine because these figures break my heart, man.
[00:26:54] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:26:54] Michael Regilio: Just the simple act of washing synthetic fibers releases 500,000 tons of microfibers into the ocean each year. That's equivalent to 50 billion plastic bottles.
[00:27:07] Jordan Harbinger: That's a staggeringly high number. Again, that I can't really wrap my head around. I need it in buses or airliners or boats or something. But it does jive with what Matthew Simon was saying on the podcast. There's just a huge, huge, huge number of plastic, and it settles at the bottom and then fish eat them, and then they end up with the plat and then we eat the fish and there's a fricking guitar pick worth a plastic in that thing or whatever. It's really, really nasty.
[00:27:31] Michael Regilio: It is, and the number is so huge that I had to double-check it. But the UN Environmental Program, the World Economic Forum, Business Insider and on and on, they all back this figure up. It's shocking and it's hard to fathom. I don't think a human brain can understand a million, let alone a billion. Let me ask you this and don't think about it based on the fact that you know what a second is, and you can comprehend that measurement, best guess top of your head. How long is one million seconds?
[00:28:01] Jordan Harbinger: Without doing any math, I'm going to say like a month or three weeks or something like that.
[00:28:05] Michael Regilio: It's a little more than 11 days.
[00:28:07] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, so I was off. Gotcha.
[00:28:09] Michael Regilio: So now you know what a million seconds is. So without doing any math in your head, what's a billion seconds?
[00:28:17] Jordan Harbinger: Oh gosh. This is going to be some years, I don't know, like three years. I know I'm way off. This is bad because I'm not doing any math. I'm purposely not doing any math.
[00:28:24] Michael Regilio: It is 31.69 years.
[00:28:28] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. I wasn't even close. I was originally going to say six years, and I was like, that's too many. But now it's the entire lifetime of the average listener of this show.
[00:28:36] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:28:36] Jordan Harbinger: Holy cow. That's a lot.
[00:28:38] Michael Regilio: And we're talking about 50 billion.
[00:28:40] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, wow. So 50 times that. That's 50 billion bottles here. 50 billion bottles there, so every year. Pretty soon, well, we're talking about a big number. When I visualize this plastic filling the oceans, there should be a sense of urgency to change what is happening. But it's say, oh God, it seems so hopeless.
[00:28:57] Michael Regilio: Yeah. And by the way, that doesn't include the actual number of real bottles we're tossing into the ocean. Something definitely has to change.
[00:29:04] Jordan Harbinger: Right. So we're measuring this in bottles, but that's not actual bottles, that's just the crap that comes off our clothes. We're also throwing bottles into the ocean. Okay. So the—
[00:29:11] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:29:11] Jordan Harbinger: The fashion industry, the problem here is they employ millions of people, and surely, the change is going to be catastrophic to so many livelihoods, especially in what's referred to as the global south, aka people, countries where people make clothes.
[00:29:24] Michael Regilio: Exactly. And look, this becomes a whole conversation about globalization. So I'll try and keep this fashion-focused. I don't think it's surprising to learn that the people who make our clothes don't have it so good. According to research by Global Labor Justice, female garment workers in H&M and the Gap supplier factories in Asia face poor work conditions, low wages and forced overtime.
[00:29:46] Jordan Harbinger: Okay, so global labor justice sounds a little bit like, okay, they've got their sort of lefty agenda, but I find that they're probably not making this up because you can find this information in a lot of different sources. But I also have a question. Why just female garment workers? Are men in the industry treated better somehow? Or is this sort of a women's only industry? What's going on here?
[00:30:08] Michael Regilio: Yes, exactly. 80 percent of fashion factory employees are women. And in countries like Bangladesh, there are stereotypes about what jobs women can do. The industry exploits and takes advantage of women working in these factories because, well, it's easy. They have few options. According to a Wall Street Journal article, one in six people on Earth work for the textile industry.
[00:30:32] Jordan Harbinger: Oh.
[00:30:32] Michael Regilio: And only two percent of them earn a living wage. Here's the thing. That's also by design.
[00:30:39] Jordan Harbinger: So that, okay, Wall Street Journal, not known as a sort of liberal lefty publication, by the way. I think most people realize that. That's an insane amount of people working in the clothing industry. I had no idea. One in six on Earth, okay, and two percent of them earning a living wage. So that's just tens of millions or hundreds of millions of people sewing for pennies on the dollar. Looking like I bought something new at Zara can't be worth this injustice.
[00:31:03] Michael Regilio: I would think not. And look, the fact of the matter is it's just not very progressive to wear all these hip clothes. The fast fashion industry takes advantage of women's already unequal position in societies and uses countries that pay women significantly less than men. The Irish News Outlet, the journal reported in 2013 that the industry moved factories to Vietnam for cheaper labor. Vietnam then passed labor laws to protect their workers. And you know what the industry did?
[00:31:32] Jordan Harbinger: I'm sure that what happened is they supported and lobbied for the workers to be treated fairly, and everyone lived happily ever after.
[00:31:38] Michael Regilio: Of course not. The industry didn't update their practices, they moved to Bangladesh.
[00:31:43] Jordan Harbinger: So forget chasing a high. The fashion industry is essentially chasing a low, so low cost, low quality, low standards, and it seems like that's inevitable for pretty much every industry, unfortunately.
[00:31:53] Michael Regilio: It sure does, and it's not just the labor. According to Laura E. McAndrews, the textile professor at the University of Georgia, the fashion industry wants cheap machines, cheap factories, and cheap materials in Bangladesh. Those low and unenforced standards caused the deadliest accidental structural failure in modern history. The 2013 Rana Plaza factory collapsed, 1,134 people died. All for low-priced clothing will wear seven times. Low prices and low-skilled labor are sewn into the system. The cheapest materials are stretch materials, you know, t-shirts, jeans, yoga pants, and it's not a coincidence that stretch materials are made with low-skilled labor.
[00:32:38] Jordan Harbinger: That's interesting. I wouldn't have necessarily guessed that, but I guess that makes sense why yoga pants were having such a moment.
[00:32:46] Michael Regilio: Me too. And I knew it couldn't be because they look classy. It's because the industry loves stretch materials and for no other reason than we can make it cheap and imperfectly. George Hahn highlights the pitfall of stretch clothing on his website, calling the material the high fructose corn syrup of fashion. He points out a tailored suit, has to be made precisely and fit right, stretch materials, mask imperfections, and don't have to fit right at all. They just stretch to whatever shape they need. This is just me pontificating here, but the cycle seems to be a vicious one. With well-made clothes, they need to be a good fit. With modern, fast fashion, trendy wear, the clothes stretch to fit us so you don't have to be fit for your clothes to fit.
[00:33:31] Jordan Harbinger: I see what you did there.
[00:33:32] Michael Regilio: Yeah.
[00:33:32] Jordan Harbinger: Clever.
[00:33:32] Michael Regilio: Thank you. At a quick look around any town, USA, it's obvious we're not that fit.
[00:33:38] Jordan Harbinger: That conclusion might be a bit of a stretch. But I hear you. We've seen people built, you know, well like me try to stuff themselves into spandex or whatever, and it ain't pretty. I get that it's more forgiving for both the way you look and for the way that it's created. That's interesting. I knew it was forgiving for the way that you look, but I never thought, oh, it's also forgiving so that somebody could just make it really damn fast, really damn cheap with very low skill and it looks kind of okay, because it's going to look how it's going to look once you pack your butt cheeks into it or whatever.
[00:34:06] Michael Regilio: Exactly. And look, these are hard problems to address, but they are being addressed. There are eco-conscious designers and companies out there. But they're not the norm.
[00:34:15] Jordan Harbinger: Are there any benefits to the fast fashion industry? I mean, it's got to be easier for parents buying clothes every time their kids have a growth spurt and whatnot. Like my kids' shoes fit for two months now.
[00:34:24] Michael Regilio: Yeah, I mean, I get that. And proponents will tell you that fast fashion's benefits are affordable prices, instant gratification for consumers, and Time Magazine dedicated an issue to the democratization of stylish clothing. That last point is complete nonsense. Democratization of stylist clothing is just a fancy way of saying capitalism. That's how we vote with our dollars.
[00:34:50] Jordan Harbinger: You know what you're going to want to keep around for more than two measly weeks? Something from the fine products and services that support this show. We'll be right back.
[00:34:57] This episode is sponsored in part by Airbnb. We used to travel a lot for podcast interviews and conferences, and we love staying in Airbnbs. We often meet interesting people. The stays there are more unique, more fun. One of our favorite places to stay in LA, a sweet older couple. Their kids moved out. They've got an in-law unit in their backyard. We used to stay there. We used to book that place every time we flew down for interviews, and it's great. They had parking, they had snacks. They would bake banana bread for me because they knew I liked it. They listened to this podcast, which is a great way to become one of my favorite people. So maybe you've stayed in Airbnb before, you thought to yourself, "Hey, this seems pretty doable. Maybe my place could be an Airbnb." We built one in our house with a separate entrance because we thought we would utilize the space. It could be as simple as starting with a spare room, your whole place while you're away. You could be sitting in an Airbnb right now and not even know it. Maybe you live in a city with a music festival, an epic sporting tournament, and that noise isn't your cup of tea. Get out of town. Make a quick getaway. Leave the chaos behind. Meanwhile, Airbnb your home, earn a little extra cash while you're at it. Or maybe you're in the work-from-home club and now you're back in the office. The home office well equipped, ready for use, so it doesn't have to sit there and gather dust, turn it into an Airbnb, earn a neat little sum on the side. So whether you could use a little extra money to cover some bills or something a little more fun, your home might be worth more than you think. Find out how much at airbnb.ca/host.
[00:36:14] Once again, thank you for listening to the show. Deals, discount codes, all at jordanharbinger.com/deals, or search for any sponsor using the search box right on the website or our AI search bot as well. Thank you for supporting those who support the show.
[00:36:28] Now, for the rest of Skeptical Sunday.
[00:36:32] It's not a convincing argument for fast fashion. Again, I always like to highlight here. This is not an argument against capitalism. At least on my end, it doesn't really make a whole lot of sense. The idea that, oh, like now everyone can afford to be stylish. It's like, okay, that one, not a human right. Two, this stuff is crap. It's also, I find it hard to believe that you couldn't save your money and buy a couple of nice pieces. It's the whole thing. The idea is making people feel like they need this crap, not that they actually do. That's where I'm at with it.
[00:37:02] Michael Regilio: Which gets us to the people that are making us feel like we need this crap. The entire industry now is driven by influencers and they all seem to get a pass, but it's problematic. Turn on any fast fashion TikTok video and you'll get a person who portrays themselves as so progressive on social about—
[00:37:18] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:37:18] Michael Regilio: —economic and ecological issues while they sell us the very problems that they claim to hate. I mean, if there was an influencer on TikTok saying, "Hey guys, we need to fight climate change. So I'm here to talk today about the exceptional new high-grade octane fueled by Exxon." The contradictions would be obvious, but with the fashion industry, the irony is often printed right on the T-shirts. The fight for women's rights shirt, your favorite TikTok influencer is wearing, was probably made in a factory where women were not treated properly.
[00:37:48] Jordan Harbinger: So what should we be looking for on the labels when we buy our clothes to avoid this? Can I go to the store and go, "Oh, I don't want this because this is made in a certain place, or with certain materials.
[00:37:58] Michael Regilio: No, I really don't think so. The made-in label is unique to the US. Europe knows how meaningless that is and doesn't even use it. It's misleading, it's accurate. There are a lot of pending legislation to take the country of origin off our labels. The reality is it's a global effort and a piece of fast fashion is rarely made in just one place.
[00:38:18] Jordan Harbinger: Why don't they list all the places that contributed to our clothing, like an ingredients list.
[00:38:22] Michael Regilio: Because that would be one long label. In 2015, NPR followed the journey of a shirt from design to store. This proved the supply chain is invisible. We can grow cotton in the US, spin it in into yarn in another country, send it to another country to make the textile, and another country to be turned into a shirt. So which country is it made in? What country do you put on the label? In the United States, this is crazy, whichever country sewed the main seam gets the label. That's it. Made in the USA is bullsh*t. It's loosey-goosey. So sure, say it's made in the USA.
[00:38:56] Jordan Harbinger: Don't thread on me. Hmm. Anyone? All right. So that I understand. So this is essentially the last person to touch the thing is like, "Aha, I'm putting my flag on." It's like the moon. I'm putting my flag here. Well, you didn't make it ish. I'm putting my flag here. Don't say anything. I'm just branding it. It's branding.
[00:39:11] Michael Regilio: Of course. And the point is our clothes touch a lot of borders, and that's just how the supply chain works.
[00:39:16] Jordan Harbinger: So again, we're talking about globalization. Love it or hate it.
[00:39:18] Michael Regilio: Yeah. That's because you can't avoid it. It's part of the fast fashion conversation. Ultimately, we are failing to create an industry that looks after its employees and their surroundings. Fast fashion is all about the ways to make bigger profits all the time.
[00:39:34] Jordan Harbinger: What can we do to wean ourselves off this cycle? I mean, I've done a pretty good job of becoming an old, middle-aged, irrelevant guy, so I don't need it. What can other people do who are not as pathetic as me?
[00:39:45] Michael Regilio: I would say be like you, be like Jordan Harbinger, just by one. Just because a t-shirt is 6.50 doesn't mean you need five or save up and buy one higher quality brand that will last you. Huffington Post published an article in 2014 alerting consumers that we are trained to believe, the more we have, the happier we'll be. But that's so sad, and you will die a thousand deaths in the materialistic cycle. We seem to be trapped in these shirts that only cost five bucks are sold at an over 75 percent markup. These clothes are cheap, like really, really cheap.
[00:40:21] Jordan Harbinger: Does anyone in the fashion industry have integrity? Are they speaking up about this kind of thing at all?
[00:40:26] Michael Regilio: Well, I mean, it costs money to speak up. That's just the reality of the world we live in. They teach complicity. After fashion school, you're thrown into the industry. How the hell are you supposed to affect change? But the Harvard Business Review believes responsible business owners and supply chain managers can help factories reinvest into their mills and factories and create a sustainable, ethical, moral supply chain.
[00:40:49] Jordan Harbinger: The obvious fix seems for people to want less fashionable stuff, and we just know that's not going to fricking happen. So are there eco-conscious designers out there, or is that kind of also BS?
[00:41:02] Michael Regilio: There are several. It just takes research. fashnerd.com introduced me to Spain's Ecoalf, which creates shoes from algae and recycled plastic as part of its upcycling, the Oceans collection.
[00:41:12] Jordan Harbinger: Hmm.
[00:41:13] Michael Regilio: Yeah. And through the World Economic Forum, I discovered an Amsterdam brand called Gumdrop. And this is so interesting. The brand collects gum to create a new type of rubber. They state 3.3 million pounds of gum end up on Amsterdam's path every year, and it takes 2.2 pounds of gum to make four pair of shoes.
[00:41:32] Jordan Harbinger: That's amazing. So chewing gum to make shoes, I've never heard of this. That's incredible. Also, that is a lot of gum on the street, but also makes me feel a little weird about all the gum I've just swallowed over the years.
[00:41:45] Michael Regilio: You're rubber, and I'm shoe. Pause for laughter.
[00:41:48] Jordan Harbinger: Yes.
[00:41:51] Michael Regilio: Here in the US, Patagonia has made fleece jackets from recycled bottles since 1993. Websites like mygreencloset.com list the many companies that offer free repairs, trade-in deals, and use surplus materials for zero waste fashion collections. In the Netherlands, Wintervacht turns blankets and curtains into coats and jackets.
[00:42:11] Jordan Harbinger: So there are options here. I'm still blown away by the chewing gum shoe thing. But unfortunately, I feel like with the way things go, we're going to have a building full of women in Bangladesh chewing gum all day instead of sewing.
[00:42:23] Michael Regilio: No, no, no. You know what? The solution is everybody spit your gum onto the sidewalk, let them come get it. No bad idea. Okay. The fact of the matter is the consumer can do more than any designer. All you have to do is stop. Stop playing the fast fashion game. Buy quality, well-made clothes that will last for years. There are fashion icons leading the way. Rosario Dawson, Emma Watson, and Gwyneth Paltrow are few names promoting brands and philosophies focused on sustainable fashion. Stella McCartney teamed up with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation to launch a report on redesigning fashion's future. Guess has launched a wardrobe recycling program in the US. Levi's new collection uses 90 percent less water and they started a program that recycles old jeans into home insulation.
[00:43:08] Jordan Harbinger: So is recycling stuff in other ways that are not donating? Is that the answer, essentially?
[00:43:12] Michael Regilio: Yes. Some argue recycling is self-energy intensive.
[00:43:16] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that's the question, right? Like, okay, does it then just use 8,000 trees to recycle a pair of jeans into a pair of jeans?
[00:43:24] Michael Regilio: Yeah. And it does nothing to address our throwaway culture. We might find an alternative in the clothing rental market. There are several apps and websites that allow a consumer to feel no guilt in wearing an outfit once because they rent the clothes and send them back.
[00:43:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, I'm not renting my underwear, but I get it for suits and other stuff like that. Okay. What else can us as consumers do?
[00:43:44] Michael Regilio: Vogue business says that by skipping one in six washing loads, washing half loads at below 30 degrees, and substituting every six dryer usage with open-air drying, we would reduce consumer emissions by more than half.
[00:43:58] Jordan Harbinger: Ugh, but it's not practical to put the responsibility on the consumer's washing habits. You got a kid, he pees on you. You're not like, "Oh no, I'm skipping this. This is my skip load. I can't wear this thing now." We're like, "Oh, I need this tomorrow. I hope it dries outside in the rain and snow before then." Come on.
[00:44:15] Michael Regilio: It's not perfect. It's an imperfect system, especially if you have kids peeing on you.
[00:44:19] Jordan Harbinger: Yes.
[00:44:19] Michael Regilio: Which not a part of my life. Probably a part of your life.
[00:44:23] Jordan Harbinger: Indeed. A much bigger part of my life than I actually would like at this point.
[00:44:27] Michael Regilio: Okay. So there's also upcycling, which is making clothes out of used materials and textiles. Some fashion brands are joining initiatives to cut back on textile production and grow cotton more sustainably. In March 2019, the United Nations launched the Alliance of Sustainable Fashion, which will coordinate efforts across agencies to make the industry less harmful.
[00:44:47] Jordan Harbinger: Man, fast fashion, this is totally changed our relationship with clothing and it's just obviously not for the better.
[00:44:53] Michael Regilio: Get this. Studies show that the smartest thing we can do is wear the same basic outfit every day. There's a great medium.com article about some of our greatest minds Jobs, Zuckerberg, Einstein, Obama. They all have their signature looks. They know we are only capable of so many decisions a day. So eliminating all thoughts about fashion saves brain power.
[00:45:14] Jordan Harbinger: I know Elizabeth Holmes was into that for a minute. I don't know if she's one of the greatest minds of our time, but certainly one of the greatest minds that's in federal prison right now.
[00:45:22] Michael Regilio: No, but it's totally true. If you don't have to think about what you're going to wear every day, that gives, that frees up a lot of brain power to think about other things. So look, if you want to look like everyone else, keep buying all the new trends. If you want to look smart, just wear the same thing every day.
[00:45:36] Jordan Harbinger: Well, now I got no freaking clue what I'm going to wear tomorrow. Thanks a lot, Michael.
[00:45:40] And thank you for suggesting this topic to us. This is as usual, a fan idea submission. Topic suggestions are always welcome. Just email me, firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also DM me on the various social medias, but not TikTok, where I am currently banned.
[00:45:55] Anyway, once again, a reminder that the Stitcher app will no longer work for any podcasts as of August 29th, 2023. So if you're using the Stitcher app, time to switch. If you're on android, Podcast Addict is a good one, Castbox. And if you're on iOS, I suggest Overcast or Apple Podcasts. The Stitcher app is going away, folks.
[00:46:14] A link to the show notes for the episode can be found at jordanharbinger.com. Transcripts are in the show notes. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on Twitter or Instagram. You can also connect with me on LinkedIn. Michael Regilio is at @MichaelRegilio. We'll link to it in the show notes because nobody can spell Regilio.
[00:46:29] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. My team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Ian Baird, Millie Ocampo, and Gabriel Mizrahi. And of course, for this one, Michael Regilio. Our advice and opinions are our own. And I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer. Do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show. Remember, we rise by lifting others. Share the show with those you love. If you found the episode useful, please share it with somebody else who needs to hear it. Maybe somebody who buys a lot of fast fashion, throwing a lot of stuff in the landfill. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we'll see you wearing the same thing next time.
[00:47:07] If you're looking for another episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show to sink your teeth into, here's a trailer for our episode with Ken Perenyi, an art forger who dodged both the FBI and the Mafia and forged thousands of paintings very well apparently because he was never caught. Check out episode 282 of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:47:27] Ken Perenyi: He gave me a book on art forgery. I began to unlock the secrets. I was a storehouse of knowledge of how to create an illusion, present it to an experienced expert, manipulate his mind, and bring him to the inevitable conclusion that the painting is genuine.
[00:47:54] We flooded the market with my paintings. And I couldn't believe what I did. I couldn't believe it. Then the dominoes started falling and eventually, the FBI will led to my door. They uncovered a mountain of evidence against me.
[00:48:12] Jordan Harbinger: But they never actually got you. Why did it go away? Why did you never get indicted and how are we having this conversation?
[00:48:22] Ken Perenyi: I guess it's the greatest story of all.
[00:48:24] Jordan Harbinger: If you want to hear more about how Ken made millions forging art, dodged the mafia, and even the FBI, check out episode 282 of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
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