One of the biggest selling points for exorbitantly expensive designer clothing is that it lasts forever, while more affordable fast fashion pieces are usually dismissed as shoddily constructed throwaways.
But a new study out of The University of Leeds says that cheap clothing might not be so bad after all. The study tested a range of items, from pieces that cost just a few bucks to a host of designer labels, and found that less expensive tees and denim often outlasted their pricier counterparts.
According to The Telegraph, a team led by Dr. Mark Sumner tested samples for abrasion, seam strength, and colorfastness over the course of eight weeks. The results? Fast fashion is pretty damn durable, and pricey tees might be a waste of money.
“Some of the garments performed very well across a wide range of tests - more often than not, the best products were ‘fast fashion’ products,” Dr Sumner told The Sunday Telegraph.
“A number of fast fashion products demonstrate significantly better value for money that other brands - especially when compared to ‘designer’ brands.
“Jeans from one fashion brand lasted twice as long as a designer label jeans, but cost one tenth of the price of the designer jeans.
“For the T-shirt work the designer label product was the worst performing product across all the tests we did - with an online fast fashion brand out performing all other products.”
Of course, one of the problems with fast fashion is the tendency to throw it out as styles change, which leads to waste that has a negative environmental impact. So maybe hang on to those $3 H&M sale rack finds; they should be good to go for a few years at least.