Three Ways to Participate in the Slow Fashion Movement: Broke College Edition

Hey guys and welcome back to the blog! I hope everyone had a relaxing and rejuvenating weekend. Even though school started about two weeks ago, I still haven’t come to the realization that I actually have homework due next week. It’s always really hard for me to get myself back into the mood of school, despite the fact I absolutely LOVE what I’m learning about!

I’ve mentioned before in a couple of my previous posts how interested I’ve become in sustainability, the Slow Fashion Movement, and ethical fashion. My Fashion in Society class really changed my perspective on the fashion industry, and even though I love shopping, after hearing about the way people are treated overseas, I had to cut down on my shopping habits and change the way I obtain clothing. Also, in that same class, I did a capsule wardrobe experiment for my honor’s project. That project really helped me realize that I could be happy and content with my closet without shopping every week or two at places with low quality clothing and horrible ethics.

The Slow Fashion/Sustainability Movement has seen a huge increase in awareness the past couple of years. It’s become a new trend within the fashion industry, so don’t be surprised at the amount of fashion startups that claim that they are sustainable and eco-friendly. Because of our technology and heightened media coverage, people are starting to see the negative side of the fashion industry that they couldn’t see before. This, my friends, is definitely a trend that you should follow. This is an instance where jumping on the bandwagon is okay! However, as college students, we don’t have a ton of money at our disposable to spend on these new, sustainable apparel companies where one cotton t-shirt is $40! This means we have to find other ways to participate in this newfound movement without breaking the bank or spending that $40 that was meant to go towards Starbucks and Chick-Fil-A. In this blog post today, I’ll be giving you three ways to participate in The Slow Fashion Movement from the perspective of a broke college student.


1.Capsule Wardrobe

I know I mentioned this a little bit already, but doing a capsule wardrobe is a great way to be sustainable while not spending a ton of money. If you don’t know what a capsule wardrobe is, it’s basically where you take the closet you already have and decrease it down to a certain amount of items. These items are usually the things you wear the most, or the ones that apply to the current season. The length of time you work with that closet is completely up to you! Most people switch their clothing around or go shopping once a season to prepare for temperature changes or stock up on clothing that they don’t have in their capsule wardrobe. This allows you to participate in The Slow Fashion Movement because you aren’t constantly spending money on clothing from retailers that use fast fashion. NOW that money can go towards better things, like more food! This method is especially effective for those that have a ton of clothing items that are barely worn or have never been worn.


2.Thrifting/Second-Hand Shopping

This is a big resource that college students should take advantage of! I’m a HUGE fan of thrifting and second-hand shopping. Most of the jeans that I wear were bought from the thrift store and customized (either cut into shorts, distressed, or both) by me. Thrifting does take a lot of patience, which makes it seem like a turn-off to most people. I’d recommend going early in the morning on a weekend so you can take your time and search through things thoroughly without feeling rushed and pressured. A lot of good treasures can be found, and a lot of not-so-cute items can be bought and manipulated into something amazing! Second-hand shopping also includes buying clothing off of platforms such as Depop, Mercari, and Poshmark. I love this method, and half of my closet is from a second-hand source. I use Depop the most because a lot of the items appeal more to my aesthetic (minimalist, trendy items such as oversized sweaters, mom jeans, crop tops, etc). If you’re looking for more high-end items, then Poshmark is your place to go! You can get a huge deal on a lot of brands that would usually cost $70-$100 in-store. This method has helped me save a lot of money on items that I would’ve had to pay full price for in a retail store. Also, you aren’t buying directly from fast fashion stores which really helps The Slow Fashion Movement. If you’re interested in buying from these websites, click the links to check out my personal shops!



3.Borrowing/Swapping Clothing

I’m sure a ton of you guys do this unintentionally. If you have a best friend who loves your over-sized, waffle-knit cardigan, and you keep eyeing those cute, over-the-knee boots of hers, you guys have probably swapped items! This happens a lot within families especially between mothers, aunts, and sisters. Borrowing and swapping clothing is a very fast way to get some new things in your wardrobe without having to spend ANY money. For some, it’s hard to place clothing in the hands of someone else, mainly because they don’t trust others to take care of the clothing items. That’s why if you decide to borrow or swap clothing, DO IT WITH SOMEONE YOU TRUST. There are also things called Swap Parties. I’ve never been to one, so I can’t speak from experience. Basically, a group of friends will get together (4 or more) and bring huge piles of clothing that they don’t wear or want to give away. This allows everyone to dig through each other’s piles and find new, fresh items to add to their wardrobes. Surprisingly, this is even done by strangers who don’t know each other AT ALL. I know borrowing/swapping sounds a bit crazy and a little intimidating to be honest, but it really is a helpful way to get some new clothing without spending some cash. Some items in my outfit pictures aren’t even mine! A few things have been my little sister’s, and that Adidas top in the pictures above belongs to…MY BOYFRIEND. YES. If you have a husband/girlfriend/spouse/significant other definitely use their clothing to your advantage! You can really mix things up in your closet by snatching (I mean borrowing) a few things from them. Also, their clothes are usually more comfy anyway!



all photos were taken by Meagan Curtis


I hope reading these different ways to participate in The Slow Fashion Movement definitely sparked some inspiration and motivation in you guys to start participating. This shows that you don’t have to do some big, closet-clear-out to contribute to fashion sustainability. It can be done quick and easy without leaving your home, apartment, or college dorm!

Outfit Details

Top: Adidas (my boyfriend’s)

Bottoms: Black Leggings from Charlotte Russe

Jacket: Camo Jacket from Charlotte Russe

Shoes: Adidas

*All of these items were bought about a year ago! I still make sure to incorporate old items into my outfits and clothing routines. This is a NEW outfit combination that I made from things I’ve had longer than a few months

Until next time,


Follow me on social media for more fashion, college, and lifestyle inspiration! Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook.



16 thoughts on “Three Ways to Participate in the Slow Fashion Movement: Broke College Edition

  1. phoenixraay says:

    Love this post and the idea behind it! I love anything to do with supporting movement towards becoming more environmentally friendly! I know my sister thrift shops a lot lol I am not a huge shopper but I will try that out next time!

    I found you from the community pool 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. zeckrombryan says:

    What a wonderful blog that you have, Lexi. Really love the way that you portray yourself on your blog, you really do live a life of a fashionista. Loving the tips and your fashion posts as they are aesthetic and really do open our eyes to the your fashion. Hope to see more from you. Have hope, write on!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. livingwithyourstuff says:

    Really interesting post! I really like that you suggest buying second-hand clothes and swapping intems instead of buying from “sustainable brands”. I guess there is enough clothing out there in the world already and every new piece uses up resources. Thanks for sharing your experiences!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jasmine says:

    Super Dope. I took a human geography course this past semester and it taught me a ton about the impacts of fashion. A capsule wardrobe is a great idea. I think I’m gonna do that next.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lexi says:

      Yes girl! I totally agree. I’ve been using Pinterest to find new ways to style items I already own, and it’s been a life saver! Thank you for the sweet comment ❤️


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