Are Exotic Skins Out of Fashion?

Something was clearly missing from Stockholm Fashion Week’s virtual catwalk on Aug. 25, and it wasn’t just a physical audience. Five days before, the show’s organizers said that fur and exotic skins had been banned from the lineup. Fur wasn’t surprising; among younger Western consumers, at least, fur has been steadily slipping down the rungs…

It’s 2020: Why Is The Pumpkin Spice Latte Still Part Of The Zeitgeist?

Batten down your palates and gird your tastebuds: pumpkin spice season is here. Never mind that we’re still basking in the sweltering depths of summer in tank tops and cutoffs. Or that a global pandemic is upending lives, ravaging the economy, and keeping people indoors. Even now, savvy as we have become about being gaslit…

Can Clothing Rental Recover From COVID-19?

For years, sustainability experts have touted rental and resale as eco-friendlier modes of consuming fashion. With a deadly disease ravaging the nation, once bustling thoroughfares reduced to ghost towns, and a long-overdue racial reckoning sweeping all corners of industry, one question looms large: Who has the appetite to shop, let alone the focus to do…

The Ruthless (and Racist) Mom-Shaming of Meghan Markle

Meghan Markle is a duck. Or perhaps she’s a rabbit. It all depends on your point of view. Indeed few figures in modern popular culture have been as polarizing as the erstwhile working royal, who abruptly upped sticks with her husband, Prince Harry, from the United Kingdom to North America in a dramatic whirlwind of…

Plastic Bags were Finally Being Banned. Then Came the Pandemic.

In a back room at his home in Santa Cruz, California, George Leonard is amassing a stockpile of plastic bags. Most of the time he eschews the things. As chief scientist at Ocean Conservancy, an environmental nonprofit based in Washington, DC, Leonard spends his time advocating against single-use plastics that can clog up waterways, suffocate…

What Is The Future Of Fast Fashion? It’s Complicated

Jenna Diioro is someone who lives to shop. A 28-year-old car-dealership manager who lives in South Jersey, Diioro used to spend hours cruising stores like Abercrombie & Fitch, Forever 21, H&M, and Hollister, where she’d spend upward of $200 each week, scooping up tops, dresses, jeans, and activewear. Just last month, she was preparing to…

Those Shoes Were Made by a Uighur Detainee

Mustafa Aksu’s hometown is in an area punctuated by billowy fields of cotton, an agricultural prefecture of the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region in far western China. As a child growing up in the 1990s, Aksu watched as middle-school-aged Uighur girls around him left Xinjiang under duress to work in garment factories in other parts of…

The Battle Over Jane Austen’s Whiteness

It began, as things sometimes do on social media, with an emoji. A pineapple emoji to be exact. Fans of Sanditon, an eight-part Jane Austen adaptation currently airing on PBS Masterpiece, have been deploying the icon on Twitter as a shorthand for their esteem and support of the show, which padded out the surviving chapters…