My 10 week challenge: Fashion Detox

Tomorrow is the beginning of The Fashion Detox Challenge.

I, and many others, have signed up to take part in a 10 week challenge by pledging to NOT spend a SINGLE PENNY on clothes, FOR 10 WEEKS!


First, I’ll give you some background.

The Fashion Detox Challenge is being led by Emma Kidd, who worked as an international lingerie designer for around 10 years. She designed garments for brands ranging from Primark to Victoria Secrets. She is currently researching more sustainable ways of buying and using clothes and so has set up this challenge.

The challenge is part of a bigger research project as Emma is currently studying at PHD level at Glasgow Caledonia University and is looking into sustainability within the clothing industry.

Now as a researcher, one of the things that has struck me, especially in relation to the environment, is just the sheer amount of clothing that we’re consuming and throwing away.

Emma Kidd

The equivalent of 105 women’s wardrobes go to landfill every 15 minutes. Yes, you read correctly; every 15 MINUTES. That is 10,000 garments in the UK alone. Materials can take upwards of 40 years to decompose, most a lot longer than that.

The challenge will run from the Monday the 18th of February (TOMORROW!) until Sunday the 28th of April. It’s time to test the theory; buy less, wear well.

My challenge

To everyone who knows me, and even those who don’t, it is obvious that I enjoy my fashion. I have spent the majority of my teenage years changing my style by the month and we all know, with a new style comes a new wardrobe. A night out? A new outfit. A day out? A new outfit. Nothing to do? A new outfit. I swear, Hermes knew my address by heart.

I can just imagine the look on my mums face when I tell her I will not be spending a single penny on clothing for a whole 10 weeks. It’s okay mum! I can do it!

I am sure it has become quite obvious by now that I have decided to become more conscious when it comes to my shopping habits, but with promoting a new ethical fashion lifestyle, I’ve had a lingering guilt. It comes whenever someone asks me where my top is from and I answer, Primark.

Attitude Organic posted a Facebook post that really resonated with me just a few weeks ago.

“Today I would like to discuss a bit of different topic. Still related to ethical and eco-friendly fashion but from a different perspective. ๐Ÿ‘—
Many ethical influencers share post everyday wearing in a new outfit. I find it great because it proves that sustainability can be fashionable and it allows to educate people who still have their doubts. (Or are just unaware of the environmental impacts of the fashion industry) โœ…
I have a different point of view. I did buy fast fashion before I got into ethical alternatives and I will keep wearing it as long as I can. I am not gonna throw everything away and pretend I wear only ethical labels. โ›”๏ธ
On one hand, wasting (even fast fashion pieces) canโ€™t be ethical. On the other hand I want to be fully transparent and let you know that there are many ways to be stylish while sustainable.” – Attitude Organic

Taken from Attitude Organic’s Facebook page.

We shouldn’t be ashamed of our past buys. In fact, it goes against sustainability to throw out our ‘unethical‘ and ‘unsustainable‘ high street clothes. I purchased these clothes for a reason; because I want to wear them.

So, my challenge to myself (and it’s a big one) is to pick just 6 items of clothing and wear only those six items for a whole week.

Starting tomorrow, I will be posting on my Instagram my chosen 6 items at the beginning of the week and an Outfit of the Day post everday showing you how I have styled these items differently and in ways that show just how easy it is to work with the wardrobe you already have.

Trust me, the thought of being seen in something more than once in a space of time that people will actually remember is giving me anxiety. But, I think this is extremely important and I really want to practice what I preach in terms of my clothing habits. So, if a former self-confessed shopaholic like me can do it, then you sure as hell can.


  • 6 items of clothing from Monday to Friday.
  • Items include tops, jumpers, trousers or skirts (I don’t own many dresses).
  • Outfits will be adapted from day to night if necessary.
  • Hygiene will be kept in mind (I promise).
  • Jackets won’t count as an item.

I will be doing this for the entire 10 weeks and will be keeping my own ‘Fashion Detox Diary‘ on here as well.

Follow my Instagram @el__inspired to see how I am getting on.

Follow along with The Fashion Detox Challenge on Instagram at @fashiondetoxchallenge as well and you can use the hashtag #10weekchallenge.

Published by Erin-Louise Kirsop

Creator of El Inspired. Journalism student and movie addict on the journey to a more sustainable life.

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