By Laura Anastasia

Many of our trendy, inexpensive clothes are made in places like Bangladesh, where workers—including children—toil under conditions that may shock you.

Young women hunch over sewing machines in a windowless workroom in Bangladesh. Elbow to elbow in the stifling heat, they assemble jackets. Together, the women must sew hundreds of jackets an hour, more than 1,000 a day. Their daily wage is less than $3.

Just a week or two later, these same jackets will be labeled fall’s hottest back-to-school item, selling to teens for $14.99 each at malls across the United States.

The jackets are just one example of what is known as fast fashion: trendy clothes designed, created, and sold to consumers as quickly as possible at extremely low prices. New looks arrive in stores weekly or even daily, and they cost so little that many people can afford to fill their closets with new outfits multiple times each year—then toss them the minute they go out of style.


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