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Augmenting sustainable fashion on Instagram.

Marcella-Hood, Madeleine



Media discourse surrounding fashion and sustainability tends to be negative, emphasising the problems that exist across the various stages of the lifecycle of a garment. Although consumers are increasingly aware of at least some of the issues surrounding fashion and the environment, research suggests that the scale and complexity of the problem causes them to feel detached and uncertain about how to adapt their own behaviour in response. This research positions Instagram as a digital media platform through which sustainable fashion is communicated and experienced through augmented fashion content. Instagram is recognised for its significant impact on visual culture, particularly within aesthetic sectors such as fashion. Recent research reveals that users have begun engaging in more serious subjects and debates on Instagram, including political, social and environmental issues. This has brought about opportunities for new voices who are championing sustainable fashion in a variety of manifestations. An open qualitative analysis was carried out using the hashtag #SustainableFashion to uncover themes relating to the types of content, stakeholders and mechanisms that are being used to augment sustainable fashion on Instagram. The findings reveal a positive community of content creators - including vintage enthusiasts, designers, makers and brands - who are using the hashtag regularly to share proactive content in the form of specific, targeted messages around sustainable fashion solutions. The aim was to uncover the discussions that are taking place right now and to provide grounding for future work in this area.


MARCELLA-HOOD, M. 2023. Augmenting sustainable fashion on Instagram. Sustainability [online], 15(4), article number 3609. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 14, 2023
Online Publication Date Feb 15, 2023
Publication Date Feb 28, 2023
Deposit Date Feb 20, 2023
Publicly Available Date Feb 20, 2023
Journal Sustainability
Electronic ISSN 2071-1050
Publisher MDPI
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 15
Issue 4
Article Number 3609
Keywords Sustainable fashion; Environmental consumerism; Green consumerism; Instagram; Environmentalism; Social media; Fashion industry
Public URL


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