VERiFiED MAGAZINE

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Bridging the gap between fashion, politics, society and youth culture.

VERiFiED

ISSUE 01 (SUMMER)

£4.50



01- VETEMENTS ADVERT

02- CONTENTS

CONTENTS

03+04- MOST SICK’NING LOOKS DRAG

RACE UK

05+06- ‘CULTURE’ WHEN IS IT

APPROPRIATED AND WHEN IS IT APPRECIATED?

07+08- WHO REALLY PAYS THE PRICE FOR

YOUR SHOPPING HABITS?

09+10- COMEBACK OF 90s AND EARLY 00s

FASHION INTERVIEW (Juicy Couture)

11+12- POLITICAL STATEMENTS THROUGH

FASHION

13- LOCAL YOUTH CAMPAIGN

(How a student run campaign made the

Government make yet another U-turn)

14- GUCCI ADVERT


MOST SICK’NING

LOOKS FROM DRAG

RACE UK

Drag is an art form - a gender-bending art form that sees a

person dress in expressive clothing and make-up to exaggerate

a specific identity, usually of the opposite sex. A way of being free

and expressing one’s true self.

03


“WE’RE ALL BORN

NAKED, THE REST IS

DRAG”

“DON’T BE SCARED

TO EMBRACE THE

FEMME, WHETHER

YOU’RE HE, SHE,

THEY OR THEM.”

AWHORA

BIMINI BON BOULASH

04

“IF YOU CAN’T LOVE

YOURSELF, HOW THE

HELL YOU GUNNA LOVE

SOMEONE ELSE!”

“THE CHEEK,

THE NERVE,

THE GALL,

THE AUDACITY,

& THE GUMP

TION”

& THE GUMPTION”


‘CULTURE’

APPROPRIATED?

Can white people wear braids? Who can celebrate Notting Hill

Carnival? Am I a culture vulture?

We live in a time when

everything we do is closely observed

and nobody is safe from

their own social media past. Enter

the term ‘Cancel culture,’ which

refers to the popular practice of

withdrawing support for (cancelling)

public figures and companies

after they have done, or

said, something considered

objectionable or offensive.

Cancel culture closely relates

to- and is most often

brought on by- an individual,

usually White and of a

certain privilege, appropriating

one of the many cultures

from the BAME community.

But the question is: When does

one cross the line between appreciation

and appropriation?

First things first, what is

cultural appropriation? Cultural

appropriation, in short,

is when a dominant culture,

meaning the most visible and accepted

culture within society (e.g.,

White and Western), take ‘things’

from another culture that experiences

oppression (repeated and

prolonged discrimination). Cultural

appropriation is about power,

where those with privilege can

just take whatever they want,

go wherever they want, and are

able to fall back on the argument of:

“Well, I didn’t mean any harm.

Cultural appropriation is definitely

not cool. It brings out the worst in

05

people; not only can it be deeply

offensive and hurt those affected,

but it also makes appropriating

culture look absolutely

ridiculous. Just google Justin

Bieber with dreadlocks. But,

with the already prominent

identity issues that face those

who have their cultures stolen,

they are not normally

‘appreciated’ by those

‘stealing their cultures’.

These are known in youth

slang as ‘Culture Vultures.’

A Culture Vulture is a practitioner

of cultural appropriation.

A Culture Vulture is

an inauthentic individual who

attempts to identify with aspects

of another culture and claim it

as their own. They do this by

mimicking aspects of culture that

belong to another group of people

and not giving credit where

credit is due, which creates

the illusion that the aspect of

culture they are mimicking is

authentic to them. They also

do this by claiming that certain

aspects of another group of peoples’

cultures originated with them,

with no historical proof to back

their claims.

But for some caught in the firing

line, they are just extremely naïve

and, instead of appropriating a

culture, they are purely just appreciating

it. There is an exceptionally


APPRECIATED?

fine line between appreciation

and appropriation that

social media users continually

debate, define, and

defend.

06

Cultural appreciation is

when you earnestly seek

to learn about or explore

a different culture.

You learn. You listen.

You strive to

understand. You

seek to honour its

beliefs and tradition

and, most importantly,

you show

appreciation to the

culture and NOT just

use it for your own

personal gain – money,

social media likes, etc.

For example, recently,

Adele faced accusations

of cultural appropriation

after sharing an Intagram

post to her 39.2 million followers

on the 30th of August.

In the shared post, Adele

was supporting bantu knots

(small, coiled buns typically

associated with people of

African descent) and a bikini

decorated with the Jamaican

flag. The bizarre

post was captioned “Happy

what would be Notting

Hill Carnival my beloved

London.” Notting Hill Carnival,

Europe’s largest street

party, celebrates Caribbean culture

– from the food to the

colours, music and much

more.

So, was Adele an example

of someone caught up in the

whole discussion of ‘CUL-

TURE’ as an appreciator, or

an appropriator?

People were caught in two

minds, with Instagram

users commenting:

“Bantu knots are NOT

to be worn by white

people in any context,

period.”

While others came to her

defence, including Labour

MP David Lammy, who

dismissed the allegations of

cultural appropriation as “poppycock.”

As well as, the model,

Naomi Campbell (whose mother

was born in Jamaica), who

commented on Adele’s picture

with two love heart emojis and

two pictures of the Jamaican

flag.

So, what can you do to avoid cultural

appreciation?

- Listen to the people who are

most affected.

- If you were to get called In or

Out, listen even more and then

admit your mistake.

- Always be open to learning from

those leading.


WHO REALLY PAYS THE PRICE

Like me, a lot of people find

themselves constantly scrolling

through fashion app after

fashion app.

Especially during lockdown!

In fact, 55% of the UK’s population’s

buying clothes online,

according to Statista 2021.

My personal favourite online

brand is ASOS, which I’ll admit

I spend way too much time on.

However, after finding myself

going through a documentary

rabbit hole at 2am, I landed on

a Stacey Dooley documentary

called ‘Stacey Dooley Investigates,

Fashion’s Dirty Secrets’.

This documentary made

me aware of something extremely

disturbing that’s been

right in front of my eyes, yet

most of us are so blind to. So

much so, that we are actually

part of the problem. Most

of us look for clothes on an

app or in a shop, buy it and

then wear it. But how many of

us actually think about where

what we buy (and discard) all

comes from? How is it that,

we can buy runway clothing

so quickly, so cheaply and so

accessibly?

The readily available, inexpensively

made fashion of today

is described by a term called,

‘fast fashion’. It’s called fast

fashion for a reason, that being,

just how fast retailers can

move designs from the fashion

shows to stores, therefore

keeping pace with constant

demand for more and different

styles.

So, who and what does fast fashion

impact?

07

The Planet –

Fast fashion’s impact on the environment

is extreme. With the pressure to reduce

costs and speed up production time, fashion

retailers cut environmental corners

along the way. Fast fashion’s negative

impact includes, its use of cheap, toxic

textile dyes—making the fashion industry

the second largest polluter of clean water

globally, after agriculture. Further, is

fast fashion’s questionable use of cheap

materials – the most popular choice being

polyester, which is derived from fossil

fuels, and is a huge contributor to global

warming.

The Workers –

There is not only an environmental cost to fast fashion,

but a human cost, too.

Fast fashion impacts garment workers who work in dangerous

environments, for low wages, and without fundamental

human rights. Environments like this are referred

to as ‘sweatshops’. Sweatshops often have poor working

conditions, unfair wages, unreasonable hours, child labour,

and a lack of benefits for workers.

Women from the age of 15 (in some cases even younger)

make up 85 to 90% of sweatshop workers. One example

that shows how appalling the working conditions

are in sweatshops is: The fact that some employers force

female workers to take birth control and routine pregnancy

tests, in order to avoid paying maternity leave, or

providing appropriate health benefits.

Consumers –

Fast fashion can impact consumers

themselves, encouraging a ‘throw-away’

culture. It is capitalism at its worse: Fast

fashion makes us believe that we need to

shop more (and more) and spend (more

and more) to stay on top of trends, creating

a constant sense of need and ultimate

dissatisfaction.


FOR YOUR SHOPPING HABITS?

So, how can you help make fashion greener and more

environmentally friendly?

Shop in charity shops –

Charity shops promote re-using and recycling:

They provide a sustainable and

ethical option when you wish to dispose

of unwanted clothes. Therefore, instead

of throwing away unwanted clothing, you

can give them a new lease of life through

someone else and if a charity shop cannot

sell an item, they will seek to recycle it via

a textile recycler. Charity shops are able to

reuse or recycle more than 90% of donated

clothing.

Picture of a charity shop -

(taken by myself)

They also reduce items ending up in landfill,

by boosting re-use and recycling. Which

in turn, reduces CO2 gases entering the atmosphere,

as the reduction in landfill helps

makes a positive difference to the UK’s

carbon footprint and global emissions.

Opt for apps like Depop rather than Pretty

Little Thing –

Depop is the fashion marketplace app where the next

generation come to discover unique items. With a global

community buying, selling and connecting to make fashion

more inclusive, diverse and less wasteful.

Though Depop may not be the saviour to the climate crisis,

one can see that it’s helping shift the Gen Z shopping

culture, as you don’t have to cut out your shopping habits,

but now you can do it guilt-free. As Depop is basically

an online charity shop and therefore has similar benefits.

So hopefully this has opened your eyes a bit to the process

your clothes go through before they get to your

front door. And maybe just maybe this might be what

you’ve needed to hear to motivate you to look at buying

pre-loved clothes in a different light and play your part in

helping to improve the enviroment.

08


COME BACK OF 90s

AND EARLY 00s FASHION

MODEL:

APRIL MACKAY

WEARING:

FULL JUICY

COUTURE VELOUR

TRACKSUIT

09


Everything you either loved or hated from the ’90s and early 2000s’ are

back and as stylish as ever. Beauty student and fashion enthusiast April

Mackay spills all.

Why do you think it is that 90s and early 00s

fashion is so popular at the moment?

I think its because of how comfortable it is, cause 90s

fashion is very casual and baggy, like oversized jeans,

joggers, hoodies you know and then early 2000s is like

crop tops, low-rise jenas and mini-skirts and stuff like

that. So I think we’ve kind of combined the two together

and that’s what fashion is nowadays. I also think the

revival of old films and stuff like Mean girls and Clueless

are all so iconic and very nostalgic and are just

as popular today as they were when they came, so I

definitely think they have a HUGE (she says this in an

over-exaggerated way) impact on our fashion.

What are your favourite outfits, clothing items

or brands?

I really like obviously Juicy Couture (she’s wearing a

full blue Juicy Couture tracksuit). What else, I kinda

like it all really. I love flares you know flared jeans and

the material flares. I love baggy oversized clothing.

Crop tops, animal print, it’s all very cool-casual. I love

it. There’s an American brand called Babyphat that I

follow on Instagram, it’s extremely 90s – early 2000s.

Who are your fashion inspirations?

My main inspiration comes from like social media

and what other people around me wear. I follow a

lot of fashion Instagram accounts that post y2k (she

showed me an account called @y2k2006), accounts

all about the 90s and 00s like pictures of celebs from

the different fashion shows, red carpets, paparazzi

pics and just stuff like that where they would wear

like low cut jeans and crop tops and stuff like that. So

yeah, people are like Paris Hilton, Aaliyah and just

you know like the celebs like that, Britney spears,

Pamela Anderson.

10


11


FASHIONS IMPACT ON POLITICS

Fashion is an art; the way one dresses can

represent different aspects of their personality.

People try to express themselves through the

clothing and accessories that they wear, which

are often a sign of the times, and trends tend to

come back every couple of decades. For example,

look at the recent revamp of 90s fashion.

So how is politics linked to fashion?

First things first, politics doesn’t just consist of

how countries are run, the government it’s made

up of, or the law, etc. Politics: It’s an extremely

broad term that covers things from social issues

to current affairs, from policy to society. Politics is

also known as political science. So, in this case,

movements like Black Lives Matter, Me-too, the

feminist movement, and anti-toxic masculinity,

are all included in the discussion on politics.

The idea that politics and fashion are linked has

been around for decades. It allows individuals,

including celebrities, to show solidarity and support,

as well as bring attention to multiple different

situations/movements. “Fashion functions

as a mirror to our times, so it is inherently political,”

notes Andrew Bolton, Wendy Yu Curator

in Charge of The Costume Institute at the Metropolitan

Museum of Art. “It’s been used to express

patriotic, nationalistic, and propagandistic

tendencies as well as complex issues related to

class, race, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality.”

In light of the Me-Too movement, the demand

for equal pay, and the growing number of female

politicians, though grassroots activism and

bold statements have always been essential to

feminism, fashion also plays a part in shattering

gender boundaries. From Mary Quant inventing

the revolutionary miniskirt in the 1960s, which

rebelled against the taboo of women not showing

too much skin, to multiple attendees of the 2018

Oscars wearing all black outfits to show solidarity

and support to the victims of sexual assault, highlighted

the movement Me-too. All of which are

extremely powerful protests- those involved are

expressing disapproval of, or objection to, something.

Fashion also allows you to challenge societal

norms, for example, Harry Styles caused a stir

on social media for wearing a dress on the cover of

Vogue, sparking a generational discussion on toxic

masculinity.

As well as, the recent unlawful killings of black

citizens of the USA, George Floyd and Breanna

Taylor, and the Me-too movement brought to light

by the Harvey Weinstein sexual offenses, are two

examples of movements that have influenced

protest dressing. With sports teams such as Manchester

United and the Los Angeles Lakers seen

supporting t-shirts with the slogans ‘Black Lives

Matter’ and ‘Say Their Names’.

However, fashion doesn’t always show support to

the oppressed, but also the oppressor. For instance,

in the 1980s, the aesthetics of skinhead

culture dominated fashion: Fred Perry polo tops

were adopted by the far-right, similarly, contemporary

groups like the 2016 neo-fascist organisation,

Proud Boys, has adopted Fred Perry’s black and

yellow polo top as a type of uniform which signifies

their abhorrent political ideologies, and Donald

Trump’s infamous red ‘MAGA’ (Make America

Great Again) hat.

Believe it or not, fashion is one of the leading

political influences, with it being a medium that

goes across multiple generations and reaches an

extremely wide audience, giving people a way to

voice their opinions- not only through their words,

but the way they dress.

12


How a student run campaign made the

Government perform yet another U-turn.

This campaign, focused on preventing cuts to free/

discounted travel for under 18 year olds. Since this

act came into play in 2005, children/young people

have been able to travel around London for free or

discounted prices. Meaning those who are disadvantaged/

struggling to even put a meal on the

table, would see this as a colossal disaster. With

37% of children in London recorded to be living in

poverty (around 700,000 individuals),

Meaning that, they will not only have to pay more

for travel, but may also be restricted to the local

area. Therefore, affecting their ability of attending

school, colleges, work and different appointment’s

(healthcare, job opportunities, etc), which may

lead to a long term rise in crime within the capitol,

as people will still need money, but won’t have the

facilities or qualifications to go about this.

This announcement comes as part of the COV-

ID-19 bailout package for Transport For London,

with the Government believing this will stop overcrowded

transport in time for schools the reopening

in September.

According to an initial estimate from London Councils,

the suspension would cost parents more than

£80 million per year (£37 million for parents of

children who will have to pay for home-to-school

transport, £2 million for young people who are apprentices

or not in education or employment.

This act triggered a group of students who have all

been affected by this, to create a campaign called

‘Don’t Zip The Zap’. ‘Don’t Zip The Zap’ allowed

young people to voice the impact that the free/discounted

travel has had on them, through surveys,

online Voxpops, etc. 79% of those surveyed said

that their Zip card is ‘very important’ and 74% saying

they use theirs to get to school or college.

13

Here are some of the responses they got regarding

how free travel has personally helped young people

(off of their Instagram account):

“Always having the option of a night bus home instead

of being stranded”.

“There’s so much free stuff to do in London, especially

for people struggling with mental health

and the free travel allows us to get to them, without

added worry. ”

“Free travel got me to multiple job interviews, which

got me my current job.”

“It has allowed me to get to and from school safely,

as I would have to walk through alleyways that as a

young girl wouldn’t feel comfortable going.”

After becoming a part of the ‘Don’t Zap The Zip’

campaign group, a student named Liv took it upon

herself to set up a campaign page on the Parliament

petitions website. Called ‘Scrap removal of

free transport for under 18s from TFL bailout’. This

campaign received 170,946 signatures and was

therefore debated in Parliament. Leading to the

tweet from the Mayor of London on the 1st November

2020, revealing that their campaign had been

successful and free/discounted transport is still

available. The tweet read,

“They reached a deal with the Government to

keep our transport running. Meaning:

Free travel for under-18s is protected.

Congestion Charge Zone will not be extended.

TFL fares won’t increase by more than what’s

already agreed.

He even mentioned the campaign in a separate

tweet reading,

“I want to highlight the incredible campaign run

by young Londoners to save free/discounted

travel for under-18s. Your commitment and enthusiasm

to this cause is a constant source of

inspiration for me. This moment is yours.

#Don’tZapTheZip.



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