Like millions of people in our world, I used to see only the price on the tag. I would scour racks upon racks at the mall looking for a good deal. I had more clothing in my closet then I could ever possibly even wear. I could probably go a solid three months without having to do a single load of laundry. I was constantly looking for fulfillment through consumerism.
I knew something had to change and I was excited about the idea of downsizing and creating the perfect minimalist wardrobe, but I wasn’t about to give up cheap clothing. That is until I saw the move The True Cost. This movie changed my life. It changed the way I look at fashion and consumerism and made me wake up to the reality of shopping at stores like H&M, Forever 21, and Old Navy. I no longer only see the price on the tag, but the true impact that fast fashion has on garment workers and the environment.
Now, I want to help inspire a movement of conscientious consumerism and to create a space to celebrate some of my personal ethical, sustainable, fashionable, and affordable favorites. Who else is sick of seeing Instagram accounts filled with pretty girls pushing products made in China by clothing companies who treat their factory workers like scum and wreak havoc on our environment? Raise your hand up high because together we can change the world in a small, but great way all while still having fun with fashion.
4 Quick Tips For Shopping Ethically
- Do research. When you’re browsing a website scroll to the very bottom of the page. Click on the About section and read about the company’s mission. What are they doing for the planet, their workers, their customers?
- Key words to look for: Environmental, Fair Trade, Sustainable, Ethical, Transparent. Don’t be fooled by companies who use common rhetoric like Goals, Future, By 2020 (…that’s 4 years away, I want to know what you’re doing now!) These companies are trying to look good to the public, but aren’t really putting in much effort to change today.
- Don’t be an impulse shopper. Before making an impulse buy, give yourself a day or two to decide, “do I really need this?” Often times the desire to purchase something will pass and you may even realize the item you thought you needed so badly you already had lying around.
- Download a free App on your phone like the Poshmark app (my favorite!) You can shop all your favorite brands used, at discounted prices. Often times you can even find clothing that is new with the tags (NWT) or new without tags (NWOT). This way, you’re not contributing to the making of new clothing, but rather recycling what would be thrown or given away.