Life is all about making ethical choices. And believe it or not, beauty and fashion is an industry ripe for questionable ethics. There is something we can all do about this now, in the modern age. Whether you are just out of college, or you’re looking for a way to give back to society, there are simple ways for us all to contribute, and you can do this in your fashion choices. How can we do this?
Buying items locally isn’t just convenient, but it’s beneficial for the local economy. Spending your money on investing in clothing and furniture with local businesses, and you are not just helping them to thrive, but you’re giving back to those around you. Shopping locally also gives you the opportunity to find items that aren’t typically sold in high street retailers. This gives you a better chance to find quirkier items and clothing that is so left of center that you will stand out a mile – in a good way! Buying local items also involves less packaging, cutting down on plastic waste. Many governments are encouraging customers to bring reusable bags when they go shopping, and this is one of most important things for you to do when heading out to the shops.
Pick Your Companies
It’s a big draw for many people now, buying items from a supplier that is doing their utmost for the benefit of the planet. It’s not just clothes that fall under an ethical practices and exploitation. Even when purchasing something as seemingly innocent as wooden furniture, there could be illegal timber in the product. Because there’s such a demand in the western world for cheap furniture, this has had a massive impact on deforestation in countries like Thailand and Cambodia. The businesses that do their best to trade ethically will promote themselves accordingly as being environmentally friendly and supporting fair trade. Of course, these items will always cost a bit more, but it’s for the benefit of the planet. So, pick your companies carefully.
Do Your Research
While many businesses pride themselves on their ethical and environmental standpoints, it’s always advisable that you undertake your own education so you know exactly what you are buying. I t’s always beneficial to sort out the origin of the materials, and this can involve a bit of digging, but it’s usually stated clearly on the retailer’s website. If not, you are within your rights as a consumer to go and ask! It’s not just clothing that can be ethically sourced, this natural mattress is made from eco-friendly materials, and it makes you think about what else you’ve got in your home that hasn’t been sourced through an ethical channel. After a while, the realization dawns on us that so many things we use everyday hasn’t been obtained through ethical means. It’s at this point where you start to consider your own approach to buying all of your items through reputable suppliers. After a while, once you found a few suppliers that suit your own beliefs, you can continue to go back to those retailers. A few popular ethical retailers include People Tree, Know The Origin, and Annie Greenabelle. Use these three as a springboard towards other ethical retailers and spread the word!
Living A Fashionable Lifestyle Ethically
Living a fashionable lifestyle in an ethical manner is, firstly, about living a lifestyle in an ethical manner. Choosing your retailers is one piece of the puzzle, but there are things you can do personally to improve on every aspect of your ethical being. Choosing appropriate retailers, like People Tree, is a great way to get fashionable clothing, but also, think about your accessories. From your handbags to your flowers at home. Something like flowers are flown in from overseas, which can have a massive impact on your carbon footprint. For example, red roses on Valentine’s Day are flown over from countries like Zimbabwe, so why don’t you go back to shopping locally? This leads naturally on to your own day to day dealings. If you shop locally, you are cutting back on transport costs, which cuts back on the carbon footprint. So when it comes to getting around, a bicycle is a bold fashion statement that you can accessorize wonderfully. Being on trend is vital when it comes to fashion, but it also benefits those who are looking to consume in a more ethical manner. Boycotts of large organizations who devote themselves to unethical practices are commonplace, and it’s important for you to be on the ball with regards to this, so you know exactly where you should be standing. It’s a lot of work, but if you are dedicated to living an ethical lifestyle, this is the way the cookie crumbles.
Used Clothing – Yes Or No?
While we all like a bargain, purchasing used clothes throws up a lot of questions. Is it worth buying used clothes, especially if they were sourced unethically in the first place? But it can take a lot of work to restore them again. It can be a very expensive pursuit to stay on trend, and this is where extending the life of your clothes comes in handy. Repurposing your clothes helps to reduce carbon, water, and waste footprints between 5% and 10%. For this statistic alone, it’s worth going to a used clothing outlet such as a thrift store. And with thrift stores, they are dedicated to giving back. This takes a lot of the research out of the equation, so you can focus on picking the right clothes for you. This does mean that you will have to look a bit harder, but going shopping for bargains and quirky styles in this manner is more fun. Some people dedicate their Saturday to finding ethically sourced material that is stylish and was left at the bottom of a bargain bin!
Yes, making ethical fashion choices is a lot of work, but it’s all about living the ethical lifestyle. Fashion can go against the grain in this respect, but if you spend time going through the fine details and sourcing adequate retailers that meet your needs, there is no reason to not look stylish.