In light of Earth Day last week, I wanted to dedicate a post with realistic ways on how we can all be a more conscious, sustainable shopper. Oftentimes, we focus on the new and exciting things that are trending, but there is a lot more that lies underneath the surface that needs to be talked about amongst influencers and bloggers. After all, there is more to discuss than just converting to reusable bags.
I wanted to shed some light on some steps and lifestyle changes we can all collectively make in our own individual lives to leave a smaller footprint, while also still being avid lovers of fashion. Below are some really doable actions we can enact today so we can be a more sustainable fashion consumer and more mindful of the impact we have in this world.
Quality Over Quantity
Over the years, I have learned that quality is far more favorable than quantity in the long run. I do acknowledge and understand that having the means to invest in higher quality goods is truly a privilege and for that I am truly grateful. If you are given the choice, investing your hard earned money in better brands and products means the pieces you get will be more durable and lasting, thus extending that item’s product life. Cheaper clothing not only means it could be easily damaged, but it also instills that underlying mindset that it is okay to wear it once and discard or to not take the best care of it. So if you are looking to be a more conscious consumer, ensure every purchase you make is mindful in the sense that it will last you and you can continue to wear it years down the road. This is especially true for the clothing or accessories you deem wardrobe essentials as you know you will be wearing them time and time again!
Extend the Product Life Cycle
In the aforementioned tip, I mentioned a product’s life. To further be a more conscious consumer, we need to think of the repercussions of investing in that t-shirt or handbag we have been eyeing. In the end, it is okay to grow out of a style and to want to retire something in your closet. However, do not just toss it away if it is a perfectly good product! Clothing and accessories in decent to good to like-new conditions can be sold online at places like Poshmark and Depop where they will be rehomed and worn again. You may even make a small return on investment if you make a sale. If you are not keen on selling, you can always donate to your local thrift store where someone else can breathe new life into your gently loved items and further extend its product life cycle! H&M even collects clothes or textiles in store.
Switch to Air Drying
When it comes to washing your precious clothing and linens, I encourage you to skip the dryer as much as possible! Not only are you saving energy and making less of an impact on the environment, but you are also saving yourself money by lowering your energy bill – which is a plus in my book! Did you know that air drying is better for your clothes overall? It extends the lifetime by reducing any wear and tear it would experience being whipped around in the drying machine.
Pro Tip: If you are concerned about wrinkles, I recommend air drying your clothes, then tossing them into the dryer with wool dryer balls right before they’re completely dry (only about 5 mins). This greatly reduces the wrinkles in your clothes and will provide that fresh air scent!
Support Ethical Brands
When it comes down to it, the best thing we can do in terms of sustainable fashion is to support the key brands who are really making a difference. Look for those companies who are really stepping up and committing to practices like better materials, enforced ethics, and charitable donations. In the end, these companies are the ones who deserve our dollars the most!
What practices are you instilling to be more of a conscious fashion consumer?