Believe it or not, becoming an ‘Eco-citizen’ in today’s day and age is becoming very accessible. For what can seem like a difficult stance to take when shopping, Eco-friendly and stylish fashion options are becoming more available globally. Not only are more options available to consumers, but so are the disturbing facts about what fast fashion and capitalism are doing to our planet.
So how can YOU be an ethical shopper whilst maintaining your love for fashion and avoid being part of the fast-fashion trap? After reading, ‘Wear No Evil’ by Greta Eagan, I am about to offer you an adapted version of the simplest tip she has designed to help you maintain integrity and style when shopping.
It is first important to consider what your ethical values are when shopping. With style being your number 1 priority, choose 3-4 more to add to your mental list when shopping:
|Natural Fibres||Organic Fibres||Recycled/Upcycled||Vegan|
|Fair Trade Certified||Natural/Low Impact Dyes||Low water usage||Local
|Second Hand||Convertible||Slow Fashion||No Waste|
Now that you have your mental list of priorities, all you have to do is check them off when shopping. When considering if the garment is right for you, that is, supports your ethical shopping values, first think about your number 1 priority: is it stylish to me and did it catch my eye? If so, then proceed to check off your list. For example, you may also prioritise natural fibres, organic, local and charity. Check the label on the garment and ask yourself: have natural fibres been used? Is the fibre organic? Was it produced locally? Does the brand support a charity? If you can answer yes to any of your additional values, then you can consider the garment safe to purchase! Here’s an graphic algorithm for the example ethical list rule:
You may like to start off by ticking one extra value off your ethical checklist and then, as you become more accustomed to shopping ethically, maximise the rule to at least two or three extra values. Regardless, if you apply the rule to all your purchases, you can consider yourself someone who shops with integrity! Then, the more values you can check off, the more ethically conscious you are as a consumer.
Give it a try! Post your ethical checklist in the comments.