Why Is It So Hard To Shop Sustainably?
At this point if you're interested in sustainable fashion or pride yourself on wanting to shop in places that have aim to minimise their negative environmental and social impacts, you know that there are a sustainable fashion brand out there.
So why is it that we find it hard stock up our wardrobes with these sustainable options?
If you're anything like me, you're probably wish that after seeing a post by some of your favourite sustainable brands (yes, Im talking to you Reformation and Edun!) that the clothes could magically appear in your wardrobe but unfortunately this isn't the case (because magic isn't real :_( ).
For me, it's tough because as much as I support the steps that the fashion industry is taking towards becoming green (big or small), the thing is a lot of sustainable brands that I absolutely love don't have the friendliest of price points.
This isn't to say that Im expecting these brands to drop their prices, I know that that with sustainability efforts comes more expenses. It IS more expensive to fairly pay all workers, it IS more expensive to source organic materials, it IS more expensive to ethically source materials and it is more challenging to work with materials that aren't conventionally used. It is just that as a recent graduate, still finding my feet and aiming to promote sustainability it sucks pretty hard because it feels like I'm unable to fully practice what you preach.
So in order not to be a complete debbie downer, I've listed my top 3 cost friendly (-ish) methods that promote a sustainable lifestyle without being too tough on your purse strings.
1. Go vintage!!
Years ago vintage was a huge trend. Every since the likes of Kate Moss and Cara Delevingne said that they found some of their favourite items in their location charity shops, everyone jumped on the trend! As much as we don't promote buying something just because it's the 'in' thing shopping vintage has a=some amazing benefits! Not only do you get the chance to give some pretty cool clothes a new home but you can also put your money towards a good cause by supporting your local charity shops that often donate to chosen charities. This isn't limited to charity shops either, your family's closets aren't off limits either!
2. Shop smart
We've all gone through it when we're scrolling online and come across an item that we absolutely love but know deep down that we probably won't wear more than once. This is especially easy when browsing fast fashion websites because the items are soon affordable but (try!) STOP! Rather than getting a bunch of clothes that won't last very long either due to poor quality or because they were part of a fad trend, save up that money and invest in a quality item that you know you can wear on multiple occasions.
3. Scour the internet!
So, vintage shopping just doesn't cut it and you don't think that shopping smart is the best option for you - what now? Well, chances are that online stores like eBay or Depop have users ready to give their clothes a new home. You'll be surprised how easily you can fin items from Reformation or Edun on online sales sites, this way you get wear your favourite brand without spending too much!
My hope is that as sustainability becomes more mainstream in fashion, the prices will become more affordable but chances are that will sustainability always remain a sort of luxury niche-ish market. I hope that sustainable fashion does become more widespread but if we ever reach the point where sustainable fashion is so easily accessible that you can buy sustainable clothing off the racks as the norm without even thinking about it, has something gone wrong somewhere? If such items are able to be mass produced on that scale that does drive prices down, does it mean that somewhere along the line brands would have had to stray away from ethical values because surely this degree of mass production veers into the territory of fast fashion?
Is a more likely alternative that as more brands adopt sustainable practices their price points will decrease? So, many what we are looking at for the future isn't necessary for a sustainable lifestyle to become as widespread as fast fashion BUT for it to become affordable enough thy people actively choose to make the right choice.
I would love to hear you guy's thoughts on this so please do leave a comment below or comment on our instagram or twitter @somadinablog