A guide for the Conscious Shopper
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are almost upon us – who is not tempted to purchase (another!) pair of shoes, a smoothie maker, an iToaster or anything else at a discounted price? Black Friday and Cyber Monday are, after all, amongst the busiest shopping days especially in the in the States, with around 30% of annual retail sales occurring between this time and Christmas.
If you are a bit of an environment nut like us, you will immediately think about all the waste packaging discarded during this marketing exercise. Re-thinking how we shop seems the best way to make a change and to prompt companies to evolve towards more ethical practices.
We stick to the philosophy of the “three R’s”- Re-use, Reduce, Recycle through small gestures that, without hugely affecting our everyday life, can have a significant impact on the environment.
Don’t get us wrong – our aim is far from wanting to take the pleasure out of the festive season! That’s why we have put together a little guide for the conscious shopper.
First things first. Do you really need that?
Take a step back and don’t let your impulse take over. Often, an impulse purchase can lead to an addition to the pile of ‘used once’ items, which will potentially contribute to the amount of waste on its way to landfill. When in front of a good deal ask yourself – ‘Do I really need it?’ ‘Can I repair something I already have?’ Repairing an item can give it a new lease of life, especially if it is of good quality. As consumers we should demand better goods (whether you are into food, fashion, skincare or anything else) that allow a better life to the people who make them and that respect the environment we live in.
Is the company you’re choosing ethical?
A lot of mainstream companies are going down the ‘green path’ (see Zara’s Life collection and H&M’s Conscious line), but the number of enterprises that are still miles away from taking a conscious approach to production and distribution is shockingly high. It’s sometimes hard to find out who is genuinely ethical and who only looks ethical. We find that thorough research is the key! Start from the company website and look out for authenticity logos, connections with certified associations and press articles. Then see what’s the rumour on the street – forums, independent bloggers and social media can definitely help!
How does the packaging look?
You know that wasteful packaging is an issue that we hold close to our hearts and we do everything in our power to avoid it at all cost! Unfortunately, it’s not the case for a lot of companies out there, and sometimes it can feel a bit frustrating trying to avoid single use packaging. It’s just everywhere! Remember that making small choices that might seem slightly impractical makes a huge difference for the environment (ever tempted to get a plastic bag at the supermarket when you forget your reusables?).
Shopping consciously can seem a bit of a challenge at first, but if you get into the habit of asking yourself a few questions before making a purchase, you’ll end up making better choices for yourself and for the planet. And remember that being green is not about perfection, but about making an effort, and improving a little bit every day.
Visit our Shop for your conscious beauty shopping.