Have you heard of the term conscious consumer? Ever wonder what it actually means and if it’s truly attainable? According to repurpose.global, a conscious consumer is someone who “makes the purchase decisions based much beyond what is printed on the bottle.“
You see, when it comes to the things that we buy and purchase there is often an economic and environmental impact that we may not be aware of as we are making a purchase.
Being a conscious consumer is being somebody who chooses to look beyond the label.
It comes down to thinking about:
What do they stand for?
Who funds the company?
Are the chemical in their dyes toxic?
how they dispose of their ”waste?”
How are their employees treated?
Is it an ethical brand?
THE HARD TRUTH:
It may feel like a lot to think about, especially when it comes to making a simple purchase. However, when it comes to buying fast fashion or cheaply made products,
"Fast fashion is ranked as second for the worlds largest polluter."
The article details how almost 60% of clothing ends up in landfills or incinerators within the year that they were made. It also explains how the fast fashion industry “emits 1,200,000,000 tons of CO2 per year which is more than the emissions created by air travel and international shipping.“
That means that there is an insane amount of pollution caused annually by clothing alone, and it is increasing at an alarming rate
UNETHICAL WORKING CONDITIONS:
Another huge issue lies in the fact that the more demand for items, the more employees have to work to meet a specific quota or deadline.
Unfortunately, large corporations generally overlook the safety and comfort of their employees due to the high demand for trendy clothing. Employees are often forced to work long hours under extremely uncomfortable conditions to meet their quota. Children are still being forced to make clothing too.
There is a harsh reality on the other side of fast fashion. Ethical consumerism is one of the most impactful ways to protest the mistreatment of employees. The exploitation of workers for big corporations is a massive reason in why it matters to be mindful with our purchases.
SO WHAT CAN WE DO?
There are so many ways to be an ally for the planet and for people! The best way to show up is to practice mindfulness in your habits. To be conscious of any unethical practices that you are directly or indirectly supporting.
When you support local, you make a huge positive impact within your community, even it's just a small purchase or two every week.
1. You know where you were buying your product from
2. You know where the product is made
3.You are supporting small businesses versus supporting a giant corporation.
Paying attention to these things helps us create a more positive impact on our environment. It gives us our power back as consumers because you are decisively aware of where your money is going. You are supporting brands that are authentic and that are working to make a positive impact in the world.
Doing research before purchasing items from a company is also incredibly helpful. The beauty of technology is that there are various resources to teach you how to become a conscious consumer.
All it takes is a quick search and a little bit of research to see if the companies that you currently support or that you have bought items from or an ethical company and if they are being funded by an ethical company/bank/corporation.
When we take our power back as consumers we share the love & support with businesses that put their heart and soul into their mission to try to create a more positive impact in the world.
When we shift the focus from “What can this do for me?” to “What is this doing to our environment?” we will begin to see more sustainable changes making way in the way we do things.