2017 was my ethical fashion year; 2017 was the year I vowed not to buy one single item of clothing unless it’s absolutely necessary or if it was responsibility produced. I wanted a retail purge for a year.
I would be lying if I said it wasn’t hard especially when wonderful sale emails, special discounts rolled in my inbox. That’s also when I realized to be successful in my new fashion endeavors I must unsubscribe to all of those marketing temptations.
It took me some courage, but in a few hours, I transformed my inbox from fashion porn to business focus land.
I also unsubscribed to those fashion magazines that always gives me the urge to swipe my plastic left and right!
Chances are, you are trying to do the same thing and wonder where to start and how to do it!
Don’t worry, I have got your back! Beleive me, buying ethical fashion is more within your reach than you think! Purging your buying urges can be more fun than you think with a bit of practice and discipline! All that without feeling deprived!
First thing first!
Before embarking on this ethical fashion journey, make sure you have a clear picture of what you’re trying to achieve. By doing so, you can plan ahead and strategize. It’s also important that you know your bottom line and the reasons why you are doing this!
Check out more ethical fashion article like this one:
Find your why
- Are you trying to be financially more responsible?
- Maybe you are trying to be environmentally more responsible?
- Are you embarking on a minimalism journey?
Whatever your reasons are, write them down somewhere you can see it each time you are tempted to go on a crazy shopping spree! Oh, I know how the pull from these semi-annual sales from Victoria’s secret or the heavy discounts from Nordstrom can be strong!
Now you know why you want to be ethical on your fashion journey, you need to know how you are going to go about it.
Do you plan on stopping buying all together?
Are you planning on slowly incorporate ethical buy into your wardrobe?
What is your budget?
Where are you going to buy?
Do you plan for a capsule wardrobe?
How many times a year are you planning on shopping, the occasions?
There are so many more questions you need to ask yourself.
I find it best practice to set up a monthly or quarterly review of your goals, the progress, and make any adjustment necessary.
For example, when I set my goals in December 2016, I had a standard corporate 9-5 job, in April 2017 I transitioned into freelancing, working from home.
I no longer needed to be in suits, heels are now optional. Heck ! even clothes are optional!
I had to make adjustments, review my goals, and my budget.
The need to buy a white dress shirt every other month is long forgotten! ( I spilled coffee on them 8 times out 10). Call me Grace! haha!
It’s safe to say you will need to re-evaluate your style or lifestyle. In a span of 6 months, I went from wearing heels every day to wearing them once a week.
Now that you have all these factors to consider, It’s best practice you have your go to places to buy ( if you decide to buy at all) and when.
I used to shop -or attempted to do so- every single sale that crossed my inbox. My bank account was not a happy camper!
I am proud to say, I only shopped twice in 2017. Once was sort of a moment of weakness for this amazing trench coat I wanted from Everlane, the other for some winter layering pieces.
The second shopping trip was either thrifted or heavily discounted.
These are my go-to places for ethical fashion with vegan options:
- LoveJustly is the kind of place you want to check out when you are looking to freshen up your wardrobe without giving up your kidney! They have great pieces at affordable prices.
Check out their mission statement:
“Every time you spend money, you’re casting a vote for the kind of world you want.”
Discounted Ethical Fashion
Love Justly makes buying ethical fashion affordable. When you purchase anything from Love Justly (e.g. handmade jewelry, a clutch purse, a handcrafted shirt, or a dress), you’re not only buying something you’ll love, but you’re also helping to provide hope, dignified employment, and a better life for artisans around the world.
- The local thrift store
If you are able to, check out your local thrift store before buying or paying full price for anything. Not only you will save money, but It’s a good way to recycle, repurpose!
Some of my favorite pieces are thrifted.
- Shop the sales
I am not above browsing the sales and clearance section even at the thrift store. In fact, that’s my first stop before considering anything else at my favorite ethical online shop, or in store. I am all for the frugal life!
If you are a techie like me, it’s safe to say you love a good, useful, and super handy apps. Oh boy, I have a ton of those!
The good on you app is one stop shop for articles, recommendations, and all sort of ethical stores. They range from sweatshop-free stores and hardcore vegan.
You have to check it out! It’s like a gigantic ethical mall in your pocket! How cool is that!
Whatever the reasons you choose to buy ethical fashion, I hope this article was somewhat useful to you! I would highly appreciate it if you could share any recommendations! I am always looking for a bargain!
I’d love to hear why you have decided to buy more sustainable in the comments!