Shopping with sustainability in mind is harder than I thought it would be. I will admit to having mild anxiety about accidentally purchasing something that isn’t sustainable as well as using my Victoria’s Secret, and other retailer, gift cards I got over the holidays. Am I allowed to use them because the money has technically already been spent? AND that money was spent in 2017, which was before I began this shift in my fashion beliefs?
I. DON’T. KNOW.
The three words above are literally the most terrifying words for me to speak, or type. I have always been the one with all the answers and not having them is basically like walking naked into the Arctic in the dead of winter. It causes a trigger to my anxiety and if that trigger is pushed just far enough, the negative self-talk begins. This may seem like I am “making a big deal over nothing” but no one has had to listen to that voice but me. She is a straight-up bitch. I have never thought, let alone spoken, anything that cruel to a living being except, apparently, when it comes to myself. And she has been stirring around every time I walk by the clothing department of a store.
She can be helpful, if I don’t read too far into what she says. For example: I love me some Target. I got that basic, white-girl fever for Target. I just can’t help it. I love that place and I am instantly happier when I walk inside. However, those big red SALE signs from the clothing department have been drawing me in with their siren song. Those signs paired with the roll out of swimwear (Oh Lord! Is it summer yet?!) have proven so tempting that I am avoiding Target.
Feeling two parts crazy and one part slightly empowered, I wondered: Am I the only one who is plagued by hard (mental) work that is staying sustainable? Then, while on IG, I came across this beautiful post the other day:
It reads: Ladies…I have to admit something. I broke my resolution. My goal was to shop strictly slow fashion all year long. I was cold, out of town, it was late, and bought some layering pieces at Target out of convenience. And guess what, it’s been EATING ME UP INSIDE. How can someone who claims to be a leader in the sustainable fashion revolution and who publicly made a commitment just do this? But you know what, I’m not perfect. The truth is the world makes it REALLY hard to shop ethically and sustainably, and that sucks! You don’t need to beat yourself up, what really matters is that we are more conscious of where our money goes and do what we can to fund a better future. ..
I’m going to stop right there and begin my slow clap. HOLY. BANANAS. I felt like I was living on my own little island of nerves, but seeing this helped me to understand that being mindful is where we need to begin. Jumping in head first is not typically the easiest way to do things and missteps happen as we learn. That is HOW we learn. So basically, I need to take the advice of both Dani and myself when talking to my students – mistakes suck, but that’s how we learn. As well as, search for help when you need it.
Help is out there!
I also came across the lovely tool that is the Good on You App. This app is so awesome as it rates a brand based on three principles: environmental impact, labor conditions, and animal welfare. Each of these principles has it’s own rating, but the app puts together the three in order to give the brand a rating out of 5 points. They have over 1,000 brands rated and have a deals section that shows brand that are rated either “good” or “great” who have deals available.
Info from their desktop version site is here
As soon as I have explored the app a little more I will update y’all on how it works/if I am digging it.
BONUS: American Apparel Try-on
If you have made it through this entire post. I just want to let you know that Monday, I was having kind of a day. I also received my first “eco friendly” purchase. Long story short: not a very eco friendly choice and it all looked like it was made for infants or people with no skin or rolls or who have recently eaten. If you would like to see what I am like in video form, please check out my ridiculous Instagram story. I have added it to my Saved Stories so check that out if you need a laugh. PSA: I say some choice words; you’ve been warned.