We talk a lot about being a conscious shopper and an ethical consumer. But what does that even mean? Next to voting, how you spend your money is the most powerful decision you can make.
When starting a journey towards consciously trying to make our world a better place there often seems to be a lot of judgment and feelings of ‘not doing enough’. These perceptions of ‘all or nothing’ seem to turn a lot of people off of the eco-friendly movements. This is unfortunate as being a better consumer and friend to the planet is a journey, not a destination.
For this reason, the term ‘Conscious Consumer’ feels much more accessible by all. It just means that instead of just purchasing any item without a second thought you take the time to think about what you are purchasing and its impact on the environment and other human beings.
In theory, being a conscious consumer is easy. It is not about being perfect it is about being aware and trying to make the best decision possible with the choices you are given.
Here are a few questions you can keep in mind to get you started.
Before shopping or making a purchase:
- Do I absolutely need it?
- Do I have something already that I can repurpose to fill my need?
- Can I borrow it?
Once you have established that you do in fact need to shop, the next way you can make an impact is by thinking about:
- What material is this made of?
- Did the person making this get fair wages?
- Was the environment harmed in the making of this product?
- How long will it's lifecycle (with me) will be and where will it go when I'm done with it?
- What type of impact will this have on the environment when I am done with it?
There are of course many more questions and things to think about but as we said it is a journey about being more aware of the things you purchase with your hard-earned money. It also makes a statement to brands if more ethical items and companies are more popular and creating more revenue. Once the demand increases shopping ethically will be so much easier and accessible. Which is what we are trying to do!
It is also important to remember not to judge or belittle anyone else’s journey. Every little bit helps towards making the world a better place so if your friend is vegan but uses plastic straws thats all right they are already taking a big step towards being a better friend to the planet.