Without really trying, I’ve always been a somewhat ethical consumer by shopping secondhand. It wasn’t the reason I started shopping secondhand but it makes it a lot easier to do so when I know I’m helping the environment and not supporting fast fashion. But I did something a few weeks ago I never do. I went to the mall. I don’t really know why. I was just feeling in the mood to browse (and apparently buy!). So, I went to H&M and picked up this shirt.
As much as I LOVE thrifting, it can be really nice to go into a store, find something you like, and find the correct size right away. But then the guilt starts…
I’ve seen the True Cost. I follow a lot of ethical fashion brands. I know that shopping from fast fashion is terrible not only for the environment but also for the people working in the factories making the clothes. But we aren’t perfect and I’ve slipped up lately. I am also finding it near impossible to find shoes that would fit me that are ethical.
I try not to let it bother me too much if I slip up every now and then because, in reality, I hardly ever shop retail. Sure, I’ll browse but I hardly ever purchase anything. And if I do, I make sure I wear it to death. But there is still that creeping voice in the back of my head telling me I messed up and I shouldn’t enjoy the shirt I purchased. I guess I just have to accept that I am human and I am not going to be perfect with my fashion choices 100% of the time. I’m learning that it is okay to mess up sometimes when it comes to trying to be an ethical consumer.
But sometimes if I get into this spiral about thinking about the world, I never stop. I think about how maybe I should go zero waste or I should be vegan. It becomes a cycle of me thinking I’m not doing enough. But the truth is? I am. I’m one person and I have a lot of other things to worry about and things that need to occupy my mind right now. So, if I buy a cheap shirt from H&M once and a while, I am not going to beat myself up about it.
However, it can also be really hard to be a fashion blogger and shop 90% secondhand. Most bloggers pick new things up all the time, gain income from affiliate links, and make a living out of showing new items of clothing. There has got to be another way to make my blog my living than that. I hope I’ve helped people realize you can buy so many wonderful and unique pieces secondhand. But then part of me wants to jump on the hype of affiliate links and whatnot. But I know I’ll never do that because I would never want to spend that much of my income on new clothes. But that is a post for a different day….
Do you ever feel guilty for shopping fast fashion?
Let me know in the comments!