September 2, 2019 | By: Jennifer Sims
Conscious Consumerism: Everything You Need To Know
While conscious consumerism may appear at first glance to be a complex concept, it’s actually quite simple. Being a conscious consumer simply means that as a buyer, you look past what meets the eye. Nowadays, most shoppers tend to be very surface level with both their wants and their needs as they browse local stores. Conscious consumerism digs a little deeper when it comes to what a product is made of, and more importantly who is producing it. It challenges the everyday buyer to think about the impact of each purchase they make. Below are a few tips you can put into practice to embrace conscious consumerism in your life.
Check the Label
Always try and look for signs on the label or tag of what you purchase that indicate the item was made under fair labour laws. This will significantly lessen your contribution to mass-producing corporations who don’t offer workers fair pay.
Communicate with Companies
Have a favourite brand you don’t want to stop buying from? Take the time to do your due-diligence and communicate with that company ways they can reduce their environmental footprint. Whether you encourage them to go green with their packaging or to offer more sustainable products, don’t be afraid to reach out to them via email or phone call.
A huge part of being a more conscious consumer is taking the time to do your research. Look for companies that are cruelty-free, vegan, or are dedicated to fair trade. There are many resourceful sustainability databases online to search from that will give you a better idea of where to start and where to shop.
Doing your part to buy locally grown food will lessen your contribution to the harmful gas emissions linked to outsourced produce and meat. Lower your carbon footprint by buying items made or grown within a 50 mile radius of your home.
Instead of purchasing items that you may only need for one or two uses, a great way to consume more consciously is by asking to borrow these items from friends and family. From asking your in-laws to loan out their weed wacker for your summer landscaping to linking up with other moms to swap old school books, borrowing is the perfect way to avoid unnecessary spending.
A lesser known fact you may overlook when you go thrifting is that shopping secondhand is, in fact, conscious consumerism at its finest. Believe it or not, buying items that have been gently used by previous owners is a great way to prevent them from ending up in landfills that harm our planet. From local consignment shops to larger online retailers like thredUP, choosing used has never been easier.
Buy as a Last Resort
Lastly, the number one rule you should try and stick to as a conscious consumer is always making buying new a last resort. Try to utilize what you already have, borrow what you won’t use often, and look for used options whenever possible. Though you may have to make some life changes when it comes to your purchasing habits along the way, being a more conscious consumer might just end up saving both your bank account and our planet at the same time.