How to Shop Sustainably

 
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It may still feel like summer in Georgia, but soon enough, we’ll be adjusting our wardrobes for cooler temperatures. Whether you’re fan of fashion or just keeping yourself covered, it’s important to make choices that protect our environment. Read on to see how you can be an earth-conscious consumer!   

1.  Reconsider Your Actual Needs

Before you set foot in any store, ask yourself if you really need to be shopping in the first place. Can you borrow from a friend or family member, or switch up what you already own by pairing items differently? If you’d like to alter your closet in a big way, consider participating in a clothing swap. You can create an event out of it by hosting one with your friends, or visit a site online like Rehash where you can post photos and descriptions of your old clothes to trade with other users.

2. Shop Secondhand

Another great way to reduce waste is to head to your local thrift store, vintage shop, or consignment boutique. Your wallet will thank you along with the earth, and you’ll definitely have an easier time finding unique pieces this way. Why follow the crowd? Garage sales are fair game here too, and if you don’t know of any resources in your immediate community, you’ll find solid options online. Try ThredUP or Etsy if you need to go digital.

3. Do Your Research

We know it’s not always possible to avoid buying new. When you do head down that road, remember to look for eco-friendly brands and materials. They might be more expensive—after all, they’re selling high-quality fabrics that will last longer—but if you follow our first two tips, the bulk of your wardrobe will come from thrifting or swapping anyway. You can use the money you’ve saved to splurge on a few new pieces that you can wear forever and feel good about.

4. Don’t Throw Old Items in the Trash

This is a big one. When you go through your closet and inevitably find pieces you no longer want or need, avoid tossing them in the dumpster. You have so many alternative options: you can bring them to a thrift store or donate them to charity. You can lend them to a friend or family in need. Somebody elsewhere can definitely reuse them, and we recommend you keep your local tailor in mind too: they can mend items you still love but have worn a bit too much!

5. Think Hard About Every Purchase

How many of us have excitedly brought home a new shirt or pair of pants only to wear it sparingly? Or even not at all? Sometimes, we make poor choices in the moment, so remember to take your time before handing over that hard-earned cash. Does the item you’re considering fit well? Does it match your other pieces? Do you see yourself using it again and again? If you can’t decide, you can always come back to purchase it later. Just set it aside if you think someone else might swoop in before you return.