Sometimes the fight for the planet and people can feel defeating - the numbers regarding pollutants, slave trades, poverty levels, and waste are scary. It’s easy to feel that nothing we do can make a difference in the face of large companies and corporations.
While changes won’t happen overnight or all at once, the reality is that the market follows the dollar - and ultimately we hold power as consumers. Every dollar we spend is a vote for the kind of world we want. When large groups of consumers make similar choices, it forces the market to change and adapt.
Here are 3 things you can do:
- Avoid buying products from brands that do harm - to the environment, to animals, to people. Spend some time researching online for more info about brands - there are great resources out there that list out ethical fashion and home goods companies, and entire apps that rate cleaning supplies and food items.
- Shop from companies that are serious about their commitment to their communities. Real people who follow through to make a real difference. Support them and help them help others!
- Be vocal. Encourage your friends and family to become more knowledgeable and to make changes as a consumer. You could even take orders from those in your community and place bulk orders - sometimes people just need an extra boost or a little encouragement to make a change.
We realize not everyone has the means or access to products to make complete changes as a consumer. You can only do what you’re able to do - and that’s enough. If you don’t have access to a health food store that carries fair trade brands, you can request some brands/products from your own local grocery store to see if they will begin to carry some. Shop fresh at your local farmer’s market. If you can’t afford the price tag of your favorite ethical brand, use a secondhand shopping app to try to find it at a lower price or thrift from a local store. There are options! And you truly can make a difference. To learn more about the dangers of fast fashion and what you can do, visit Fashion Revolution.
If we all make these small choices as consumers and are vocal to our friends/family/government officials/local business owners - we will shift the market. We can lower emissions, reduce waste, reduce child labor rates, strive to end human trafficking, and ensure that more and more people are paid a living wage.