When hearing the word “conscious consumption”, most of you think it has the same meaning as sustainability and social responsibility. However, they have different terminology and measured definitions. Conscious consumption has 3 main key terms: buy/buycott, positive purchasing, and purpose. It is the movement when you are consciously aware of what you buy to create a positive impact not only for you but also for all factors behind and after the product line.
Who is a conscious consumer?
Everyone could be a conscious consumer, and YOU can be one of them. A conscious consumer always considers 3 things before they purchase a product:
Is it worth it and safe to buy for me?
Is it harming the planet and respecting all the producers?
How does the product positively impact society?
They want to be one of the solutions and seek transparency from the brand. Most of the companies overproduce without concerning both workers and environmental aspects. This led to the issue of underpaid labour, toxic waste, and climate change. We as a consumer have the power to change this (ecosystem) through the choice that we make when buying a product that matches our values.
Once you begin to educate yourself on conscious consumerism, you will begin to understand how the cheapest price is rarely the fair one - Grebekah Hilderbrandt
How to be a conscious consumer
“ I’m planning to try to be a conscious consumer; how do I start? Does it require a lot of money? “
Trimin gets those questions quite often when I encourage my relatives or friend to be conscious consumer. Ok, First of all, being a conscious consumer is not about perfection. There is no strict rule or guideline that you have to follow, and you can start it with a small step while doing what you do in daily life. Let’s discover 5 things you can to start being a conscious consumer!
Check your daily consumption and shopping list
Review your weekly/monthly expenses in your shopping list or bank statement to discover which brand you regularly shop for and search the product brand you buy. You can start checking your favourite brand on Good On You to see the company product details such as labour conditions, material sourcing, and waste management. Additionally, you can re-adjust your shopping list that focuses only on the product you need rather than a want. Trimin has a tip for you; you can buy a product that you need for 80% and the rest for your psychological needs (e.g buy a cute spoon to boost your mood).
Read the label
Start to check the label and ingredients of every product you are going to buy. You have to be careful with the terms “natural or safe” because it doesn’t guarantee that the company produces the product safely for the environment. You can check deeper your product brand detail on their website or B Lab’s directory to browse green-certified companies.
Buy for quality and Shop Secondhand
When we see a cheap product on the market, our mindset often changes and as a human we instinctively love to search for the lowest price. I am not saying you can’t buy a cheap product; however, you have to determine its quality. You have to make sure that the product is long-lasting and timeless so you can minimize your waste by not buying a product quite often.
Secondly, buy secondhand. In this era, thrifting is becoming a new trend that creates a positive impact on the environment. If you buy a secondhand t-shirt, you have successfully saved 2700 litre (WWF, 2017), isn’t it amazing? You can also save your money because usually, the secondhand product is a lot cheaper compared to the new. So what are you waiting for? Start shop secondhand now!
Always be curious before you buy something, either a food or a fashion item. The three questions above are the example, or you can start examining these 3 things:
Do I really need this? Do I have this at home?
Can I borrow/rent it?
Is there any pre-loved / eco-friendly option available?
By questioning these three aspects, you will begin to understand how a product can contribute a different impact not only on yourself but also on the environment.
Support Conscious Brand
Who’s here loves to shop at small/local stores over the big corporation? Trimin sure that you at least have purchased a product from a local store. It’s a plus point for you!!
Do you know that shopping for small businesses is likely to implement sustainable practices? Yes, they are. They tend to produce small quantities of products that use less energy and resources, which means less pollution and waste.
Trimin encourages you to support a local business and a specific brand that is conscious about its impact. For example, here in Tri Upcycle, we are concerned about the environmental issue that we created as a fashion brand. Therefore, we are trying to minimize the waste that we produce and focus on what value we can give to you, our stakeholders, and the environment. We make our product with unused bed linen from various Bali hotels, and we plant a tree from one product sold. If you are curious about our product, please check this link.
Once you start to educate yourself on conscious consumption, you will begin to realize how much gratitude you have shared for yourself, society, and the environment. It’s not easy to start all the 5 steps at once, but you may begin it with small steps. Remember, either big or small things you do can create a difference.
at least have bought a rpttps://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/01/smarter-living/sustainabile-shopping-conscious-consumer.html