All of July and most of August I did not shop at all (When I talk about shopping I’m referring to clothes. I obviously still need to buy necessities like groceries, etc.). I wanted to work with my current wardrobe and try different outfits using only what I already have. It was a way for me to learn to make the most of my closet and try to stop binge shopping like I used to.
But last week I had a couple of days off and decided to head out to a mall. I went with my sisters with the intention of just looking around and testing out my resistance to binge shopping. I will admit it was hard and I got headache from having to think so hard about every item that I looked at or picked up. I had to fight back so many urges to just throw everything I loved into my arms and carry it over to the cash register.
But one simple and beautiful thing stopped me from doing that. And that was stopping and questioning everything. Instead of mindlessly shopping like I used to and knowingly (but also unknowingly) supporting fast fashion companies, I decided to think a little beyond just the clothing before I made an actual purchase.
Here are 5 questions that you can ask yourself the next time you shop, so you can make more conscious shopping decisions:
Who made this?
Look at the tags and see where the product is made. More than likely you’ll see a lot of tags with Made in China, India or Bangladesh. This is a simple question that holds a lot of power. Knowing where your clothes are coming from and realizing who has made them, can jumpstart a series of questions that will make you better question your purchases.
Is it a fair price?
People always think that a price can tell a lot about a product, but this isn’t always the case. Traditional retailers mark up their prices a lot compared to how much it actually costs to make the product from the beginning of the supply chain. So before you make a purchase, do your research on the company and find out where they produce their garments and source their materials. Look online or ask in person at the store. Understand the true value of the garment, outside of just the brand name.
Do I really need this?
More than often when you go shopping you end up picking up stuff without really thinking if you need it. This results in duplicates in your wardrobe and pieces that you never get around to wearing. Before buying something think about if you’ll truly wear it and if you can style it up to 10 different ways. Beat those impulse shopping habits by taking a step back before purchasing and asking yourself if you really need this.
Can I wear it more than 30 times?
When making a purchase look at the product carefully. Assess the materials, fabric and seams. Think how often you’ll wear the garment and if you can wear until the end of season, as well as incorporate into other seasons. Buy with the purpose of wearing it for years to come, instead of just a couple of months before deciding to throw it away.
Is this a durable product?
A consciously curated wardrobe is comprised of long-lasting clothing. If you feel like something will only last a couple of wears, skip out on buying it and save the couple of bucks for something made of better quality. Your wardrobe and wallet will thank you. Quality over quantity always!