In our day and age, finding something that is completely authentic can be a lot harder than you might want to think about. It’s an unfortunate reaction to simply having too many options out there to choose from. It creates a comfort to the point where we can turn our brains off and simply focus on what works best for us. Without actually, of course, knowing what’s best for us. So, how do we get rid of that laziness? How can we start buying more consciously? Why is it even important to do this? You’re about to find out.
What is a conscious consumer?
A conscious consumer, in a nutshell, is someone who looks beyond the label. They are people who will want to know more about the company from which they are buying their purchases. After all, there is always a company motive to think about. When you purchase something from a company, you are, essentially, funding a company to continue doing what they’re doing. So, do you like what they’re doing? You need to do your research and find out.
When you opt to be a conscious consumer, you are putting yourself in the driver’s seat of making a decision for which brand(s) you choose to support. It’s about keeping your mind engaged and making sure that you understand just what you are choosing to support or not support.
Though it seems simple enough, doing that “homework” before you buy from a certain business or brand is not always as easy as it should be, and it takes effort to do it right. So, why does it matter at all?
Why should we become conscious consumers?
Maybe it sounds like extra work , or it throws a wrench in your plans to go out there and simply support the cheapest company. It’s certainly easy to do, and it’s great for your pocket. So, why in the world is it important to do this right? Why does it matter? Why should we let it change the way we support our favorite brands?
· It puts money in the pockets of the authentic companies:
There are companies out there that are all about supporting proper sourcing and proper human rights. Or to put it another way, there are companies out there that do the right thing even when no one is looking. When there’s a cheaper but morally questionable way to do it. Those, even without knowing what they charge, are the companies that you want to support, right? Exactly.
· It helps put a stop to child labour and human rights violations:
The reasons that some companies and brands are able to charge the low prices they do are not ones that you want to know about. Which is precisely why they keep them under wraps. These can include child labour or human rights violations all around the world. The cheaper they are to market, they are to sell. So a lot of times, the cheapest brand is not a good idea.
(Link: Ethical Fashion)
· You are the one taking action to not to be the victim:
Eventually, it’s about our health and the place we’re living. It sounds very cliché but it’s true. The truth is we are not living in a utopia, we are living in a money driven world with lots of ugly truths behind the food we eat and the products we use. Do you know how many products right now in your house are toxic or somehow cause you sickness and allergies? …and the bigger question is are you aware that this isn’t a common phenomenon? If you’re facing this, there might be some unsafe substances being used in these products manufactured by unethical businesses that couldn’t be less concerned about your health.
How do we become conscious consumers?
· Look online:
The online world is amazing and can often tell you when something is off about a company in terms of having any skeletons in their closets. Don’t be afraid to dive deep in the research and really looking into them if they’re a company you know you’ll want to use long-term. In case you’re feeling lost, a good place to start is the the Good World Shopper -a guide which rates companies for their social and environmental impact.
· Search for tags or labels telling of ethical sourcing:
A lot of companies understand that ethical sourcing — that is, commercial production without slave/child labor — is important to the modern customer. So, always look for the proof that will tell you one way or the other. If there is no tag, it’s a good bet right there that the sourcing is questionable.
· Use your gut:
Sure, your gut isn’t exactly scientific evidence, but if your gut is telling you something isn’t so good about the company you’re considering, put the product down, go home and do your research, then decide how you want to proceed.
· Buy local, talk to business owners:
It’s not that easy to track every part of the food and products you are buying. Even those labeled as organic, eco-friendly or sustainable products sometimes aren’t 100% guaranteed to be so. Try to buy directly from local producers and small businesses. Why? Because you get the chance to directly talk to the business owners, and a higher chance to find out more about the products you’re buying. Those business owners who care about whether their products contribute to something good in society tend to be happy to share things with their customers.
Being a conscious consumer puts you on the right path to contribute in changing the world in a practical and meaningful way. So, don’t shy away from it. Embrace the power and make it work for you for a better world, one purchase at a time.
Naturehub here is not just providing you information and tools to buy consciously, but also giving you more ideas about how to truly live consciously and be the influencers in your own communities.
Join the budding community of conscious consumers right now and help save the planet! The NatureHub Conscious Community app is now available on both Google Play Store and iOS App Store. Download here.