How Does Psychology and Consumerism Affect The Topic Of Sustainability?
Psychology has such an impact on sustainability as it feeds into what we buy, why we buy it and the ultimate drive to our purchasing choices. There is a reason we feel compelled to consume, especially compared to the last few centuries.
Shopping has become an everyday activity, a form of entertainment. We shop for so many reasons now, not just special occasions. Our increase desire to own more and more clothes begs the question, “Is Fashion Truly Self Expression?”. When we are knowingly or unconsciously driven by trends, social constructs and sometimes self worth, how can we really believe in self expression? Is what we wear a true reflection of ourselves or is it a version of aesthetically pleasing images found online?
The rise of influencer culture and social media has affected the way we view our wardrobe. We buy what we are told to buy and yet, we never seem to stop. The pressure to keep up means our consumption is set to only increase.
This discussion has a large impact on sustainability. It acknowledges that the “buy less, buy quality” mindset isn't an easy one to push. Though the slow fashion movement had been on an upward climb, the majority are still in the cycle of fast, disposable fashion. Unfortunately as long as the majority continue these practices, the social, economic and environment implications will continue to be a problem.
We think more conversations and social action is needed to raise awareness of the seriousness of the situation however, it is a top level problem. Big companies like Shein, H&M and Zara, contribute to the extent of constant consumerism and have a lot more impact on our spending behaviour than smaller organizations urging it to stop.
As long as we continue to advocate for sustainable fashion, we have a chance but what do you think? Has the manipulation of human behaviour gone too far into consumerism that we are unable to stop or will companies start putting people and the environment into consideration before profits in order to protect our futures.
Let us know what you think!