These past several weeks, I have been recovering from a shopping addiction that started as soon as I settled into my first semester of school. Let me tell you, it was BAD. I have always been smart when it comes to handling and saving my money, but this time was different. As I walked to and from class I would pass stores complete with pretty window displays that would normally catch my eye. Low and behold, I would walk in, buy something, and walk right out as if nothing ever happened. I became a professional impulse buyer; if it was cute and fit right, I would buy it. I blame this addiction on the fact that I was a new student at a huge fashion school where everyone was dressed to the nines in the most flashy and flamboyant outfits. This rubbed off of me, so I turned to over spending on a ton of things I now realize I didn’t need at all.

When I went home for my winter break I packed up at least half of my closet expecting myself to wear every single thing. I stuffed as much as I could into a small carry on suit-case along with three duffle bags. Little did I know I would end up wearing black leggings and a sweatshirt every day. My mom would be happy to see I am now owning up to the fact that I have WAY to many clothes.

I have decided to embark on a mission to solve this problem and revamp my lifestyle. For starters, I haven’t spent money on clothes for myself since October (hey, that’s an accomplishment). Next time I go shopping I will prioritize thrift stores and higher-end consignment shops before turning to brand name ones. I will also make sure to spend my money wisely by hunting down the best deals I can find!

So, what about the physical clothing themselves? I’ve become inspired after watching an overwhelming number of YouTube videos about minimalist and ethical fashion. People who live a minimalist lifestyle are serious when it comes to wardrobe essentials and basic pieces that can be worn with all types of outfits. I am eager to clean out my own closet by getting rid of unnecessary items and selling or donating them. A major closet clean out may seem impossible for a girl like me, but I am confident in my ability to make it work.

When I have free time you can find me posting and selling my old and unwanted clothes on Depop (go follow me @hautebyhannah, shameless self promo). To put it into more simpler terms, Depop makes it possible to shop other people’s closets right from your cell phone. It’s a thrifter’s best friend. When something of mine is sold it’s nice to know that it will be used again instead of getting thrown away. It’s a win-win for everyone!

This leads me to another important point of how the fashion industry is the most polluting to our planet. There’s a documentary out there called “The True Cost” which talks all about the clothes we wear and the humans that make them. It also discusses what goes on behind the scenes of fast fashion factories and the overall impact they are making on the planet. This was the first thing that made me realize the correlation between fashion and the environment. Fast fashion, for those of you who don’t know, is inexpensive clothing that is produced quickly in order to meet the latest trends. In a world dominated by Topshop, H&M, and Forever21, I’ve turned to thrifting. Not because I can’t afford to buy a brand new jacket for eighty bucks (because I could), but because it’s so much better for the environment (and your wallet too)! To be frank, the unique clothes I find at a thrift store could never compare to what hangs on the rack of Urban Outfitters (which is normally infested with tween girls).

This past year, I have become the most impacted by all this talk on climate change. I have always been a firm believer in using eco-friendly and sustainable products that are good for both the earth and humans, but my knowledge lacked when it came to the environmental impact of the fashion industry.

Mother nature needs a little more love these days. Here’s to a new life of sustainable and eco-friendly fashion!

If you want to learn more about this topic, check out the videos and links below:

10 Best Affordable Brands For Ethical Fashion On A Budget

What Is Fast Fashion?

10 Actually Useful Thrifting Tips From Women Who Only Buy Used Clothes

See you soon,

~ Hannah

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