Are you or someone you love an eco-friendly fashionista? You might if you care about the impact jewelry creation has on the environment, your health, or the conditions under workers create your favorite accessories.
Didn’t know eco-friendly fashion was a thing?
You might know it under the term sustainable fashion and it’s a growing trend among designers and consumers who have a goal to create fashionable pieces that can be supported indefinitely. For instance, producing one t-shirt 2700 liters of water. The average person will consume that in about 900 days.
“Non-eco-friendly jewelry disrupts our environment by causing soil erosion, deforestation, population relocation and much more,” Suzanne Miglucci, CEO of Charles & Colvard, told Teen Vogue in an interview.
Some countries fund wars with precious minerals that are mined to create engagement and wedding rings. An eco-friendly fashionista would only want to support industries that certify use of conflict-free jewels.
But finding a jewelry that is eco-friendly may not be so obvious.
Here are three tips to ensure that you can accessorize and keep you conscious in tact.
- Review the brand’s Corporate Social Responsibility policy. You can find this on any website. You will if the CSR is vital to their mission. Missing one of these policies front and center should be your first red flag. Of course, any brand will always put their best foot forward – even if that means exaggerating some. So take this policy with a grain of salt. However, it’s important to know if sustainable or eco-friendly policies are a part of how this brand operates.
- Check the material origin. Understand where the precious minerals are obtained and how. Are their diamond rings ethical? Gold obtained from strip mining in the rainforests of Ecuador would not contribute to a world of sustainable jewelry creation. If you don’t want to support such corrosive practices that harm the environment, inquire about the mineral acquisition practices.
- Shop brands that promote a sustainable philosophy. This is a growing trend in the fashion industry. Start by browsing jewelry with a brand already in the business of support a sustainable business model. This way, if you fall in love with a piece there will be no internal conflict later.
- Opt for locally made products. When you have fashions that are produced far from you, transportation alone reduces the chances that pieces are eco-friendly. Locally made products reduce the carbon footprint, make use of local materials, and give you the opportunity to have a closer connection to the brand or designer.
- Look beyond the obvious. Of course, working conditions and ethically paid employees are central to the world of sustainable and eco-friendly fashion. However, factories that use green energy or solar power also do their part to be conscious residents of this planet. Also pay attention to their packaging process. Is it recyclable or made from recyclable products? These practices are essential to know as well.
We can all do our part to ensure that our world remains healthy and productive for generations to come. That includes our personal choices and how we choose to accessorize. Every decision helps and the more consumers demand that products we buy are created with a sustainable philosophy in mind, the more businesses and brands will cater to those demands.