Hey there! Its been a while since I posted, but some exciting things happened:
2) School finally ended, so it's summer for me! Whoop, whoop!
My last update was six months into the challenge and the process has taught me so much, I can’t comprehend it all. Here’s just a few lessons I’ve learned on this challenge:
1) A lot of people are afraid of terms like 'sustainable' , 'ethical' etc.
When you think of horror films, you don't think of titles like " Ways to Incorporate Sustainability Into Your Life " or " How Shopping Ethically Can Help". However, I noticed that as I talked about my challenge, or issues related to the matter, a few of people would be hesitant to talk about sustainable fashion. It’s understandable why.
There’s so many facets to ethical fashion it’s overwhelming. Before I started my challenge I’d heard of many ways the fashion industry harmed people and the environment. It seemed complicated so I ignored it. Honestly, I got slightly upset when people brought it up. I felt ashamed I couldn't solve the issue. For one of my marketing classes, I found many studies discussing this phenomenon. When people feel like their choices negatively impact others, it’s easier for them to ignore it than address the problem.
So don't feel like you’re alone.
Push beyond the thoughts telling you " You can't actually make a difference" or , even worse, "Those problems don't actually exist". Know that any steps towards a sustainable lifestyle are better than no steps taken. But please, don't think I know everything. Every day I’m learning more about ethical/sustainable fashion and how to live a conscious lifestyle. Just like anyone else, I’m taking baby steps.
With that said...
2) I have a lot to learn.
Recently a dear IG friend of mine called me out. She told me how my passion for sustainability is a bit muddled by a few of my side projects.
I instantly thought, "what if everything I’m doing is a sham?"
Looking back, I'm grateful for her critique. It made me realize I don't know everything about sustainability. Initially I was taken off guard, because I knew my motives for those projects. However, it was a reminder that I don't yet know how to be 100% ethical myself in the fashion world. I don't completely know what I am doing, but what matters is I’m taking steps.
I then realized I had many questions regarding the fashion industry and all its grey areas. For example:
“Is all ‘USA made’ clothing ethical? Even when the material sourcing is unknown?”
"If major fast fashion companies launch conscious/vintage/ethical lines, does that still constitute an ethical purchase?"
I don’t know the answer to these questions, but now I realize it’s these questions which drive me forward. I’m in a continual process of learning what it means to live consciously and figure out what sustainability means for me, which led me to conclude…
3) I have a heart for sustainability
If you know me, you might be thinking, "Well duh Jazmine, you never shut up about it".
I don’t care if my passion annoys you (sorry, not sorry). Combatting fast-fashion has developed in me a greater passion for including sustainability in all aspects of life. The main motivation for this is not to appear righteous, but to become aware of how my buying habits and lifestyle affect others.
And I don't think I would have ever come to this realization without this challenge.
I’m so grateful for this challenge. There’ve been many times where I wanted to quit and I thought I wasn’t making a difference. But there’s something my IG friend told me that kept me going:
"...Stay true to what you believe in, and in the long run that'll be the greatest reward filled with more opportunities"- JM
It doesn't matter what obstacles I face when pursuing this passion. I will find rewards in standing up for my convictions. So thank you JM and others who have followed me on this journey and encouraged me to keep going. With that in mind, there will be new changes coming to That Curly Top!
I don't plan to stop at this challenge, but to expand from it.
So be on the lookout for more diverse content about ethically shopping and living. And please, continue to join me in discovering what this all really means.