How to avoid buyer’s remorse.
Picture this: you’ve just purchased a cute top from a fast fashion brand in this season’s must-have colour. Sure, you know it’s not the best purchase you’ve ever made, but you’ve done a great job at justifying the purchase, “I’ll wear this for years, I have nothing to wear, I can pair it with four different pairs of pants, etc.”.
Image by ethical label, Esse.
Picture this: you’ve just purchased a cute top from a fast fashion brand in this season’s must-have colour. Sure, you know it’s not the best purchase you’ve ever made, but you’ve done a great job at justifying the purchase, “I’ll wear this for years, I have nothing to wear, I can pair it with four different pairs of pants, etc.” Fast forward a month and you find said top pushed to the back of your wardrobe, the tag is still attached and the colour is ‘so last month’. The pangs of guilt bubble to the surface and you’re yet again kicking yourself for contributing to the many environmental and social issues associated with fast fashion. Sound familiar? Don’t worry, we’ve all been there.
An addiction to fast fashion is a hard one to overcome, especially if you’re new to the world of ethical and sustainable alternatives, and do you know what makes it even worse? Buyer’s remorse. Buyer’s remorse is the Regina George of all fashion-related feeling—it’s a bitch—but after many years of trying, we have banished it from our lives, and we’re here to help you do the same.
We know this sounds about as fun as watching nail polish dry, but this is a surefire way to avoid buyer’s remorse. Not buying is also a fabulous way of avoiding something else, too: overdrawing the bank account. As much as we hate to admit it, we don’t actually need that dress we saw when we were scrolling through Instagram, especially when we’ve got rent to pay, a belly to fill, and a hangry dog to feed. Also, by not buying you’re taking a small but mighty stand against the big corporations that rely on your money to maximise their profits while they continue to exploit both people and the planet, and for that we commend you.
This is absolutely one of the best things you can do to ensure your wardrobe remains a sustainable one. By repairing and restoring your old clothes—filling any holes, fixing any rips, and immediately working your magic on stains—you are simultaneously saving money and keeping unnecessary waste out of landfill. If you’re inexperienced in the art of garment fixing, YouTube will be your best friend in this situation. We recommend this super handy tutorial we collaborated with our favourite, The Essentials Club, on: Simple mending tips to maintain your sustainable wardrobe.
There’s honestly nothing more rewarding than giving some tender loving care to the clothes that are looking a bit worse for wear (literally), and if you’ve tried and failed with needles and thread, take it to a professional as a last resort. Or Grandma. Take it to Grandma.
Because we already borrow from our friends all the time, right? You can even make a night of it; grab some wine, chuck on some early 2000s bangers, put on an old school fashion parade and fill each other’s bags with pre-loved clothes. Also, if there’s something in your wardrobe that you never wear but your best friend chooses every time you head out, why not gift it to them? This frees up space in your wardrobe, and it ensures that your least loved items will be somebody else’s most loved, too.
04. Buy secondhand
This may possibly be the most fun of all the suggestions—apart, of course, from the secondhand fashion parade. There is no better way to connect with likeminded individuals than buying unwanted clothes at discounted prices, right? Depop, Facebook Marketplace (and similar Facebook groups), and even the odd Instagram page are just a few of the places you and your op shopping inclined debit card can go. Who knows, you may even score yourself a vintage Chanel handbag worth more than your monthly wage.
One of the best ways to avoid buyer’s remorse? Don’t buy. Instead, we suggest renting. We’d bet our best pair of vintage Levi’s that there are many different clothing rental companies in your country/state/city/suburb/apartment block for you to choose from (and if you’re a little stuck, we’ve got a few here). You’ll be saving time, money and your conscience by renting instead of buying.
06. Use us
If you do need to buy something new—because, let’s face it, it’s inevitable—or if you have been slowly saving your pennies for something to wear to all the weddings you’ve got coming up, then buy through our brand directory. You can support a cause while getting something you want in return (as well as feeling the gratification).
Buying ethically doesn’t just keep the buyer’s remorse at bay, it also ensures your shopping habits are not costing the planet or the people on it, but only your bank account. What’s that famous saying? “Saving your pay keeps the buyer’s remorse away.”? It’s something like that, anyway.
Resisting the temptation to buy, repairing what you already have, swapping clothes with your best pals, scouting op shops for the best finds, renting instead of buying, and using us for your ethical and sustainable purchases (if you need to!) are five ways you can dodge buyer’s remorse. Oh, and if you’re in the conscious consumer mood and would like to be even savvier with your purchases, read up on our five steps to a good purchase.
Happy conscious consuming!