Beauty & Fashion

A Year of Sustainable Fashion

I stopped setting New Years Resolutions a couple of years ago, instead opting for more manageable and achievable monthly goals instead. And whilst I still stand by that and don’t think I’d set New Years Resolutions again (cos let’s be honest, most of them are ridiculous. When am I ever going to take water skiing lessons in the middle of London?) there is SOMETHING that I want to do this year. And hopefully beyond.

Photo of a girl in a white shirt with a collar and floral detailing

First things first, I’m not going to pretend that I know basically anything about eco-friendly living or living sustainably. It’s not something I really thought about until the second half of 2019. Which I know, is NOT cool. I hold my hands up and say that for the longest time, I have SUCKED when it comes to eco-friendly living.

But of course over the last few years in particular, the urge for people to make eco-friendly changes has become much more urgent. With people like Greta Thunberg coming into the media and more bloggers like Glow Steady and Welsh Wanderer who are talking about Veganism and becoming more eco-conscious it’s hard not to sit up and pay attention anymore.

I do however believe that not everyone can do everything. We can’t save the world by ourselves. But I think every single person can do SOMETHING. Make one or two changes to their diet or lifestyle or shopping habits in order to do their bit to help. Imagine if EVERYONE did their bit?

So this year, I’ve decided on ONE resolution. A year of sustainable fashion.

I used the word fashion loosely because I’m not very fashionable. But I do often take the easy route when it comes to buying clothes. Boohoo was my best friend. Because they were cheap and convenient. Which I know now is a huge part of the problem. I was a huge part of the problem.

I came up with this goal around November, after watching THIS VIDEO from Hannah Witton, which is a fantastic place to start if you’re a beginner in sustainable fashion, like me. I’d heard the term sustainable fashion thrown around and knew bits and pieces of how damaging the fashion industry is for the environment thanks to Stacey Dooley’s ‘Fashion’s Dirty Secrets’ documentary.

But although I was hearing the facts and was shocked by them, I didn’t do anything about it. It wasn’t until late last year, like I said, that I really started looking into this more and wanting to change my own shopping habits as a consumer. I’m not Vegan. I’m not even Vegetarian. I needed to do my bit.

So this is me, holding myself accountable for not making changes sooner and admitting that I was part of the problem. But also telling you that this year… I’m going to change.

Starting with my year of sustainable fashion. I purchased my first item from depop in November last year, this gorgeous vintage shirt featured in the photos in the post. It was only £9 and I absolutely love it – I don’t think I’d have been able to find that on Boohoo. So for 2020:

No high street retailers or online shopping on Boohoo

These are often the biggest culprits. And fast fashion is always going to be a problem if the consumer (us) are always buying the products. Supply and demand. So this year, no more Boohoo or shopping in high street retailers.

More shopping in charity shops

Because not only might you find some gems, your money is also going to a good cause. It’s a win, win, in my opinion. So if there’s ever a time where I just FANCY a mooch, I’ll be heading straight for the charity shops instead.

eBay or depop for specific items

And if there’s anything in particular I’m looking for – such as when I was looking for a vintage style white shirt – I’ll be shopping second hand on depop or eBay. Where you’re much more likely to find unique items.

Researching sustainable brands

And I know that sometimes you’re going to NEED an item which perhaps isn’t second hand. So if that’s the case, I’ll be doing some research into sustainable brands for those staple items – even if it means they’re more expensive.

Re-selling or donating items

I’m also going to make a more conscious effort to re-sell or donate any of my clothing items I no longer want, instead of throwing them away. I’m using depop a lot more lately, so hopefully that’ll be a success!

My only exception here is underwear. However if anyone knows of any sustainable underwear brands, please do let me know about them! I’m actually really excited to change my fashion habits in 2020 and beyond. Fashion was something I actually started to enjoy a bit more again in the tail end of 2019 so I’d be keen to make this a more prominent feature on my blog going forward.

So here we are. My first proper venture into living more eco-consciously. Feel free to leave me suggestions in the comments and I’d love to hear your experiences with eco-friendly fashion! Pin this post for later:

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Jenny in Neverland

Twenty-something lifestyle blogger from Essex. Book lover, Slytherin, organisational wizard and enjoys Motorsport, Disney and Yoga.

99 Comments

  1. This is such a lovely blog post and you’ve raised some great concerns and it’s right that if everyone did their part, a big change would happen. I’m definitely going to look into sustainable fashion!

    Ayse x

    1. Thank you 🙂 xxx

  2. What a great way to start sustainability Used clothes are some of the biggest items in landfills. The blouse is gorgeous

    1. Thank you 🙂 I’m so proud of that find! xxx

  3. Second hand shopping is great. I’ve gotten a lot of cool stuff second hand ❤️

    1. I bet! I can’t wait to start checking out some charity shops xxx

      1. There’s just opened a big one in my town and I can’t wait to be well enough to go visit it 🙂

      2. yeah 🙂

  4. Love this! I’ve been trying to be more sustainable with my clothing purchases. I very rarely shop on the highstreet anymore, and on the rare occasion I do it’s at boutiques or brands where the quality is better. So (in theory) it lasts longer too. Besides that most of my pieces are from charity shops or E-bay. I’ve never tried depop though! That shirt looks gorgeous – is there a brand noted on the label at all?

    1. The label says VISION (Made in England) so I don’t know if that helps! xxx

      1. Kim says:

        Thanks! 😚 xx

  5. Laura at Palette of Thoughts says:

    This is fantastic Jenny and you’ve inspired me to try this out too and at least drastically reduce how much I’m buying from big high street/ fast fashion retailers. Brilliant post xxx

    1. I’m so glad this inspired you to give it a go too! Hope you find some lovely items xxx

  6. With such a throw away society and environment factors, this post is great! It’s great you are using your platform and sharing how you are changing your fashion habits! Any clothing I don’t wish you use or no longer fits, I let my little sister have anything and then I give to charity. I don’t buy too many clothing items at the moment as on a weight loss journey but will be conscious in the future. Thank you for sharing Jenny xx

    1. Thank you. I’m also trying to lose some weight so I’ll definitely be limiting my purchases for the forseeable future. It’s great that you have someone to pass your clothes down to! xxx

      1. Yeah and my little sister loves it too ha ha xxx

  7. Thanks SO much for the mention Jenny! It’s so refreshing to see others join in on sustainable fashion, if you ever have any questions or need recommendations I have a ton of resources on the blog and you can always feel free to pop me a message! xx
    El // welshwanderer.com

    1. Thanks so much! Appreciated! xxx

  8. This is so fantastic. I’m loving how honest you’ve been with yourself regarding this subject. I don’t often buy clothes for myself but when I do they are usually from big brands such as ASOS. I’m hoping to make some more sustainable changes this year too however. I feel so much more informed and motivated after reading through your post.

    Kate | thelittlecrunch.co.uk

    1. Thank you. I’d defintiely recommend checking out Welsh Wanderer if you need any more info on sustainability – she knows everything! xxx

  9. THIS!! I’ll be honest and admit that I have been a bit of the problem too. I don’t tend to buy much in the way of clothes and wear what I have to death! xD I do want to try buying more from charity shops!

    Thanks for the links, hun, and good luck! x

    Daisy xoxo | TheDeeWhoLived

    1. Same, I don’t buy MUCH but what I did buy was from all the wrong places xxx

  10. I can’t remember the last time I bought something new for myself, although it’s not a conscious decision. eBay and charity shops have turned up some real bargains recently and I’m all about saving money. I used to buy second hand for Flora too but I have to buy new uniform these days. That shirt is absolutely gorgeous, I’ve never used depop before but I’ll definitely be looking into it now. Fab post, Jenny, and good luck for the year ahead – I hope you’ll keep sharing your tips! XX

    Lisa | http://www.lisasnotebook.com

    1. Thank you! And yes, it’ll also save money in the long run I hope xxx

  11. This seems like a really great idea and a good way to start off the year! I have seen the second hand online shops floating around but always been a bit nervous about trying them out. Maybe I’ll give them a shot thanks to your inspiration!

    1. Depop is a great one! Would definitely recommend xxx

  12. This is such a good idea & it’s been one of my goals too! I’ve been working on thrifting clothes or borrowing from friends when needed! I really know nothing about being sustainable so this was super helpful! Good luck

    1. I’m surprised this post was so helpful! I don’t know basically anything about it either but I’m glad it’s opened people’s eyes! xxx

  13. I love this goal! I primarily get my clothes from second hand stores. People donate some really good outfits!

    1. I’m sure they do! I can’t wait to have a look around the charity shops in my area xxx

  14. How incredibly stylish is that top! You’re right, I don’t think you could find anything of such good quality and unique on sites like Boohoo. I too am trying to purchase more everlasting fashion pieces because not only is it good for the environment but it great on my pocket book!

    Natonya | https://justnatonya.wordpress.com

    1. Thank you! I know right! I absolutely love it – so glad I got it! xxx

  15. Good Luck! Well done for opting for sustainable fashion choices this year, it’s the little decisions like this that will be making the difference against fast fashion- especially if we all do it! May I also say that vintage blouse you bought from depop is gorgeous, I love the embroidery! This year I’m really trying to cut down my fast fashion impulses, I want to be more sustainable and do my bit for the planet. Such a great post, I’d love to continue seeing how you get on with this journey x

    http://www.bumblingalong.co.uk

    1. Absolutely 🙂 And thank you! I love the blouse too xxx

  16. I’m planning on doing the same this year after finding out how bad the fast fashion industry is for the environment! x

    – Charlotte / charlottesspace.com

    1. It’s SO bad, isn’t it! It’s shocking xxx

  17. Preach it gal! I love this, because fashion industry is the second worst polluter in existence. So, if most of us changed the way we consume fashion, the effect would be big. I’ll be introducing sustainable fashion brands on my blog along the year, and actually just secured an interview with one UK brand, so stay tuned 😉 xx

    1. Oooh exciting! Looking forward to reading that interview xxx

  18. I am a firm believer that we are all part of the problem in some way, shape or form – the real test is what we’re going to do about it. Huge kudos to you for recognizing it and making the effort to make this change in your life. I try to opt for more sustainable fashion, although I won’t claim to be perfect by any means. Shopping in charity/thrift shops is my favourite part of it as you can get some AMAZING clothing cheap and know you’re also helping to work towards a better world. It’s a great feeling.

    1. Thanks so much – I couldn’t ignore it any longer. But yes, we could all do our bit to help xxx

  19. I am the same with NY resolutions, I don’t set them as much anymore but more realistic goals and you know what, this was one of them – I am far from knowledgeable about his but I want to learn and take the steps to become more sustainable and eco friendly! Will be defo taking on these step with you!

    Jessica & James | http://www.foodandbaker.co.uk

    1. Thank you! Best of luck! xxx

  20. This is a great resolution. If we all do something, even if it’s small, it will make a huge difference in the long run. I rarely buy new clothes, but even I could make some improvements making sure what I do buy is sustainable. I absolutely love thrift stores, nearly all of the clothes I buy my son comes from them and even I find some items as well. Donating unneeded clothes is great too, I do that whenever possible.

    1. Same, I rarely buy new clothes but when I did, they were from all the wrong places. So small changes! xxx

  21. katy gilroy says:

    excited to see how you get on – I bloody love charity shops! x

    1. Thank you x

  22. I am gunna try to buy more from charity shops and second hand this year. As well as giving away things I don’t wear x

    1. Sounds like a good place to start x

  23. I absolutely LOVE thrift shopping because you can find some gems at a fraction of the price. I hardly ever shop at high street retailers these days – I could probably count on one hand how many items I bought last year, but to be perfectly honest, I don’t think I could stop shopping there altogether.
    I also make sure to donate the things I don’t want to wear anymore to charity shops or give them to friends. Every little helps!

    Dominika | Into the Bloom

    1. Every little definitely does help! xxx

  24. Good luck!
    I need to get out of the habit of just buying tees from Primark. Every couple of months I go in and grab a plain white and a slogan tee and I really don’t need them. What I do need is a better quality plain white tshirt that won’t get holes in after a couple of months haha.
    I try to shop in charity shops, but I find that most of the clothes are an eight or ten and I’m a sixteen so rarely find things that fit. Boo.
    I found a fantastic place to buy bras though, I use Molke. They’re a small company who pay a living wage in Scotland, everything is handmade, their brand is so inclusive and they use straight sized, plus size, and disabled models.
    Cora | http://www.teapartyprincess.co.uk/

    1. Very true! Sustainable brands are so much better quality too! And thank you for the bra recommendation! I DESPERATELY need new bras so I’ll be checking them out later! xxx

  25. Well done for opting for sustainable fashion this year! I agree, none of us have to be perfect but if we all did our bit then the world would be a better place. I try to buy from charity shops, ebay etc. but sometimes I do get drawn in by fast fashion!
    I have never heard of depop before so I will be checking that out.
    Another good way to get clothes sustainably is to go to clothes swaps! I’m lucky enough to have one locally that happens every month or so, and you can bring clothes that you don’t wear / want and swap them for ones that you want! It’s good fun, I recommend looking up whether there’s one locally to you 🙂

    1. Oooh I’ve never heard of those but they sound fun! I’ll try and find out if there’s any near me xxx

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