Having decluttered my wardrobe and discarded my unusable possessions, the list began to grow of items in which I needed to replace. With ‘one item in and two items out’ at the forefront of my mind, I knew I had to think consciously and ethically before I emptied my pockets.
Read on to see which three everyday items I chose to replace in the month of February.
People Tree Selby Trousers In Black (£17-£55)
The first item on my list was a new pair of black leggings. Leggings from high street stores such as Topshop and Primark seem to have a short shelf life. Not only do they not last, they tend to rip, fray and stretch all too soon. On my search for a more ethical alternative, I stumbled across People Tree, an environmentally sustainable fashion business that puts FairTrade at the forefront of their enterprise. They use organic certified cotton and source their materials locally to minimise their carbon footprint. Their clothing is not only affordable and high quality but it is made with the planet and people in mind.
I purchased the Black Selby Trousers, a pair of high-waisted stretch leggings with zip detail on the side and ankles. This garment is made of 95% organic cotton, produced in India in the Rajlakshmi Cotton Mills. Comfy and figure hugging, these leggings are of great quality with a soft velvet-like feel.
Patagonia Toromiro 22L Black Backpack (£37.50-£50)
The next item I purchased was a new backpack. In the past I have purchased rucksacks out of convenience and ease by popping into my local sports store and choosing the cheapest on offer. There was no shopping around, consideration for the manufacturing process nor did I read customer reviews. Within a few months, the straps would begin to fray at the seams, and the zip would break leaving the product unusable. As I set out on a hunt for a replacement, I utilised the internet and searched for ‘ethical rucksacks’. To my surprise, amongst the hippy hemp and rainbow striped, many well-known brands appeared and the designs were that of what I had in mind. I chose Patagonia, an outdoor clothing company that are part of the Fair Labour Association and Corporate Responsibility movement. The Toromiro 22 litre backpack is spacious, well-insulated and is made from 100% recycled polyester. Ethically made in Vietnam, Patagonia donates 1% of it’s annual profits around the world to environmental organisations to support sustainability.
The House Of Marley Little Bird In-Ear Headphones (£12.99)
My final purchase of the month was a new pair of headphones. Every 6 months or so, my in-ear headphones seem to falter and break. Having always grabbed the cheapest pair in TK Maxx, I decided to shop around a little for an ethical yet affordable alternative. After a quick search using Ecosia (an eco-friendly search engine that plants trees), I stumbled across The House of Marley. Set up by the late Bob Marley’s family, their vision of combining music with a respect for nature has manifested itself in audio and accessories. These Little Bird In-Ear Headphones are made from earth-friendly materials, reused plastics and come with an integrated microphone too. Lightweight and simple, these in-ear buds deliver top-quality sound for everyday use. At a price that is on par with any other high street brand, this ethical alternative cannot be beaten.
What ethical alternatives will you choose to purchase this month?