The Fun Side of Anti-Consumerism

An image of four 'iFace' advertisements on a black brick wall.

If you know me well, you’ll know that I’ve been into minimalism for a long while. For the last two years or so, I’ve been selling old things on eBay, enduring [ spending bans ] and constantly talking myself out of buying products. One of my favourite posts I’ve ever written has been ‘How and Why You Should Simplify Your Space’ and I’m incredibly glad that it’s becoming more acceptable to consume less.

We should all be taking more responsibility for the world we live in. So many items of clothing end up in landfill; the effects on the environment are devastating and it’s only us, as humans, that can do something about it. Even if this isn’t enough to encourage a change in shopping habits, I think where the clothes are made, the wages that their workers are made are another huge factor to consider when considering an anti-consumerism lifestyle.

But, less me not bore you with all of that, and lets talk about the fun side of anti-consumerism. From going through your wardrobe and finding clothes that you’d completely forgotten about, to styling a new outfit from pieces in your wardrobe already. I’ve started wearing jumpers on top of my dresses so that it looks as if I’m wearing a skirt. Absolute game changer.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: My Sustainable & Ethical Clothing Wishlist

I won’t lie, I find anti-consumerism incredibly tough sometimes. It can be hard to continue staying away from shops and buying things. What starts off as a browse can quickly become a desire to buy; avoidance is the best policy, but I remind myself why I’m doing this and it helps me along the way. I’m not on a complete spending ban. I do buy things if I need it, although I try my best to ensure that it’s something I’ll get the most use out of, and I won’t re-purchase something that I can live without.

I loved shopping for the thrill of finding something new at an absolute bargain of a price. What also gives me the same thrill? Going out with friends, shooting cute outfit shots and generally feeling good about myself. Going on travels – whether it’s a full blown holiday or simply a day trip, exploring the sea and the sights. Reading books [I currently buy mine; although I plan to start using my local library more when I’ve completed my TBR pile!] has vastly improved my knowledge and understanding over the last few months, and I’m incredibly glad that I’ve discovered such a hobby.

Instead of going to the shops, why not spend a few hours looking for ways to improve yourself? Whether that’s taking driving lessons, listening to podcasts, meditating or taking an online course. There’s bound to be something out there that you can do to grow.

One of my biggest problems is consuming around friends; I find it incredibly easy to go to a restaurant and spend an excessive amount of money on a meal, or going to a shopping centre and spending money on clothes. This is one of the things I’m working on closely this year, by opting for more affordable, sustainable options and ditching the shops. Nights in with friends are a heck of a lot of fun, and there’s always new activities to try such as escape rooms, mini-golf and weekend adventures.

I can’t wait to make a start on my journey to a more sustainable lifestyle: and I’d love it if you’d join me on the adventure!

Chloe x

66 Comments

  1. January 20, 2019 / 10:10 am

    I didn’t really think much about slow living and sustainability until I started to read yours and Nati’s blog posts, and I have this immense guilt on my shoulders at the moment. I am an avid shopper, and I have so many clothes in my wardrobe that I don’t even wear. It’s awful, isn’t it? But the other week I cleared out my underwear drawer and I’m going to do the same, slowly, with the rest of my wardrobe.

    I too am going to focus on spending more on experiences rather than on material things! Memories will always last longer <3

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:28 am

      Ahh bless you Lizzie; it’s great that you’re having a gradual declutter though. That’s such a great perspective to have; you won’t ever regret those memories either 🙂 <3

  2. January 20, 2019 / 10:17 am

    I usually do a big sort through of my wardrobe about 3 times a year and I often find I just end up rediscovering old clothes and then I start wearing those again! I try to limit the amount I spend on things such as clothes because honestly I would rather save the money for a holiday or something! Xx

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:28 am

      That’s great Charlotte – well done! Haha yes, holidays are way better! xx

  3. January 20, 2019 / 10:25 am

    This is an amazing initiative Chloe! I’ve never considered the effects of consumerism. Thank you so much for shedding light on this. Keep up the good work! 💖
    Taiwo | https://www.alifestylenerd.wordpress.com

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:29 am

      Thanks Taiwo! <3

  4. January 20, 2019 / 10:34 am

    I’m keen to join you! I’m really trying to Reduce Reuse Recylce. We’ve set up a compost bin, made three separate recycling bins (so we can take all the soft plastics down to the refuse centre and also cash in on all our 10c bottles) Clothes and shoes don’t do it for me but I spend so much money on books and craft stuff. I’m going to subscribe to your blog. Let’s all keep each other honest.

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:29 am

      That’s great Marrissa, well done! Having a compost bin is a great way to reduce food waste too. Thank you! <3

  5. January 20, 2019 / 10:41 am

    This was such a great post and it’s reminded me that I need to stop buying new things so often and actually use what I have! Being a beauty blogger I’m forever buying new makeup products to test and review but then once I’ve reviewed them sometimes they sit in my drawer forgotten about for months so I definitely need to work on shopping less!

    Jess // foundationsandfairytales.wordpress.com
    xx

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:30 am

      Thanks Jess! Yess exactly, I have been there too and ended up throwing away so many products. I’d rather have the money in my pocket! 😉 x

  6. January 20, 2019 / 11:25 am

    This is an amazing post! I used to be a bit of a shopaholic and would buy something because it’s on sale even if I didn’t really love it. Now I’m so much better and prefer self-care and focusing on ways to improve my life. I think making that lifestyle change has a positive impact on your mental health and it’s better for the environment too. Totally relate! x

    Megan | https://meganelizabethlifestyle.com/

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:32 am

      Thanks Megan! That’s great, I’m so proud of you! <3 xx

  7. January 20, 2019 / 11:25 am

    I really enjoyed your post on sustainable living/anti-consumerism. It is completely true that so many people accumulate unnecessary things and or too many items. I’ve been struggling with space in my room for past few years – ‘perks’ of living in shared flats in London, so recently I went through all of my clothes and gave so many I don’t wear to my younger sister.

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:33 am

      Thanks Alicja; that means a lot! That’s a great way to recycle your clothes when you’re feeling cluttered – I’m sure she’s loving them! xx

  8. January 20, 2019 / 11:29 am

    I totally understand you and I’m trying to do the same. It’s not always easy but step by step we will get there.

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:34 am

      Thank you Margarida! Absolutely! xx

  9. Kim
    January 20, 2019 / 11:33 am

    I loved this blog post so much!

    I’m trying to be more mindful of things like waste and excessive, pointless spending. After going through my closet for an hour, I realised that I had mounds of clothes I hadn’t even worn one time. And shoes that weren’t even in my size, just because they were damn pretty. I did donate some stuff, but I’m trying to make a conscious effort to actually wear the rest.

    I dread to think how many flights I could have booked with the money I spent on once-worn items 🙈

    Great read, Chloe.

    P.S. Gorgeous jacket in the pics. Where’d you get it?

    Kim | https://ukwordgirl.com

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 11:35 am

      Thanks Kim; that means so much! Haha definitely. I’m sure we could have both got a heck of a lot more journeys!

      It was from TK Maxx a few years ago! xx

      https://www.chloexlizabeth.com

  10. January 20, 2019 / 11:47 am

    This is a great post! I’m in the same place as you atm with the no buys ect.

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 12:02 pm

      Well done Lauren! That’s great 😀

  11. January 20, 2019 / 1:07 pm

    Great post! In the past year or so I’ve also been trying to be more mindful and intentional with what I buy, especially clothes. I’ve never been much of a shopaholic, but I still used to often browse clothing stores online out of boredom, or buy things just because they’re on sale when I didn’t actually need them. If I buy something now it’s mostly basic, versatile items that I know I’m going to use for a long time.

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 4:41 pm

      Thanks Len! That’s great to hear, I do the same too with online shopping – and shopping basics! I love filling my basket and then closing the window. 😉

  12. January 20, 2019 / 1:39 pm

    Love this post! This has been a concept I have been considering more and more over the past year. I absolutely love how real you have made this post, accepting that it is a challenge but at the same time you acknowledge that it has been a positive change. This year I want to have more experiences rather than adding another handbag to my collection and this post has pushed me to try doing this even more!

    Also love the images in this post!

    https://sophaarambles.blogspot.com/

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 4:42 pm

      Thank you so much! I’m so glad to hear that Soph, you have to let me know how it goes <3

  13. January 20, 2019 / 2:18 pm

    Avoiding the shops are definitely the key when it comes to spending less in the shops! I try not to look at clothes too often – I always find too many cute things and it’s just easier not to look haha. Your ideas are all wonderful though and I love that more and more people are trying various ways to be friendly to the environment.

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 4:46 pm

      100%! Thank you so much Kristin 😀

  14. January 20, 2019 / 2:56 pm

    I think buying at times just becomes a ‘thing’ that everyone does. There’s really a difference between a ‘need’ and a ‘want’. It’s so easy to start hoarding things just because they look ‘pretty’.
    Important topic to discuss!

    Laura / https://www.laustworld.com

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 4:46 pm

      Thanks Laura, I’m glad you liked it! xx

  15. January 20, 2019 / 3:52 pm

    I have never really thought about living in such a way. I mean we try to only spend money on things we need but I know I have 10 hoodies in my closet and I most likely don’t need that many!!!! Good for you! Your post is inspiring and I hope others will read it and look at themselves like I have! Thanks so much!

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 4:47 pm

      Thank you so much!! xx

  16. January 20, 2019 / 4:45 pm

    This is a great post Chloe! I agree, there are so many other interesting things we can do instead of spending our time shopping. This year, I want to read more books and going to the local library is such a good way to read and save money too! Thanks for sharing and wishing you all the best with your journey <3 xx

    Bexa | http://www.hellobexa.com

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 20, 2019 / 4:47 pm

      Thanks Bexa! <3 xx

  17. January 20, 2019 / 6:28 pm

    I love this post so much! I’ve been trying to be more conscious and sustainable with my choices this year and so far so good. It’s great to hear that other people are doing the same as well!

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:38 pm

      Thanks Indi – I’d love to hear how you’re getting on! 😀

  18. January 20, 2019 / 7:00 pm

    I found this to be a really unique and cool post because I feel like all anyone really talks about is what to spend on!! We are so consumer-driven and all about getting the best and latest things. It takes a LOT of self control to not go out on a shopping spree and do whatever you want with your money! I am doing that myself because I’m trying to save up money to accomplish a bigger goal but sometimes it TEARS me up inside!! Ugh. It definitely feels a bit rewarding though when you have come a long way from denying yourself certain things and seeing how much self control you’ve got! Thank you for sharing Chloe!

    Geraldine | https://geraldinetalks.com

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:38 pm

      Thank you so much Geraldine – I’m glad you liked it! <3

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:39 pm

      I use a combination of the two! I mostly use eBay, but Depop does have a younger/’millennial’ audience, so it really depends on what it is you’re selling! x

  19. January 20, 2019 / 8:07 pm

    Love this! I’m also trying to be more sustainable in the choices I make and the things I do. Recently I’ve been focusing far more on experiences than on material things and it’s made me feel a lot better!

    Jas xx | https://thoughtsfromjasmine.co.uk

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:39 pm

      Thats amazing news, Well done Jas! xx

  20. January 20, 2019 / 8:37 pm

    This is such an interesting post. I’ve really been working on avoiding waste but I could definitely do more to cut down- I’ve been thinking about re-joining my local library too, what a great way to avoid waste and get through so many more books!

    Soph – https://sophhearts.com x

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:39 pm

      Exactly, it’s a win win! Thanks Soph! <3

  21. January 20, 2019 / 9:02 pm

    Chloe I find myself consuming less simply because I don’t have a job to pay for the things I want but I has taught me a valuable lesson. I learned that I don’t have to buy unnecessary items and that I should be creative with what I have in my closet. You made some good points. Minimalism outlines what is priority for you and that makes life fun because you learn that you have enough in life to make you happy such as family and friends ❤️

    Natonya | https://www.justnatonya.wordpress.com

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:40 pm

      That’s fantastic Natonya, and such a great mindset. I hope your financial situation improves! <3

  22. January 20, 2019 / 11:11 pm

    I think I sit somewhere in the middle of this spectrum. I never really buy things impulsively anymore, unless I’ve instantly fallen in love with it and I know it will easily slide into my wardrobe and get worn a lot. Beauty, I think is the only thing I shop excessively for (oops). I love that you included a list of other things that give you that job. I really enjoy that process of going through your wardrobe and discovering ‘new’ things you’d forgotten about x

    Sophie
    http://www.glowsteady.co.uk

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:40 pm

      Thank you Sophie! x

  23. January 21, 2019 / 12:56 am

    Totally agree. Consumerism is one of the main reasons behind the pollution of the planet. Sustainable lifestyle and mentality must be encouraged. Well done! Also lovely blog. I look forward to your next post x

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:40 pm

      Thanks Julia, much appreciated! <3

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:40 pm

      Thanks bbs! Love u!

  24. January 21, 2019 / 12:32 pm

    Tbh I’d definitely rather a night in than a night out any day, plus it does mean that you don’t have to spend as much money, if any at all. I want to read more books this year, after finishing my degree and focus on my art and painting too! Although, I will have to go to the shops soon as my jeans all have holes in and not intentional ones haha! Imogen x http://www.imogenchloe.co.uk

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:41 pm

      Haha, sometimes needs must! 😉 Thanks so much Imogen. I can’t wait to see what you get reading – and good luck with the rest of uni! xx

  25. January 21, 2019 / 2:43 pm

    This has really opened my eyes! Recently, I have been trying to take on a mindset of “I’m I going to get a lot of use of out it, or do I just want it for the sake of it?”. Sometimes it’s hard to stick to that, but after reading this, I think I need to crack down on myself a lot harder. I’m having to empty my wardrobes soon as my bedroom is getting plastered next month, and I’m going to be very strict with going through my clothes and trying to donate a lot to charities. But also trying to get use out of clothes that have maybe been pushed to the back of the drawers after buying more and more! Wearing jumpers over dresses sounds so cute – I’ll have to try that one with some dresses I’ve maybe fallen out of love with!

    Beka | http://www.bekadaisies.com

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:41 pm

      I’m so happy to hear that Beka, good luck with it! 😀 <3

  26. January 22, 2019 / 4:16 am

    Ive definitely learnt not to hoard since moving to a smaller and place and buy only if you wear x

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:42 pm

      That’s great; well done Joyce! x

  27. January 23, 2019 / 12:15 pm

    I haven’t been shopping in months and it actually feels SO good! I’m trying to buy less ‘throw away’ items and prefer to purchase necessary items that I will wear over and over again. I hate the impacts consumerism has on the environment, it’s so sad xo

    Char | http://www.charslittleblog.co.uk

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:43 pm

      That’s amazing Char, well done! <3

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:43 pm

      Thank you lovely! <3

  28. January 23, 2019 / 5:55 pm

    I used to be so bad at buying so many clothes that I never wore so this year I’m really trying to buy things that I truly love and are going to last. Such a great read! x

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:44 pm

      Thanks Gem! That’s great – you’ll have to let us know what you find! x

  29. January 23, 2019 / 10:49 pm

    i have already started an anti-consumerism lifestyle and luckily bloggers can help. water bottles are really on trend and they actually save from using so many plastic bottles. trying to do something even in fashion.

    Cate ღ 35mm in Style

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:43 pm

      That’s great, Kate! I love my stainless steel water bottle. Makes a super cute accessory too! 😉

  30. January 25, 2019 / 9:59 pm

    Loved this post and I agree!
    It is actually so refreshing to not buy unnecessary things – or things you’ll forget you bought within a month or two.
    I also LOVE a good night in with friends xx

    • Chloe Elizabeth
      Author
      January 26, 2019 / 3:44 pm

      Thanks Kat! Night in needed soon 😀 x

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