Okay so if you read my Instagram caption last week, you’ll know that I wasn’t too happy on this fine Friday morning. If you haven’t, why is that you ask? Well, because it was Black Friday and though I don’t have anything against it per se – being able to get some good deals before Christmas or the start of the really cold winter season is great – I was very annoyed at the number of emails promoting “deals” I’d been receiving for a week. A week.
Since that Monday, I was being bombarded with dozens of emails per day for Black Friday – isn’t Friday just one day out of the week though? And then I stopped checking out Bloglovin because all there was were blogposts about it. And then Instagram stories were being skipped. And all of a sudden, any social media or content creation platforms started to seriously get on my nerves.
It all started a while back now. I was feeling quite down by how freaking slow my growth is on Instagram. Yeah, I know, first world’s problem and all that but it got me thinking: is it because I post pictures of myself but don’t promote the clothes I’m wearing necessarily or most likely not new clothes? I noticed that the same type of content would always grow so much more when the creator was posting photos of new clothes and promoting new collections.
Now, I get why they do that, I love clothes and creating looks that make me feel comfortable and confident. However I’m also very much aware of the cost of constantly renewing your wardrobe. I’ve always been on a budget because I like to manage my money wisely, that’s something I’m very happy my parents taught my sister and I early on. So when I’m purchasing something, I know that it’s something I’m going to wear often and for a long time so I’d better very much like it and think about it before purchasing something.
So seeing people never wearing the same outfits on Instagram started to annoy me. First, I’ll admit I wondered just how? How could they spend so much money on clothes?! And then disclosure became compulsory and I started to notice all the “#gifted”, “#ads” and whatnot. Ohhhh that’s how! And I mean, you go girl! But so I started to curate who I was following more. People who I knew re-wore clothes because they showed it on their stories or you’d see the same top or pair of jeans they love on their feed often. I just stopped following the creators who just seemed to “promote” and whose personality I didn’t feel like poked through.
If you check out my feed, you’ll see me often wearing the same clothes because I take photos as I go and if I like a few shots taken the same day, whilst wearing the same outfit I’m okay with that. Because I post photos I love, I’ll promote the outfit if it’s pieces that I really love no matter if they are old or new. I post because I’m proud of the photos and I like the visual creativity of it. It doesn’t mean that I don’t enjoy fashion content because I do – but I’m more careful with who I’m following. I don’t want to watch or read content that is just all about buying buying buying and feeling like I can’t keep up or make me feel bad. I follow fashion accounts that give me inspiration to style outfits with what I already have and sometimes to pick up a piece or two I really love and know will enjoy wearing for a long time ; but also fashion accounts whose creator I love because of their personality and witty captions or fun stories. If they are going to talk about or promote products, I want to be sure that they are being honest about it.
We need to be more aware of the impact that consumption has on our life: it’s bad for our bank account, it prevents us from saving as much as we could and it’s bad for the environment. Like really bad. So what I’m trying to say (and failing at, I think) is that, even though I love clothes and styling, I am more conscious of how “triggering” the content I see everyday can be for me to buy things because they look good, or because I want to keep up with trends (and look good for the ‘gram). And so I’m trying to be more aware of that and careful when I buy clothes: will I wear it often? Can it be worn a few years in a row? What about the quality of it? Can I get something second-hand that looks similar?
I’m not perfect by any means. Absolutely not, but it’s something I’m more aware of. Also, it doesn’t mean that I don’t consume this type of content. Heck, I follow a ton of fashion Instagrammers and bloggers. it just means that I’m less likely to buy things I don’t need or truly want (treating yourself is great!) because I know it’s not good for the planet, or my bank account.
Lauren has amazing stories on thrifting and buying second hand – Loulabxelle