What is Ethical Living?

Being that the ethical consumer industry is continuously growing at a fast pace, I've received a lot of questions asking what exactly is fair-trade, sustainable, eco-friendly? Or why do you say ethically sourced? What does this all mean? 

First, let’s review a few key words:

{fair trade}: trade in which fair prices are paid to laborers in developing countries. 

{ethically sourced}: ensuring that the products being sourced using environmentally friendly materials, that are created in safe facilities, by workers who are treated well, and paid fair wages to work legal hours. 

{organic}: products that are pesticide-free, additive-free, dye-free, etc. creating the smallest carbon foot print possible.

{sustainable / eco fashion}: the goal of which is to create a production system which can be supported indefinitely in terms of environmentalism and social responsibility.

{supply chain transparency}: consumers have access to accurate details about where their clothing is made, and how. 

Okay now that you know what all these terms mean, I want to address some common misconceptions surrounding ethical products. I have heard stereotypical comments such as, “oh that stuff is all 'touristy' or 'and stuff I would never wear, eat, or put in my house.

Fair trade fashion is wearable. Brands like EverlaneRaven & Lily, and Noonday all have pieces that anyone can wear on a daily basis. While Everlane has some amazing basics, Noonday has great accessories to pair with them. Just because your clothing is being made by hands that are treated fairly, does not mean you have to deviate from your own personal style. A perfect example of this is my article on how you can keep your Bohemian look using ethically sourced NOVICA products (click here).

Ethical products are affordable. Upon first researching ethical brands, you may realize that the price tags are a little more than you would usually pay at the mall. This makes sense, of course, because you are paying a fair price to support the hands and hearts of the people making your products. A great suggestion for affording ethical products is the idea behind the capsule closet.  This entails picking 37 pieces for one entire season. Wait until the last two weeks of that season to see what few items you would like to add to your capsule for next season. Being that you have not shopped all season allows you to save money, and buy products that are ~ethically sourced~ as well as fitting to your personal style.

I hope this helps to solve any misunderstandings or questions you have about ethical products! Please remember that there are hands & hearts who make the products you use every day.