Let’s be honest here: People aren’t going to shop shopping any time soon. While the fashion industry is more aware of how its wastefulness and manufacturing processes can contribute to the climate crisis (it’s the second most-polluting industry in the world), with many brands turning to materials such as organic cotton and being more sustainable, this doesn’t always translate to the customer.
How many times, for example, can you remember buying that 20 quid top you saw and bought on a whim because you thought it might be great for the night out you had coming up? (And then you never wore it again.) I know I’m guilty of this. Not only is this not great for the environment, but it’s also not great for your budget.
I spoke to Farfetch’s Senior Womenswear Editor Celenie Seidel and hit up Who What Wear’s Shopping Editor Joy Montgomery, on how to shop smarter, which just so happens will make your wardrobe more sustainable too. Ready to see what they advised? Keep scrolling for some shopping advice gems.
1. BUY TIMELESS
I like Joy’s advice with this: “If I’m not certain whether it will stand the test of time, I will take a photo of it (either on the hangover, or even better, wearing it) and then walk away. I’ll look at the photo over the next week and if I'm still in love with it and believe it will fill a gap in my wardrobe, I’ll go back and buy it.”
In addition to this, Celenie says that there’s been a change in what people are after, with elevated basics being popular. “There has been a noticeable shift in the way that people are approaching shopping, in line with an increased collective awareness about reducing our impact on the planet in every area of our lives. Conveniently, this shift aligns with the current appetite for palette-cleanser dressing, largely thanks to the Old Céline/New Bottega effect. Advanced contemporary brands such as Totême, Low Classic and LVIR are doing an amazing job of offering up chic, timeless pieces at an approachable price point.”
2. TRY NOT TO SHOP WHEN EMOTIONAL
“For me, it’s all about approaching shopping with the right mindset, so that means not hitting Net-a-Porter after a stressful day or wandering into H&M in a rush and when you need a pick-me-up. Where possible, I try to not conflate shopping with feelings of comfort or release. Retail therapy does not work, trust me—I’ve tried it,” advises Joy.
3. THINK ABOUT WHAT'S ALREADY IN YOUR WARDROBE
“My approach is to stay true to ‘you’” says Celenie. “It’s great to try new things and branch out, but if you’re deciding to invest in something with a higher price point, I always feel it’s wise to buy within your usual personal aesthetic to get the most out of your purchase and ensure it’s something you can keep and love forever.”