Black Friday has been widely criticized in the past years as a symbol of overconsumption which by consequence is also bad for the environment.
Ultimately, traditional Black Friday sales support fast fashion, electronic waste, and a whole lot of overconsumption making our Planet the biggest loser of this capitalist holiday.
A lot of products that are being bought during Black Friday will be used for one season then discarded. People can’t resist the need to buy the new TV that is so cheap at the moment, even though their current TV still works.
If you are trying all year long to pay attention to your environmental impact and overall waste, Black Friday is not a time to let your guards down. Pay extra attention during that last week of November as you will see many techniques to get you to buy more and more of what you don’t actually need. With huge deals, it might be hard to resist. That’s why you need to better prepare yourself. Here is how to do Black Friday more ethically this year.
Be aware of the traps of overconsumption. A huge promo deal might be attractive but buying something you don’t need, even if at a huge discount, is still a waste of money, energy, and resources.
As we are now a few days before Black Friday it is the perfect time to make a list of what you actually need. We are not saying you shouldn’t buy anything on sale at all. But don’t buy something you wouldn’t have bought otherwise. Stick to your list and don’t get pulled into the traps of advertisers. That also works for quantities: if you only need one, just buy one, even if the prices drop when you buy in bulk.
Fast consumption is pushing us to buy more and more often – either because it breaks easily or because it’s out of trend rapidly.
This year, invest in products, clothes, electronics that are very qualitative and will last longer. These sales might actually help you invest in a better product.
Black Friday can be a great opportunity to show your support to small businesses that are local, sustainable, and conscious. Especially this year, small businesses have suffered and can use your support. When buying on Black Friday, make sure to also check the story and values of the companies to know who and what you are supporting.
The thing is that voting doesn’t happen just on election day. It happens every day and on Black Friday, too. You get to decide who you give your money to. You can give it to a multinational who don’t pay their employees fairly and create a lot of pollution, or you can decide to support companies that put their heart into making products that are sustainable in every way possible.
A shirt should cost more than a cup of coffee. Unfortunately, we haven’t been used to that thought and we are conditioned to think we can be dressed for the price of lunch. Instead of thinking some products are too expensive, ask yourself why some brands are that cheap.
Don’t need anything? Then take this opportunity to go outside, spend time with family, and disconnect. Like an addict, the best way to not fall into the traps of overconsumption is to stay away from it. Avoid looking at ads, going into stores, scroll on social media.
Don’t be distracted by all the marketing and advertising that will want you to give up your values. Stick to your beliefs and support people and brands you love.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and a Happy Ethical Black Friday!