Not a week goes by when someone isn’t being publicly shamed, and cancel culture is still very much a ‘thing’. Sustainability shaming is also on the rise and I think it is something that needs to be stopped.
What is Sustainability Shaming?
Sustainability shaming seems to be a growing trend where people criticise others for actions deemed to be unsustainable and publicly mock them.
If anything, these attacks seem to be more commonly against people that actively share their efforts to be more sustainable. From what I have seen online via social media and news articles some examples of this would be:
- YouTubers talking about trying to cutdown on plastic use but still doing fast fashion hauls
- Celebrities attending environmental conferences but getting there by plane
Why it must be stopped
No one should have to justify their actions.
“We don’t need a handful of people doing zero waste perfectly. We need millions of people doing it imperfectly” – Anne Marie Bonneau
Personally I feel guilty enough if I buy something that hasn’t been sustainably made. I wrote a whole post about buyer’s remorse which I always feel if I buy something from a fast fashion brand, even if I love that item and know I will get a huge amount of wear out of it.
Sustainable fashion just isn’t as accessible as fast fashion for many people at the moment. Brands are still working on inclusive sizing, it’s more expensive and sometimes shopping pre-owned isn’t always the best option. There is no shame in shopping fast fashion if that is your only option. Shopping fast fashion may be the reason you can buy an outfit for an important job interview.
The problem with fast fashion is overconsumption and falling into the continuous stream of trends that it promotes. At the end of the day all we can do is be more conscious of what we buy, keep re-wearing what we own and hold brands accountable.