I’m still coming to terms with my relationship with consumerism. I feel like I’m at a state in my journey where I find myself between past Flor, the one who loved going shopping and was excited about always having something new to wear, and future Flor, the one that doesn’t give material possessions that much credit and is actually excited about what she already has.
I’ve even lost the will to go out if it’s not for shopping. I think: “if I’m not going to purchase anything, why hang out at all?”, as if shopping was the only activity I could do whenever I go out.
I don’t understand. How did I get so far into this mess? Is someone else going through the same? What do people do when they go out? Is this all because of the pandemic?
I have more questions than answers.
I find it incredible that capitalism has gotten so deep into my skin that I consider going out to shop as the only option available out there for me. Part of me likes to blame advertising, super frequent launches and influencers that show us new, shiny things 24/7.
But who can I actually blame? Is it me for letting myself get tempted like this? Should I be stronger?
Or is it the responsibility of the brands that won’t let go of a little profit in the effort of trying to be more sustainable and friendly to humankind? (actual sustainability, not just greenwashing). Should beauty brands have only 1 release a year? Should fashion collections go back to being produced every 6 months and not on a weekly basis like it is right now?
And what do we do with influencers? Days before an event like Black Friday they tell us to be mindful yet they throw discounts and enormous hauls on our screens as soon as they finish saying so. They tell us every time they do huge closet tours that this is not an ideal amount of clothes and that you have to keep in mind this is their job and get a lot of freebies… but we still compare our closets with theirs. We look into our collection and say “oooh I’m missing another color of bikers, I’mma get that asap” and then we go into debt trying to become “that girl”.
I repeat: I don’t understand this. I have no idea what to do with this. Should I stop following influencers even if they inspire me with their style? Should I block brands to escape the new releases?
All I know is that I’m at that point where my body fuels up in adrenaline every time I’m about to hit “purchase”, and that something inside of me breaks when I cancel the operation and empty the shopping cart — at this point, I understand that all I’m trying to do is fill in the void with anxiety-induced shopping. That anxiety-induced shopping made us all go crazy hitting the “purchase” button when the pandemic hit and we didn’t know what else to do to cover up the pain.
It bothers me. It’s painful. It’s uncomfortable. And I don’t really know what to do.
The only thing I can think of is to resist. Resist the temptation. Remind me on a daily basis why I don’t want to spend any more money. That I have bigger, more transcendental dreams. That money isn’t there to just be spent mindlessly on more and more clothes.
I also want to be able to remind myself that we’re destroying the planet we live in. And that I want to keep working towards becoming more conscious and sustainable in regards to fashion.
Maybe this desire to compulsively shop all the time will vanish in the future. Tes. That sounds good. In the meantime, I will focus on resisting.
The picture representing this piece was taken after writing this post. Looking at it, I found myself thinking that “hey, this closet is not as big as I actually think… maybe I don’t own a ridiculous amount of clothes after all”. Even my vision of what is “too much” has been impaired because I keep comparing the size of my closet to everyone else’s.
It feels like, in my head, I think of a 1 meter long closet as a good thing and that walk-in closets are all wrong.
When will I put the focus on what I consider is right for me?