encouraging young people to shop ethically

Young people and fashion go hand in hand. Keeping up with the latest trends, their friends and a constant stream of saving up to purchase any items they desire. Young people can be influenced though and I think with recent times they have become a symbol of a more tolerant world, this being an incredibly good thing. There are two sides to the story. The teen that wants to keep up with the latest trends yet is symbolic of a more open and pioneering generation. The question is not how can young people be more ethical and what they can do but how can they be encouraged? What advice or information is there online?

But how can young people shop more ethically? How can you encourage them to buy fashion that is both fashionable and better for the environment and the person behind the garment? As a teenager myself I think the first step to encourage young people to shop ethically is research and a lil’ education into what they’re already buying. I’m planning on doing a post about fashion documentaries that are a must watch but the tried and trusted film is the true cost. It’s the film that everyone who has perhaps wanted to find more about the secrets of the fast fashion industry has left feeling shocked and it’s almost a wake up call to the harsh horrors of the fashion world. Yes, quite an eye opener and one that does initiate feelings of wanting change and ultimately wanting to change their ways of buying. Reading up about the brand and who you’re buying from can definitely persuade teenagers and younger people to buy ethical fashion.

A top made by moi et some Levis jeans courtesy of depop

Of course, as in most of my ethical fashion posts I need to reiterate that I would never want to enforce buying ethically on anyone. It’s a learning curve and I am continuing to learn how to be more ethical every time I buy and I think, especially for young people whether you’re a student at school or at university buying ethically might seem a little daunting… how can I do this on a budget? An article in the Guardian a few years ago highlighted that young consumers are the key to the progression of sustainable brands. Not strictly speaking in fashion terms but in a broader sense yet it is clear that the younger generation have a huge part to play when it comes to ethically buying.

The main appeal to buying ethically for younger people, I think, isn’t even the price. It’s the design, how ‘cool’ is it considered to be and can I wear it multiple times on instagram without feeling ashamed? Benign I know but I’ve worn my Zara culottes so many times that some people have questioned whether I own other pairs of trousers. I do!! I am just getting my wear from the clothes I’ve bought, it’s a mindset that needs to be changed in order to overcome the consumerism that does indeed consume a lot of teens wardrobes. I love (or at least loved) Primark until I knew their practices and since then I vouch never to buy.

So I’ve talked a lot about how to buy more ethically on my blog but how can you encourage others to do the same?

start a conversation about the way in which they buy fashion. Honestly, opening up a conversation to a teenager on fashion is pretty interesting, especially if they haven’t really thought about where there clothes come from.
talk to your parents about the subject. They might know something about buying ethically and might be able to help in buying ethically.
-direct them to eleanorclaudie.com (oh the shameless plug) or tollydollyposhfashion.com because we are both teens who know a bit (or a lot) about ethical fashion.
-the reason why both of us I guess know so much is because we’ve done research on the subject so why not encourage them to see it as learning something new ??? an enlightenment of the fashion industry.
-so ethical fashion is pretty fab and actually very ‘generation Z’. Get on that depop hype and instead of buying a new Topshop coat, buy a vintage steal on the app of dreams (but try not to get addicted to it pls).

-a slightly less conventional way of getting any young people or teenagers you know to buy more ethically is to direct them to instagram page ‘What’s your Legacy‘. An Instagram and Youtube account that highlights the coolest sustainable brands. It would get anyone of any age wanting to buy ethically and I can strongly recommend their Youtube channel as well. Instagram is a font of teen approved ethical brands so worth encouraging a browse. Indeed, social media can be useful.
this post is a starter into your ethical journey, the first step is encouraging the change. The second is research and so forth. Take it from a teen who didn’t really think they could shun fast fashion, I love it and I love everything that ethical fashion stands for and I hope you can too!
share it!!! I get so many comments about my outfit posts on my instagram saying ‘where is x item from?’ and more often than not it is one of my newer, ethical buys. Yet, people aren’t commenting because it’s ethical, they’re commenting because they like it. From there if I link the brand you never know what ethical finds that person may end up buying?

I hope if you know any young people then this post can help direct them into buying ethically, that it is cool, better for the environment and the people behind the products that you buy. Are there any tips you have for encouraging the people you know to buy ethically? Spread the word!

lots of love, eleanor xx

On a totally unrelated side note, you should all read Katie’s blog: https://kaatielouu.blogspot.co.uk/. All her blog posts are beautifully written and wow is she an incredible human. I’m always up for supporting my gal pals so if you want a new blog to read then Katie is your gal.


  1. Izzy 29th August 2017 at 7:43 pm

    Education is definitely important and helps for young people who are willing to do the leg work (looking forward to your post about the documentaries). But what I think would really help is celebrities/influencers with young followers going ethical and talking about it! Unfortunately lots of young people live in an influencer led world and get their fashion ideas from instagram, youtube etc so I think that would really give a big push to young people!

    This post is super useful and I hope it encourages plenty of young people to start going ethical, also thanks for sharing what's your legacy, definitely giving them a follow!

    The Quirky Queer

  2. Emsi Rose 30th August 2017 at 11:05 am

    This post is super useful and I love that you're promoting ethical fashion. I'm so interested in our environment and the world we live in that it's led me to discover more about the clothes we buy and the impact it has. It comes back to everyday things so often! I'm already aiming to follow your advice thank youuu xo


  3. Princess B 30th August 2017 at 5:09 pm

    Honestly, such a beautifully written post. More teenagers certainly need to see the value of buying ethically and I wish there were more shops who supported it too! Very good topic 😊

    Britney Naudé
    💻 http://britneynaude.blogspot.co.za/?m=0

  4. Corinne & Kirsty 30th August 2017 at 7:23 pm

    Educated young people on fast fashion and how it affects the environment is really important. It can push them toward sustainable fashion or just make them aware of it. I am trying as hard as I can to change how I shop but sometimes it's quite hard. xx corinne

  5. Katie Hunter 1st September 2017 at 1:50 pm

    ahhh Eleanor, literally just came to this post to read about how i can be more ethical (which needs to be done) and because i looove the photo of your necklaces and saw my mention!! Fab post and thank you gal Xx

  6. Ilse Groeneveld-Slettedal 2nd September 2017 at 4:53 pm

    Thank you for bringing this matter to attention. I have just recently been educating myself more about sustainability, and try to buy sustainable clothes as much as possible. I also think it's important that the youth these days gets more aware of how to make ethical choices in daily life. But I must admit that it is far from easy.

    Ilse | http://www.ilsedanielle.com

  7. Eleanor Pritchard 4th September 2017 at 10:36 am

    Thank you! What's your legacy are so fab – one of my favorite sustainable fashion advocate to follow! x


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