Wardrobing - You and Your Social Consumer Conscious

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Wardrobing - You Social Consumer Conscious

Are you guilty of wardrobing?

What is wardrobing?

Wardrobing is when you buy something; clothes, bags, jewellery, electronics etc and use it once or very slightly before you return it for a full refund.
Has the quest for the perfect wardrobe involved you in wardrobing? Did you see it as a crime?


Are you being controlled by capitalism?

Wardrobing according to a recent The Guardian article believes 1 in 5 consumers are guilty of wardrobing. This is not the act of buying online, trying on and then returning. No, wardrobing is the act of using the product and then returning it for aa full refund.
Not all people are guilty of wardrobing when they return goods, returning after trying on is perfectly fine. Its the deliberate act of wearing or using a products and then passing it off as 'new'.
A quote inside The Guardian article previously mentioned was worth a more in-depth look Natalie Galvau, 21, a design student said:
"Lately I have tried to get into the habit of shopping on the app Depop, or doing charity shopping, because of how bad fast fashion is for the environment, so I don’t wardrobe. I am trying to make more of a conscious effort not to consume as much, which is difficult because everything is so readily available on the internet. I don’t think you should be banned from returning things. It would be an issue for me because I like to take things home and see how they look."
This comment stood out for a few reasons. Reducing our personal carbon footprint through choosing to source clothes from second hand store is a good one and a very sustainable suggestion. 
Her next point regarding fast fashion and her labelling it 'bad'. Fast fashion is 'bad' for employees, communities, the environment including toxins, unsustainable materials, processed, waste and fossil fuels. 
Another valid point Natalie made was about returning things, as a consume with a companies agrees to a return period there is nothing wrong with try something on and returning it. Wardrobing is the deliberate act of using something and then returning it. A different act and intention to returning unused goods.


Why are people wardrobing?

The why is a failure of social structure. The lack of sustainability, ethical living, and a disconnect from community. Overpopulation in cities and a extreme need of many to be seen in this busy world, to be noticed. Self awareness for the sake of consumerism and a negligence to respond to the need for self awareness of our individual carbon footprint.
Social media promotes a need to stand out, fit in and be noticed all in one sweep of a click of a photo. We must be fashionable and in that have the latest and most noticeable products, goods and wears.
We are addicted to consuming, programmed by marketing and advertising, notifications, alerts and the world which surroundings us. The message is clear consume, buy, you will be happier. You need to have this (at any cost), you want it, you need it, you must have it, more and more, the demand for processions are limitless.
There will always been people who want more. Greed and a need for possessions, maybe we are all victim on some level or another. After all we all consume.
Wardrobing takes consumerism to a new level of addiction.
Have you been tempted to buy something costing more than what we should be spending?
Did you buy it? Did you buy and return?


Wardrobing in Advertising - Opposites can Attract

Fashion label Diesel used the concept of wardrobing in an advertising campaign. A clear message of the times, consumer habits and pressures.
Emotional marketing makes a brand stand out. A powerful means of marketing, a leverage to help a brand content with its audience. 
Hypothetical say a Diesel consumer does do as the campaign is dictating. Why would a fashion brand invest in a marketing campaign that tells people to return their goods? 
People feel, when you meet someone you judge them, we all do and can't really help it. The advertising tells a story which draws out people's vulnerabilities. The images connect with a need to belong and subliminally communicate that you will be cool and belong if you are wearing Diesel. Even to the extent of committing a crime of wardrobing. Very clever indeed.
Wardrobing - Diesel Campaign

Wardrobing - Diesel Campaign


Is there a wardrobing conscious?
Waste Vs Return

The wardrobing dilemma 

Proposed with the dilemma of waste versus return. There is a slightly used product which is in an 'able to be resold' condition.
Should you:
1. Return the item and get your money back keeping it from immediate waste. As you didn't want it any more.
2. Do you keep it, gift it, donate it, add it to the side of the footpath, add a 'free' sign. All furniture I have ever put out this way went and I furnished my first flat that way. 
The true predicament is the creator, the source of this social pressure, structure and our obsession, compulsion, our need to own and look a certain way.
Is this the real cause of wardrobing. 


A solution to wardrobing
Get second-hand shopping!

Local op shops, vintage stores, markets, Etsy online, Facebook marketplace - Google what you are looking forward and add second-hand to the search.
Enjoy the hunt, the find and the fact you are keeping it out of landfill. There is no carbon footprint associated with second-handing goods! They already exist, keeping them out of landfill is something to celebrate. 

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