Five years ago I began this blog to try motivate myself to live up to the environmental message I believed in since I was a kid. Since then I’ve been busy growing up. I moved to Oxford for a year to earn a masters degree, moved back to Dublin again, moved in with my partner, started a PhD, attended weddings and funerals, cried, laughed, and lived all the while keeping the environmental ethos in my mind but unfortunately not finding time to write about it. At the same time environmentalism was growing. The brand of environmentalism has changed so dramatically since 2010. For the first time ever, being green isn’t equated with being a martyr hippie. Re-branding has transformed the movement with sleek minimalism. Far from sacrificial, the new lifestyle is sold to add meaningful value, purpose, and happiness in life. Environmentalism is no longer the sole purpose, it just happens to be a means to an end, which makes it more attractive to a mass market. You can call it conscious living, zero-waste lifestyle or minimalism but you cannot deny that it is sexy. The architects and designers have joined forces with the granola-eating hippies in a shared quest for happiness and simplistic beauty in every day life. Combined with that the concerned mothers and yoga doing health nerds have joined in because of too many health scares related to plastic products. All of these people combine to produce the same result.
It doesn’t matter if you have changed what you buy because you are worried about the health implications of using plastic, or that you are just fed up of the mass amount of stuff you have accumulated due to mindless consumerism, if you want to buy quality goods consciously for minimalist aesthetics, or if, like me, you want to reduce the amount of stuff and plastic you buy because of its detrimental effects on the environment. All of those reasons are valid and will produce the same result; less waste and happier people.
For further reading on the various threads of the new consumer here are some of my favourites:
(these blogs/bloggers do not endorse me I just enjoy their work and hope you will too)