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How Influencer Culture Has Affected Our Shopping Habits

December 2, 2019

So as of late, as in almost four months ago, I’ve made the change of having a minimalist wardrobe. For those of you who don’t know, a minimalist wardrobe is a closet in which you have a limited number of items, purposely. To be frank, this is a project I’ve technically been working on for an extended amount of time. Between consistently selling clothes, donating them, and buying them all over again, this change was inevitably going to happen. 

Why? Because I was exhausted. Fast fashion at one point became a really reckless habit of mine. And for the life of me I couldn’t understand why. As I was cleaning out the last of my closet, I pulled out things that I had either worn once, never worn, or barely remembered I owned. When I was growing up, I never had this problem, so when, why, and how did it rear it’s’ ugly head in adulthood? In a simple phrase: the Youtubers. 

All Gen Z'ers and millenials have fallen victim to the influencer wave in some form or fashion. Influencers have become the new radio, televison, and billboard advertisements. And through platforms like Youtube and Instagram they sell us more than products, they sell a lifestyle. And that was the root of my problem. 

As a person who is all about clothing as a form of expression, fashion has always been extremely important to me. Looking good is an equally impertinent element of feeling good. So i've never been one to shy away from investing in a good wardrobe. However, as I entered college, and became more engaged with platforms like Pinterest and Instagram, fashion, like the kind I saw in magazines, my wardrobe began to feel more inadequate. 

All of the fashion Youtubers that I followed were doing hauls, and purchasing seasonal wardrobes every other upload. They also incessantly went thrift shopping and online shopping incessantly, as a past time and never for need. I never saw any of them wear the same thing twice, especially if it was already posted on Instagram. And subliminally I began to follow suit. 

I would get bored on weekends, and wander aimlessly through the mall looking for a good deal, or trying to match up to something I had seen one of my favs wear recently, and it didn't make me any happier or any cooler. So like I said I would sell and donate clothing, but still watching the videos, fall into the same pitfalls again. Until finally I realized that I was adopting their habits, these influencers were influecing me all right. 

They were influencing me to engage in excess shopping, fast fashion, and poor spending habits. All of which are not only bad for the environment, but my life as a whole.

I finally decided that having over twenty pairs of shoes, and six pairs of jeans was no longer for me. So right after I downsized, it seems like Youtubers did too, is that not a trip? 

The new focus has shifted to "sustainability." And I put the word in quotes because while this is very true, too much clothing is extremely harmful for our Earth as it continues to pile up in landfills, no one has spoken on its' personal effects.

I know I am not the only one who has fallen victim to feeling like they have to keep up with Joneses i.e. influencers. And it's okay to want an item or two that they have promoted or even aspire to have a similar style,but I beg of everyone to be mindful of being an ordinary person, being infuenced by an extraordinary lifestyle.

 

Princess-Zenita is a lover of all things fashion and all things frugal. You can find her at theprincessispauping.com 

 

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