How to Shop Consciously: A New Wave of Ethical Browsing

From sustainable production to fair labor practices, your fashion choices are about more than simply what’s trending. For that reason, shopping platform Explore Wear aims to make ethical shopping easy.

Ethical fashion has made a huge impact on our 21st-century shopping trends, particularly as a new wave of socially conscious shoppers emerges in full force. This growing movement has put new pressure on big brands to use sustainable manufacturing and fair worker treatment at home and abroad. While big brands catch up, shoppers have turned instead to smaller businesses—especially handmade shops—with a more transparent production model.

Aside from our voting power, our consumer power is one of the most powerful forces driving change. Each coin we spend supports the business we’ve chosen, which is why it’s so important to understand what type of business model you’re encouraging when you buy your latest fashion or home items. 

Shopping unwisely could mean that you’re unknowingly supporting a number of harmful practices, including the use of child labor, sweatshops, and manufacturing practices that are highly damaging to the environment. In fact, the fashion industry does more harm to our environment than any other global industry except oil. 

This is precisely the moment when the innovative business model of Explore Wear truly shines. Its catalog and online shopping platform feature only fair trade, environmentally friendly items that are handcrafted with utmost care to process, people, and place. Platform features a number of small-to-medium-sized brands to make the dream of providing ethical shopping choices into a reality.

One of the brands featured on Explore Wear, Toks Visoks, is a lovely example of brand commitment to low-waste production, offering shoppers a chance to be part of a growing back-to-the-maker artisanal movement. Owner Akvilina Vacaityte still makes each of her leather bags by hand, ensuring quality and allowing for organic expansion of creative design ideas. 

Like Akvilina, each designer involved in this soulful project creates handcrafted pieces from their home cities across Scandinavia and the Baltic region. From wearable fashion and accessories to home goods, each piece carries with it a story of creative ambition, perseverance, and moral integrity. Creative Director Julia Janus runs her own lifestyle brand, which seems to reflect the values of Explore Wear as a whole. The platform employs a “holistic approach that defies age, time and size, at the same time breaking traditional designer fashion standards and expectations”.

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