This year, as with every year before, we won't be participating in Black Friday. And we won't be next year either.
You're inboxes are probably exploding right now, with "once-in-a-life-time" discounts and possibly even a few "Green" Fridays accompanied with questionably large savings in tow.
The reason we don't believe in Black Friday is because it puts pressure on people to rush their decisions and buy more than they need. According to Green Alliance, 80% of Black Friday purchases, plus the plastic packaging they came in, end up in landfill, incineration, or at very best, low-quality recycling after just a couple, or even no, uses.
The environmental cost is easy to see, but the social cost is much more layered. Who is making this (mostly mass produced) clothing, homeware, electronics and are they being fairly paid or working in good conditions? Who is paying the price for all the unused and unwanted clothing that ends up in secondhand markets in the Global Majority? And is it really ethical to push products on consumers when we are aware of all these damaging effects?
We don’t want to condemn anyone who uses a Black Friday deal - we know times are tough and that saving where you can is important! But we urge you to take a pause and think first. Make a list of what you really need, resist those impulse purchases, and try to support brands who’s values align with yours.
And more often than not, you’ll find that it’s these slow, considered purchases that you’ll cherish the most and will stay with you for year to come. Now that’s the type of deal we’re after!