With the annual event of Black Friday upon us, many people may be gearing up for a spending spree and why not? Christmas is only around the corner, the rising cost of living is eating into everyone’s disposable income and Black Friday is a chance to grab some items at heavily discounted prices. Surely it’s a win-win?
Well, not entirely. Although in some cases, people may be eying up specific products for months waiting for the sale to make the purchase of an item which they will use for many years, most of the time this is not what happens. With similar impacts to fast fashion, Black Friday encourages excessive buying and overconsumption of products without the forethought of how regularly they will be used before being discarded.
Predictions for Black Friday 2022
Spending for Black Friday and Cyber Monday is expected to reach nearly £4 billion in the UK alone and with an estimated 80% of all Black Friday purchases being thrown away after a maximum of a couple of uses, this is a lot of extra waste for landfills in the lead up to the end of the year.
The cause? Big discounts that encourage excessive impulse buying.
How to have a more sustainable Black Friday
If you want to make the most of the savings on offer without leaving the planet to suffer, here are some top tips for having a more sustainable Black Friday
- Before the sales, make a list of what you need
When Black Friday arrives, stick to your list. Avoid being swayed by other unnecessary purchases just because they are on discount.
- Support eco-conscious businesses
Instead of buying from large companies that have a reputation for disregarding the environment (think Boohoo, Amazon, Shein etc.) look for alternative businesses that sell similar products whilst doing less damage to the planet.
- Be home for delivery
If you’re going to be out when delivery is expected, leave a note for a safe place or ask for the parcel to be left with a neighbour. Having parcels redelivered causes unnecessary co2 emissions so do your best to avoid this.
As we all become more aware of our impacts on the environment, some companies are taking it upon themselves to take a stand against Black Friday. From intentionally not offering Black Friday discounts to making charitable donations, there are a number of ways to turn the negatives into a positive.
Sustainable fashion brand, Thought, is about to enter its 8th year of ‘Thoughtful Friday’ instead of Black Friday. On this day Thought will donate 100% of its profits to a chosen charity.
In some recent research carried out by Thought they found that only 28% of the UK public like Black Friday, which could be an indication that people are waking up to the damage that is being done by large discount events and raises questions about the longevity and success of these in the future.