Minimalism: How and Why Stop Shopping

30 items of clothing, 8 pairs of shoes, 2 bags

At the beginning of July I started another six month shopping fast. I have undergone a shopping fast like this before, when I first started to minimise my belongings. It really taught me a lot about why I shop, and significantly changed my habits.

If all goes well, I will not be purchasing any new clothing, shoes or accessories for my wardrobe until the end of December.

There are two reasons I am doing this:

  1. I am at the end of my shopping budget.
  2. I want to enjoy the freedom of not buying anything new for a significant period of time.

Yes, you heard me right. There is a sense of freedom in not purchasing new things for your wardrobe. Perhaps you can relate, if you’ve experienced it before. I can only describe it as a lifting of pressure; there is no need to hunt or gather.

While I shop a lot less than some, when I have an active wish list, I definitely make an effort to check into my favourite brands every few weeks. I mostly do this online, though I sometimes check out local boutiques that house smaller brands. In that sense, I am spending time consuming on a regular basis, even if purchases are not being made.

Don’t get me wrong, I am definitely not against shopping for clothing or shoes. I love it, in moderation. But I do believe taking a break from shopping can really help put things in perspective.

Screen Shot 2017-06-17 at 10.28.43 AMIMG_9141

Here are some benefits that occur when you stop shopping.

  • You have time to identify your true style.
  • You develop more mindful shopping behaviours.
  • You learn to appreciate what you already have.
  • You save some money.
  • You focus less on the superficial.
  • You get more free time in your life.

There is never a ‘perfect’ time to start a shopping fast, because we have been conditioned to think that there is always something more we need.

I encourage you to try this with me for a while, even if it’s just for a month or two. I’ll be posting additional material in the coming weeks to help you stay on track, if you want the support.

Here is a video I made about this topic. Check out my YouTube channel for more videos, my Instagram account for daily outfits, and my Facebook account for minimalist resources and updates. Enjoy!


22 thoughts on “Minimalism: How and Why Stop Shopping

  1. I’d die if I stopped shopping for clothes. I’m sensitive to the cold, so if I ran out in the summer, I’d die ones winter hits. 😂
    That being said, this is a smart idea. I’ve cut back on my shopping by leaps and bounds and very very very rarely buy new anymore. These days the new stuff is from creative people using materials like deadstock or making things by hand. 😁

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Of freezing, I probably would, haha. I almost always hate my winter clothes from the year before because they didn’t keep me warm enough AND look cute enough. I tend to donate my winter stuff and hunt for a new wardrobe when it starts to get chilly. Not to mention the peices I do like the look of, they tend to get stained all over the sleeves from the machine shops. Been on the hunt for amazing black long sleeved secondhand tops for about a half a decade now. 😅
        That said, I found a secondhand coat last year I still LOVE. So I don’t think I’ll have to coat shop again this winter, which is HUGE for me. I’m so excited about that, honestly. It actually kept me WARM and I didn’t look like an ugly marshmallow. 😄😄😄

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Just because of how my finances work, i regularly go 3-6 months without buying any new clothes or shoes (or other items outside of food and disposables). I only buy clothes during brief windows of time. I really relate to the feeling of relief when you’re out of the consumer game. There’s a sort of an exhausting vigilance when I’m in “shopping mode”–a constant weighing of options, a constant searching eye. I also find myself starting to want things I didn’t realize I wanted. And when the shopping is done and I can go back to “not an option” mode, there’s definitely relief.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi, I really like your content and am applying the principles to my world. I am curious to know how often you wash your clothes and how you dry them in time for the next wearing in winter. I am in Sydney and finding it difficult to avoid the clothes dryer to finish some items off or hanging them in my bedroom windows some weekends. Weekday washing and drying of clothes isn’t an option for me as I am away for 12 hours or more and leave in the dark and get home in the dark.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I wash my clothes once a week. I can usually do just one load, because most of my things are grey or black. Some weeks I also do a white load, which includes sheets, towels, and the rare item of white clothing. I am also finding the dampness of winter is slowing down the drying process :(. These days I am pretty lucky to live in a sunny apartment, so most of the time drying things indoors will suffice – I’ll chuck them in front of the window. In winter I often have no choice but to dry sheets in the dryer, or in front of the heater – though I’m trying to avoid using it as much as possible this year.
      Hope this helps! Thanks for your comment! 🙂

      Like

      1. Yes, this helps a lot, thanks. For some reason I thought I probably should be washing more than once a week. You mention going back to work in one of your clips. I don’t mean to pry and I’m unsure if you have already shared this information somewhere but I’d be interested to know what your work is please. I work in a super-corporate office and find I have to have completely separate work and leisure clothes/shoes/had bags/accessories. Also, not meaning to pry again but it looks like you live on your own. I have a messy semi-hoarder husband living with me so I have to focus on the things I can control/influence (sigh).

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  4. Thanks a lot for your inspirations 😉 … Your expression “shopping fast” talks to me … even in the supermarket, remind myself of ” I want more space at home, not more stuff in” if I see sth that might be intersiting some day, maybe etc

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I haven’t done a complete ban but I regularly go 3-6 months without purchasing anything. It is nice when you realise that you’ve done that. I tend to have an active list of what I feel my wardrobe needs and if I don’t find anything in that list then I won’t buy anything. I think it’s important to have a plan and doing things this way means that I’m more than happy to spend more for quality pieces.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I was just watching a TEDx talk about this. I never considered it but I know that I am swimming in a pile of clothes that don’t get me excited to get dressed every morning.

    Liked by 1 person

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