Feeling the need for freer and more significant activity, and perceiving the new consumer-focused landscape, ad makers start to deny the age of excess. But if consumerism is reaching its end, what is advertising supposed to dedicate itself to? The answer is that the tug of war will be between two schools: one that wants to sell more and the other that wants to sell better.
It is worth looking closely at advertising to identify this compulsory condition: is it really the great villain responsible for unleashing the consumerism that is ravaging people and the planet? The answer is not so simple. Consumption, advertising and their symbolic meanings can be approached from another perspective. Advertising campaigns start to incorporate new contemporary codes that give rise to the culture of care: it’s time to talk to consumers with respect about this new concept of consumption.
The challenge of design is to maintain relevance in a saturated world. Who needs excess? More than just a trend, it is a matter of responsibility. New creators propose innovations that predict the desires of the future and inspire the traditional market.
Self-sufficient and sustainable communities in harmony with the environment are growing in popularity. In addition to their ecological focus, these communities also integrate economic, social, and cultural aspects through participatory management and permaculture. Ecovillages offer a post-modern way of life where we all work, have a voice, and collaborate.
The contemporary search for spirituality is observed in daily practices that promote self-knowledge above all. Yoga, meditation, veganism, integrative medicine: they are far from dogma and closer to the “true self” and a greater purpose. This emerging behavior is a way of subverting the order of these “liquid times”. The new purposes bypass the logic of capitalism and suggest a more inclusive lifestyle, less focused on the accumulation of capital.
Study no longer focuses on the illness, but on the individual as a whole – the mind, body, and spirit. The patient is now seen as primarily responsible for their own recovery, and is led to understand that healing works from inside to out, not the other way around. In this process, the search for simple and natural solutions grows stronger.
Consumerism and advertising have raised our expectations to the point of making impossible to be fully happy or satisfied. Fortunately, there is a movement that moves us away from illusion and brings us closer to plenitude.
A fast fashion item may be more similar to a film than you would expect. Titles overflow and movie theaters work in a mechanical rotative system: the next movie is right around the corner, there is no time for reflecting on what you just saw. Watching a film or not is deeply connected with today’s world emergencies.
In a world with less money and more time and access to knowledge, values could not remain the same. Instead of handbags with huge label prints, suggesting its humongous prices, we are now looking for companies that print things we really care about. Consumption as a statement reveals consumers are very aware that everything bought carries a political load.
For many girls today, to consume less is a way of self-expression in the world. It means getting your hands dirty and developing a more purposeful and meaningful life. Unlike the life experience of their parents, to own is no longer synoym of success and security. Internet is a key player in this game, providing information and the exchange of experiences and knowledge between girls.
How do we brake consumerism in a society ruled by brands and companies? Microtrends are showing our entire zeitgeist is turning to “less is more”. Consumers are getting more and more conscious. They are embracing new marketing models, capable to attend their needs and cravings with less harming impacts.
In order to be free from an economy model that destroys nature and makes it impossible to have significant connections, we have to get rid of its premises. Freedom is not about choosing what we consume and produce, but how we do it. Post-internet society have shown us that by interacting in sharing economy we amplify our flow possibilities, not only in information but also in resources.
The recent study “The Rise Of Lowsumerism” says no to excess and explores the revelation of a new mentality concerning to consumption. Consuming should be a well thought act according to our needs, not a substitute for our lack of time or affection. It’s ok to feel lost when you want such a big lifestyle change. That is why this article will show you some possible paths to start living a lowsumer life.
With an aesthetic that denied consumerism, it was the punk movement that started spreading the DIY word. In essence, both punk and DIY endorse a more intimate relation with personal consumption. The punk spirit in DIY is undeniable and growing in a society that gets more and more conscious about its impact on planet Earth.
Given the notion of conscious consumption that emerges in our society, the tendency is that remarkable — or revolutionary — products of the future will be those capable to translate our yearning for long-lasting objects, capable of defying the discarding logic. Modular technology questions the validity of fast-paced production cycles, blocking planned obsolescence.
Sharing economy blossoms along with the post-modern liquidity. Having access to more things, and them being more disposable, we create an exponentially more fluid identity, more compatible with ourselves. We are not what we have, but what we access.
The current environmental scenario demands a complete change on human’s mentality. That also implies a change on the criteria of what “success” is, specially concerning to people and business. New codes substitute capitalist models, revealing the urgency of sustainable economy.
We are living a time of urban flight, looking for our wildest essence, for simple life nirvana, for a bigger purpose and something that makes us more meaningful to the world. Conscious consumption, permaculture and running away from urban chaos are hot topics. After all, our true core is not what we can buy, but what we can be.
The way society faces its responsibilities to the environment gives signs of how it is going through a critical and complex transformation. The years preaching the same old canons of the “sustainable citizen” handbook are coming to an end. The model in which everything is disposable is gettig old fashioned, giving the floor to zero waste projects.
Buying has never been easier, but the innovations that facilitate our life also end up isolating us. Our acts of buying and consumer habits prove that we are growing increasingly distant from each other. Resuming buying habits connected to traditional and local values became a solution to strengthen face-to-face interaction, once lost with the emergence of digital media. Recovering relationships that got lost thanks to fragile and impersonal digital ties seems to be an emerging behavior in large urban centers.
The man was removed from the center of development and many human bonds became commercial relations. We live immersed in consumerism, and individuality became the new flag of freedom (or is it advertising?). As much as we believe that we evolved much since the beginning of times, the feeling is that we grew very little when it comes to consciousness. And it is about time to give it a try.
We live in a world of excesses and our education is getting increasingly consumption-driven. Before taking their first steps, children already own fully decorated bedrooms, a wardrobe designed for all kinds of occasion, and such a busy agenda that the visit of a close relative can only be scheduled within three months. They grow up believing it is normal to have everything and become frustrated adults. This culture of excess turned everything into commonness.
Fashion consumption has been reviewed. Ethical issues are on the table and start being accounted for in buying decisions. When the wrongdoings of the industry come to surface, consumption becomes a conscious political act. Today brands are listening to the rejection by consumers of scandals that degrade human life. The awakening to a more evolved habit of consumption might reach even higher levels in the next few years.