‘Tis the season for mass consumption.
Newsfeeds and inboxes everywhere have been filling up for weeks, as brands fight for attention and try to woo us with their cut price deals.
Shopping at this time of year is a well established social norm, backed by billions of dollars in advertising spend.
Sustainable brands know that calls for a boycott just can’t compete.
Which is why many use the attention of Black Friday to carve out their own path and raise awareness of their cause.
Here are just some of the alternative Black Friday campaigns that caught our eye in 2022:
(Image credit: Hiut Denim Co)
Hiut Denim Co: The world’s most expensive jeans
While most brands are in a race to the bottom, slicing their prices as much as possible, Hiut Denim Co went the other way.
They’re on a mission to sell the world’s most expensive pair of jeans today.
For almost 40 years, Cardigan, a small town in west Wales, was home to a factory making 35,000 pairs of jeans each week for a large British retailer.
But when they moved their production overseas to save costs in 2002, the factory closed, and 400 jobs were lost.
The jobs were lost, but the skills weren’t.
So when David Hieatt was looking for a factory to start making jeans, he chose Cardigan.
Now Hiut Denim Co employs the machinists who previously worked at the old factory.
Prioritising slow, sustainable, skilled production, Hiut takes a long term view.
Making products that will last and taking a steady approach to growth that keeps purpose at the heart of the company.
Normally, Hiut Denim Co close their website completely on Black Friday.
But this year, they have upped their prices by 8,163%.
A limited edition pair of jeans purchased from them today will cost you anywhere between £195,000 and £2 million – depending on how many trees you want to plant with your purchase.
(Image credit: Choose Love)
Choose Love: donations doubled
Choose Love is a shop with a difference.
Inside you’ll find cosy gloves and scarves, coats, wash kits, sleeping bags, tents and more.
But this isn’t for outdoor adventuring, or planning your next camping trip.
Every purchase made at the Choose Love shop goes to a refugee.
You can buy real items and life-saving interventions – like mental health support, medical treatment and sea rescue.
For £565 you can even buy ‘one of everything’ – generosity that could help save a life, reunite a family, and support people through their trauma.
This Black Friday, Choose Love have got a pledge of $100,000 match-funding from a generous donor – if they can reach that number in sales from their shop.
#ShopEthicalInstead: a community united to change consumption!
If people are going to shop anyway, they may as well buy from better brands, right?
We all love to give meaningful gifts with a personal story behind them.
And when you buy from an ethical brand, that’s what you get.
Plus, with this holiday season being so crucial to the survival of small businesses, it’s essential that we ‘vote with our wallets’ and keep them afloat – if we want our communities to continue being vibrant, diverse and creative!
This year, we’ve united a community of over 100 small, ethical and sustainable businesses to spread the message far and wide.
We’ve already reached over 3.1 million people, and we’re aiming to double that over the Black Friday weekend!
(So please, share the small business love on social media using the hashtag!)
Ecologi is a B Corp that helps businesses and individuals fund climate action.
From tree planting to supporting verified carbon avoidance projects, Ecologi’s Impact Shop allows you to embed impact tailored to your business.
Its free carbon footprinting tool, Ecologi Zero (currently in Beta), makes it easy for SMEs start their Net Zero journey.
In short, Ecologi makes it easy for individuals and businesses to take climate action.
That’s why we love them!
You can meet all the brands on our Virtual High Street.
And if you want to offset your carbon footprint, you can sign up to Ecologi using our affiliate link and get free trees!
We’ll be announcing the total number of trees planted on Giving Tuesday next week – so if you want to make Black Friday more impactful, support our brands and vote with your wallet this weekend!
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#ShopEthicalInstead is a positive alternative to Black Friday - encouraging people to support small, ethical and sustainable businesses and vote with their wallets for a better world! Organised by #EthicalHour, now in its 5th year.