top of page

By: Miyuki Mori

We all purchase items online. Whether it be a clothing haul for yourself or a last minute birthday gift, the popularity of shopping online has peaked especially from the recent COVID-19 pandemic. Shopping from the comfort of your own home may be convenient, but there are many hidden horrors that we must be aware of when doing so. Thus, here is a quick and simple guide to the world of fast fashion, written in the spirit of trying to stay ethical during a difficult time.

What is it?

Here is fast fashion at a glance. Fast fashion is essentially clothing that sparks from recent fashion trends that is quick to move from the catwalk to the store. In other words, those fashion trends that get all the buzz for only a short speedy period of time (hence the name, fast fashion).

Why is it bad?

When looking at the fashion industry (and frankly, any industry that produces anything) it's smart to think of where and how certain items end up in your hands.

A simple T-shirt’s life cycle begins from the threads and fabric it is made out of, and makes its way into a consumer’s hands through countless delivery systems and production lines. That itself is exactly why fast fashion is devastating to our society. Think of where the fabric comes from and how it's sewed together into its final form. Is it from a corporate factory, or was this shirt made in a child labour facility where countless children are forced to work in inhumane conditions.

Take a look at the T-shirt’s colour. Where did this colour come from? Chances are, it may have been dyed in a facility that dunks the leftover dyes in our local lakes and rivers, not knowing what toxins might be in the dye that could possibly harm local ecosystems.

How did this T-shirt get from these places to inside your house? It is already common knowledge how driving and shipping requires gasoline, which will end up severely impacting our current climate change crisis.

Chances are, if you are buying from a company or brand that participates in fast fashion, they will be using unethical methods to mass produce products in a quick and inexpensive way just to satisfy the current buzz.

But wait! That’s not all...

If you’re concerned about ethical shopping, don’t be oblivious to the fact that this concept exists in other industries too. Do the terms “blood diamonds” or “conflict diamonds” ring a bell?

Engagement rings are often presented with beautiful diamonds that reflect every ray of the sun, though, not all diamonds are sunshine and rainbows. Conflict diamonds are jewels that are mined and produced in a war zone. Rebel forces that are opposed to the government threaten locals to help dig out these diamonds, and then sell the pricey product to fund their arms for their own military. This tends to happen in areas in Africa, and puts many innocent lives in risky and inhumane situations.

So what can I do?

I can understand that it’s quite hard being a teenager and trying to stay ethical while purchasing items, especially when most of us don’t have a full-time job yet. Most fast fashion companies sell clothing for exponentially low prices, and I'll admit, it's quite hard to resist the excitement that I get when seeing the cost as something I could afford without breaking the bank...but here, I pose a question. (and this applies for all forms of shopping as well, online or in person)

Is the excitement that you may feel from saving a few dollars greater than the satisfaction you feel, knowing you didn’t contribute to a cause that may not fit your morals?

Perhaps the next time you make a massive shopping haul, you may want to keep in mind where the items originate from, and indirectly help our planet stay ethical and healthy from the power of your own purchases.

Before you leave!

Here’s a quick resource you may want to use when shopping. This website analyzes the ethical level and sustainability of each company via searching the brand name up on the search bar.

Enjoy :)

25 views0 comments

By: Nicole P

Animals. Think about the many times you’ve seen animals in your life.

It almost seems normal at least one species of an animal every day, whether that be on the street while walking, in a forest or even in your own home both welcomed and unwelcomed.

Now imagine being one of those animals but instead of roaming where you typically see them, you see them through a window of a testing lab as subjects to a project.

It doesn’t feel the same right?

Do you see the difference when animals are within an unharmful environment without human action versus the image of harm being done due to human fault?

There is a reason why the unwelcoming reaction we get is there, it is because it is completely wrong.

You may ask “What is Animal Testing?”

The meaning is respectively in the name, the means to use animals (living beings) as test subjects for products that cannot be yet tested on humans in case real harm is caused.

Here is a small list of the many things animals are used for …

  • Fundamental research

  • Genetic modification

  • Regular testing

  • Cosmetics tests

Just imagine all these methods of testing were used on humans instead of animals. The position we would be forced into. Not the prettiest or most comfortable feeling huh.

BUT there is always a way to change, good change!


We start by avoiding non-cruelty-free products and brands such as …

  • Clinique

  • Estee Lauder

  • Victoria Secret

The constant pattern that can be seen within these brands is that most belong to the cosmetics industries. Companies that create makeup, body products, scents and products that make contact with skin are one of the largest sources of animal cruelty.


This is where we begin to notice the products that support cruelty-free. As of 2020, the list of cruelty brands has risen as well as the number of people who stopped purchasing from those harmful brands.

Now the brands that you should invest your money in are…

  • Bath and Body Works

  • Elf

  • Lush

  • Glossier

The world is constantly looking for ways to improve and become more efficient. Just because animals may not be considered humans does not mean they should be treated merely as test subjects for the hands of humans.

Now that you are aware of animal cruelty and the steps to depart from that manure of living, the fight to stop animal cruelty can continue and grow :).

16 views0 comments

By: Alex Lee

It is Wednesday, 3pm, mid-October. At the local community centre, you could find me sitting with a friend in a room waiting for kids to come in. Two kids would drift in per hour - some bright as ever, some talkative and others somber. Without wasting time, they would quickly get seated in the warm room that was rather dim. Thus, the lesson would begin.

During the school year, this is what I would do every Sunday for 5 hours, tutoring elementary school kids. The kids I worked with were of different ethnicities: Asian, White, Black, South Asian and more. Some were new to Canada and others have been here for a while.

Growing up, my father would tell me stories of his upbringing in poverty. In a time where my dad could not afford paid-tutors he relied on generous people who would teach him concepts he did not understand in school. After hearing about this, I felt inspired to give back to the community and launch my own temporary tutoring program for kids in lower income families.

So why is it important that children in low-income families receive free tutoring? First, classrooms are often overcrowded. With 30+ students in one class, teachers cannot monitor each and every person. Children learn at different paces: some faster, others slower. Specific kids may need more attention than others. As the impoverished students cannot turn to someone that can help them, tutors will be able to assist their individualized and unique educational needs.

More importantly, some schools may not be able to teach essential skills to these kids. Without effective critical thinking, decision making, good study habits, time management, problem solving and more, low-income students face an uphill battle in an already difficult classroom environment. In addition, these are life skills that kids must develop to escape their impoverished community. Tutoring can both teach these skills while providing a safe haven, something poverty stricken children might lack.

Oftentimes we see high rates of gun violence in lower class communities. Sexual assault. Physical and Mental Abuse. People often turn to schooling as a solution. This works…. but it does not work for everyone. School might not teach students crucial life skills and give them the individualized experience they desperately need. That's why I want you to consider joining me in helping to bring easily accessible, free tutoring services to children who live in poverty. Together, we can help transform impoverished communities for the better.

129 views0 comments
bottom of page