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Ethical and Sustainable Jewelry Shopping Guide – Step-by-Step Advice
It has never been easier for conscientious consumers to source ethical & sustainable jewelry online. With a few important points to consider, you can make smart purchases that fit your values. Jewelry speaks to style and sentiment, but it should also reflect your values, whether it’s worn for day-to-day or special occasions.
What Does Ethical & Sustainable Jewelry Mean?
Ethical and sustainable jewelry comes from suppliers with moral and responsible practices. It may have been crafted without the use of child labor, created in small batches, made of recycled materials, or produced in a renewable and sustainable way. But jewelry progress goes beyond economics and labor and can also include other methods such as responsibly sourcing gemstones or using ethical & sustainable materials in packaging.
Where & How to Buy Ethical & Sustainable Jewelry Online
- Start with the retailer – Research the retailer and understand their process. Where did the materials come from? What environmental standards do they follow? The world of ethical & sustainable jewelry is growing, so look for retailers committed to ethical and sustainable practices.
- Material Matters – With ethical and sustainable materials to choose from, every purchase can be unique. Sustainable and recycled materials include ethically sourced and reclaimed gold, recycled glass, and recycled materials such as brass and aluminum.
- Gem-Specifics – Beyond materials, some companies go the extra mile and source stones from suppliers working with sustainable production methods and labor standards.
- Look for Certifications – Look for gemstones with certifications. The Kimberley Process is a set of certification regulations formed in 2003 to prevent conflict diamonds from entering the trade. Lab-created diamonds are also an ethical option.
- Go Small-Scale If Possible – Look to the small-scale jewelry makers and independent jewelry designers. Etsy and other e-commerce sites are a great way to find small-batch publishers with sustainable jewelry catalogs tailored to your needs.
- Packaging – Gift boxes and wrap complete the jewelry shopping experience. Choose retailers who ship in environmentally-friendly packaging and consider pieces that come with unique, sustainable packaging solutions.
- Care & Maintenance – Caring for sustainable jewelry is important. Jewelry pieces should be inspected regularly for any wear and tear or loose parts. Make sure to properly clean and store the jewelry when not in use.
Sustainable Jewelry Shopping Resources
The resources for ethical and sustainable jewelry shopping can be overwhelming. Here are some of the online resources to help you shop responsibly:
- Fair Trade Organizations – Seek out jewelry with certifications from organizations like Fairtrade International and Donorschoose.
- E-Commerce Sites – Eco-friendly e-commerce sites like Etsy offer ethical and sustainable jewelry from independent small business owners.
- DIY Resources – The world of sustainable jewelry making includes some wonderful DIY resources, from tutorials to jewelry tools.
- Jewelry Magazines & Blogs – Subscribing to jewelry magazines or reading jewelry blogs can provide insight into the latest gemstone trends, sustainable jewelry news, ethical initiatives, and more.
Making Sustainable Jewelry Shopping a Part of Your Lifestyle
Ultimately, sustainable and ethical jewelry shopping is a lifestyle choice. As a conscientious consumer, a little research can help you find the perfect piece of jewelry without compromising your values. Ethical and sustainable jewelry reflects your values and may even be a conversation starter in your community. Shopping for sustainable and ethical jewelry online can make the process effortless and the perfect fit for your values.