Fast fashion has become a central issue to many people, particularly relating to increasing environmental concerns, and it’s important to consider how you buy your jewellery as well as your clothes. Ethical jewellery brands are becoming the first port of call for many consumers, as they begin to shop more consciously. With that in mind, we’ve put together a brief guide on how to shop for sustainable and ethically-sourced jewellery. Select handmade or artisan jewellery When jewellery is produced on a mass scale, the supply chain sometimes involves mistreatment of workers, a lack of fair wages or even child labour. On the other hand, artisan jewellery is made by people who love their craft and are paid fairly for it. Opt for quality not quantity One of the issues with the ‘fast fashion’ industry is the number of items that consumers are buying. We believe that it’s far better to have a few carefully selected jewellery pieces of good quality and classic design which can be treasured and worn regularly, rather than buying a particular fun piece for one occasion and then never wearing it again! Invest in staple pieces Staple pieces are the key to buying jewellery in a sustainable way. Review what you already have in your jewellery collection, identify any gaps and think very carefully about what you want from those missing pieces. This will allow you to pick the jewellery you need. Buy from brands who source ethical materials One of the most important components of ethical jewellery is the materials the jewellery it is made from. When you’re shopping around, make sure that the brand is transparent about the materials used and where these are sourced from! Support local and independent brands A lot of the time, it is the well-known high-street brands who will mass produce jewellery cheaply and at the expense of the environment. We also find that some larger brands who previously used artisans have further moved to mass manufacturing, thereby threatening the skills carried by our artisans. If you want to shop sustainably, do your research and find independent brands who believe in using artisans and small co-operatives, as well as sourcing jewellery made with care. You can read all about Milina London and the story of how we source and craft our jewellery here. You can also browse our new arrivals to get started on your ethical jewellery journey!