As much as minimalism is a practical ode to make more sustainable choices, this post is more about how minimalism makes you feel and the deeper value of the concept itself beyond owning less for the sake of better photo backgrounds.
I was raised to always take a close look at what I invested in when it came to my wardrobe – closer material and seams observation, price vs quality – a good classic item carrying the promise of longevity was worth the extra on the price tag and still is to this day!
Then, somewhere in the middle of my Bachelor programme years, I discovered an ambition to start a beauty channel on YouTube. I had always been attracted to blogging and rookie-level web design, but I craved to know more about video editing, content creation and makeup. And by makeup, I mean learning new techniques… in addition to multiple hauls which lead to a small – dare I say the following dirty word – hoarding of beauty products, brushes etc. Spending all my free money on it. Back then, overloaded beauty room tours were a thing.
While I learned a whole ton lot about makeup, gaining curiosity about different techniques I follow to this day, collecting product after product became somewhat of an obsession.
I never had enough, I always wanted the next one item to complete my collection – oh the consumerism and looking for happiness in buying things crept up quicker and sneakier than I had thought.
It was a late August afternoon a few months later when I first stumbled upon Jenny Mustard’s YouTube channel. The aesthetics, the cool-toned footage and photos, the airy rooms – it was an understatement to say I was impressed. Although quality over quantity was something I was more than vaguely familiar with, I hadn’t necessarily considered being a minimalist for the sake of it, at least not labeling or defining myself as such, until the makeup hoarding phase.
Jenny’s ideas were as refreshing to me as the color palette of her content.
Quickly, my preferences flew from makeup hoarding to cool-toned minimalism.
Although I did struggle a bit with shopping less, especially when working in often discounted retail at the time, I was endlessly inspired by the concept I even uploaded a related chatty video.
Moving abroad has once again brought up the subject to me. Packing while considering only a certain allowed amount of luggage does make one think twice about the necessity of what we own. There were the items I couldn’t see myself without, such as the safety blanket like long grey cardigan that has survived many seasons and changes of taste in my closet, my favourite red dress – that doesn’t crease! – or other daily essentials and so on.
Maybe it was because I was reading The Sustainable Fashion Handbook in addition, but I do feel that minimalism, if not a strict regime, is a refreshing reminder every once in a while at least. All the practical cost per wear, quality and eco-friendly advice aside, which I do consider vital otherwise but perhaps not so relevant to the angle of this post, is the emotional cost per wear: how does one item of clothing highlight loved features in you with a certain color or cut? Was it love at first sight or try on? Is it good quality and does the brand represent values or portray an concept you deeply care about? Does the item come with a story you truly value?
When thinking about these aspects, I don’t think minimalism, just as much as anything, shouldn’t be done for a pose. I love styling different outfits, trying new colors, cuts, patterns and concepts. However, going from one phase to another before moving abroad a little later did make me realize that there is beauty and harmony in thinking your wardrobe purchases through and making every purchase a story. Okay, you don’t need that for every pair of socks or v-neck shirt but you get the point.
Beyond the less is more aesthetic, it’s about the essence of the purchase and the personal investment in your future.
Thank you for reading and feel free to share any related thoughts in the comments!