Our 3 Favorite Bloggers Prove that Sustainable Living is the New Chic.

by Vivian Morellon

Mindful eating, living and dressing- all qualities we look for while perusing instagram for OOT inspirations. In fact, the hashtags #vegan #sustainableliving #slowfashion and #capsuledressing kept popping up as I scrolled through my favorite influencers.

Meet Candice Mok, Ona Rihu and Keira Mary Mason – low waste advocates & ethical fashionistas; NTCH’s favorite bloggers talk about their inspiration, conscious clothing, and a sustainable lifestyle – all while sporting chic outfits.

Screen+Shot+2018-12-14+at+4.48.52+PM.jpg

Candice Mok

A slow living advocate and your go-to inspiration for minimalist dressing, Candice Mok challenges you to simplify your life and opens the conversation with her followers through #createtorenew and #capsuleconversations tags. With a perfectly curated closet, chic staples #glowup with Candice’s eye for layering, mixing and matching.

What inspired you to become a minimalist dresser and adopt slow living? Was it a trend you tried one day and it stuck or was it a gradual transition? 

Screen Shot 2018-12-14 at 4.53.05 PM.png

Adopting a slower pace in life definitely wasn’t a one-time change for me. I would say I’m still currently on a transition to slow living and dressing minimally happened to be a huge part of that journey. Over the past few years I had been inspired many times to reduce my waste through various zero waste advocators, Youtubers, documentaries and books about decluttering and minimalism. However sometimes that lifestyle felt a bit unattainable and unapproachable. It wasn’t until my most recent move to Sydney, Australia, where I packed up my life in one suitcase, that I began my own journey to living a more sustainable life. I made small changes here and there, as simple as bringing a tote bag around so I don’t have to use single-use plastic bags. In terms of slow fashion, that transition came along a little later as I began to evaluate the different areas of my life that I found to be the most wasteful and easiest to make changes. I was also inspired by the documentary The True Cost and one day, just decided to make a life change because if you always put it off, you probably won’t do it. From then on, I decided that I needed to stop buying fast fashion and try to be intentional with my fashion decisions and purchases. Again, I’m not perfect and sometimes there are beautiful, sustainable and ethical items that are way out of budget, but I try my best to shop slow when I can and use whatever I already own. 
 

Some of the general benefits of minimalist dressing include a de-cluttered closet and smart spending. Personally, how do you believe minimalist dressing and slow living has enhanced your life? 

My pursuit to slow living has really opened my eyes to how fast-paced our world is and how much we crave immediate gratification. I personally love that slow living helps me evaluate my life and be intentional in the small things such as making the decision to bring a reusable cup or making the decision to support an ethical brand. I’ve found that making more intentional purchases and having an ethical, minimalist wardrobe leads me to be more appreciative and grateful for the things I own. I’m happy and proud to support brands with good causes, knowing that the people who made the garments on my back are well appreciated. 
 Some more practical benefits to having a minimal wardrobe is that so much money is saved because you aren’t spending it on trends that you may or may not wear, or items that are one time uses. There is so much intentionality to each item that is brought into your wardrobe.

It also saves me time in the morning when I’m getting ready because pretty much all of my pieces match and having fewer pieces that I love and feel comfortable in makes deciding what to wear that much easier! 
 

Screen Shot 2018-12-14 at 4.49.56 PM.png

What tips/advice would you give to anyone trying to adopt slow fashion and slow living? Any dressing hacks? 

Some fun styling tips I have are to use layers, textures, and colour to create different outfits with items you already have. For example, I love to wear a base turtleneck layer and style items like a chunky knit or structured jacket on top of it with the sleeves or collar peeking out. I am all about giving new life to items that already exist in your wardrobe, and you’d be surprised to see how creative you can get and how many outfits you can put together with just a few items. Finally, my best advice for slow living and slow fashion is to just start. Pick an area of your life that you’d like to minimize or be less wasteful in and start small, remembering that small changes are important, and perfection is not the end goal. 


For more mindful fashion and capsule inspirations follow Candice at @candicemtay

Screen Shot 2018-12-14 at 4.56.26 PM.png

Ona Rihu

Based in Helsinki, Ona’s work focuses on bring light to Mother Earth’s needs and gives trendy alternatives for a sustainable lifestyle. Vegan food tips, sustainable fashion and green travel, Ona’s instagram is filled with beautiful destinations and mindful content- easy on the planet and our eyes.

What inspired you to become a sustainable and conscious consumer? 

It all started from me going vegan almost 3 years ago. When I realized the huge double-standard I’d been living, eating animal products while owning a dog and being extremely animal-friendly. It’s just a huge double standard and it made me question a lot of other things in society, like fast fashion. I try to think twice before buying things, and always rather support small businesses with transparent values than big corporations. 

How do you find balance when shopping and choosing ethical practices that might otherwise be limiting? 

Screen Shot 2018-12-14 at 4.57.48 PM.png

I don’t really find anything I do limiting. I feel so much lighter knowing that my actions or purchases don’t support an unethical industry. I am happy to spend a bit more money or effort on something I know will have a positive impact on society. Everytime you spend money you cast a vote for what kind of society you want to live in. I must say though, I am far from perfect and still struggle with plastic and traveling for example. But I feel like becoming a more conscious consumer is a personal journey and some things are easier to give up than others. 

Do you have any tips for people who want to make the switch to vegan? What are your go to brands and how do you survive when traveling and exposed to other foods? 

Screen Shot 2018-12-14 at 5.01.22 PM.png

Definitely just get educated on it. I started by watching Cowspiracy, Forks Over Knives, and Earthlings. There’s also a lot of literature and studies being done in the subject. After that, I would just try to make vegan versions of my favorite foods. For example, I’ve always loved lasagna and being vegan doesn’t affect that at all. Now it’s just vegan lasagna! Overall going vegan was a huge turning point in my life and it has made me a much healthier, happier person. I love Oatly's products, I often use them in cooking, smoothies and anything really. When I’m traveling I might have some oats with me to make porridge in case I can’t get vegan breakfast right away. But usually you can find vegan products in supermarkets anywhere in Europe at least. I also use the app Happycow to see if there are any vegan-friendly places near me. I’ve never really had any problems! Usually you can also negotiate with the waiter and get a vegan meal anywhere. I’m heading to Morocco for New Years and I’m excited to see how the vegan-food scene is there.

Tell us more about Inlace, your own digital platform for sharing your lifestyle. 

Inlace media was founded by me and two dear friends of mine last January. Our platform focuses on building a sustainable lifestyle, sharing tips and inspiration for a holistic and healthy life. A lot of what we do is based around personal experience and growth. We don’t want to seem exclusive, but rather include our audience and build a conscious community. We are going to have guest writers writing for us soon, I’m really excited for that! 


Follow Ona and her travel adventures at @onadoes and inlacemedia.com

Keira Mason

Keira Mary Mason- a health and wellness coach living in Bali inspires us to adopt a zero waste lifestyle while sporting sustainable clothing. On her blog you’ll find brand shoutouts, beauty and wellness tips - with a gorgeous island backdrop.

Vegan Resortwear-2.jpg

What inspired you to become a minimalist dresser and adopt slow living? Was it a trend you tried one day and it stuck or was it a gradual transition?

Komodo-10.jpg

My journey into adopting a minimalistic wardrobe actually came about through my anxiety surrounding social pressures in my younger adult years. At that time, I found my identity in, and was always seeking approval through, my appearance. It was such an unhealthy and exhausting experience for me. Every time I went out I felt like I needed to have a new outfit which was completely unsatisfying and sent me broke. I was the classic example of a fast fashion millennial. Aware that my current lifestyle habits were impacting me in such a negative way, I found myself in a season of personal growth. I started searching for ways to slow down everything in my life, and started adopting a more conscious approach to living. Over time I came to learn about the social and environmental impacts my fashion habits had on the planet and started to purchase less, secondhand and ethically. It was very much a conscious decision to move into my current way of living and thinking, and I have found a whole new sense of freedom through minimalistic living that I would never give up now! 

Some of the general benefits of minimalist dressing include a de-cluttered closet and smart spending. Personally, how do you believe minimalist dressing and slow living has enhanced your life ?

Adopting a minimalistic wardrobe has given me an amazing sense of freedom. I never get anxiety over what to wear anymore because I genuinely love everything in my wardrobe. Nothing was bought on an impulse or for a 'one time' occasion. Everything I own is practical, beautiful and easily paired with my other garments. I am happier, less stressed and love the opportunity I have to support small conscious brands through my purchasing habits. Slow living has had many of the same impacts. I have learnt to say no, place value on time for me and I honestly just feel like I am out of the 'rat race' and the pressure of ‘keeping up with the Jonse’s’ is off my shoulders for good. 
 

Matter-2.jpg

What tips/advice would you give to anyone trying to adopt slow fashion and slow living? Any dressing hacks? 

If your anything like me, you may find that there is a lot of physical culling that needs to happen, but even more mental culling. Asking myself the question, “why do you want to buy this?” was so helpful. Most of the time it turned out I was purchasing items to satisfy someone else's option or expectation of me. So my advice for people starting out is this; invite things into your life that make YOU happy and remove the things that don’t bring you joy. My favourite dressing hack is to pick a colour theme and stick with it! Then all of your items will flow together and you can mix and match to your hearts content! 


Follow Keira at @keiramary_ .