STORY BY MONICA BADOLIAN, STAFF WRITER
GRAPHIC BY BELLA GARCIA, MANAGING EDITOR
Overconsumption has become a significant cause of why influencers promote products for followers to purchase.
Influencers on platforms like TikTok and Instagram promote dozens of advertisements on their feed to gain more money and fame. With the rise of social media influencers, people’s buying habits have been significantly affected.
When someone sees a famous influencer, such as Bella Porche on Tik Tok, promoting a specific brand, it can create a sense of urgency for this person to purchase that product. Beauty and skincare products, houseware, jewelry, and food lead to overconsumption caused by influencers. Sometimes, people buy an item not because they want it but because a specific influencer has it. As a result, people over consume and do not consider the consequences.
There is no sustainable way to buy on impulse. By wasting money on items that aren’t even used half the time, it is wasteful behavior that harms the environment and the customer. One prime example would be the Stanley tumbler (not the hockey trophy). The Stanley tumbler is an insulated stainless steel cup whose purpose is for people to carry around the cup more easily. Most people say it’s popular because it can keep a drink cold for up to 11 hours and for its design, but once it started going viral on TikTok, almost everyone started to buy one. The tumbler became popular when famous influencers began promoting it in their videos. Popular influencer, JustKass, who has over three million followers, posted a TikTok that went viral for her “army” of Stanley Cups. With more people hopping on the trend, it’s something almost everyone carries.
Oftentimes many influencers promote products that are also bad for the environment. Companies like Shein and Temu are fast fashion brands. For their younger consumers, who feel the need to follow every fashion trend for a low price, are trendy, and are intended to be worn only a few times, and clothes are created inexpensively, by workers who are unpaid and overworked (some even being children). The cheap materials used in this apparel, including polyester and other synthetic materials, are not recyclable, thus they can take up to hundreds of years to degrade in the oceans.
It’s very easy to be influenced in purchasing an item, especially when there’s a celebrity on the screen. But before buying something, people need to consider whether this product is worth it. Is it a necessity or a want, or will it even harm the environment somehow? It can help save the planet and possibly de-influence spending habits.