Revelation : Influencers are Sinfluencers

I am about to break a story that's probably been in the making for 2,5 years on why the title of "influencer" needs to be reassessed and repositioned.

This is from a post on my Instagram @circularfashiondetective

The Circular Fashion Detective here. You’re one and only source into the scandalous fashion industry and how to make a positive change through circular fashion.

DETECTED: fashion influencers on social media consistently report fake facts, but their confidence makes their audiences believe these as truthful. This is a massive problem, because as the saying goes: Garbage in, is Garbage out. If we want to actually get to a circular fashion system before the tides will rise, we have to get our facts straight. So the story I am going to share with you today, is that of my past 2,5 years investigating this industry whilst trying to architect a new ecosystem where we meet the needs of all fashion lovers within the means of the planet.

Where to start, is the big question. I guess it makes most sense to start with my own experience with “sustainable fashion” bloggers on Instagram and YouTube. Despite their cute effort to report facts, I know that the majority of them are merely opinions that are not backed by actual scientific evidence. One example of this, is how they explain to their audience why that #Ad piece of trashion (oops, I mean fashion) is more sustainable because it’s made from recycled water bottles.

Now, here is what I have been doing to understand IF there is some value in these claims. The short answer is: there is no value except for that paycheck. The long answer is: these recycled water bottles end up in the washing machine shedding millions of microplastics, which, end up in our drinking water and the fish we eat and what not. #NotSustainable

Those insights come from the Bioengineers, Chemists, Materials Scientists, Environmental Engineers, and the likes whom I’ve been speaking with and reading their peer-reviewed works from.

Unfortunately, the influencer cult is here to stay for the years to come. I am not saying I am against influencers, but it’s just been deeply upsetting to see how consumers like you and I keep being spammed with untruthful facts. In a way this is a form of greenwashing to me. Now, luckily, I see a solution for a brighter future. Basically what we need is to have a strong base of influencers that have the facts right, and that do not shamelessly promote a product they wouldn’t actually use themselves (we all know the type). SO WHAT IF… we celebrate Scientists as the new influencers, or as I coin them “Scienfluencers™”. Now I know that some of my readers are scientists themselves, and therefore I can hopefully inspire you a tiny little bit on how to become a Scienfluencer yourself (this is very much in “just from the top of my head” mode).

How to be a Scienfluencer™

Congrats, you are a legit scientist and now you are considering to inspire an audience with great stories based on actual facts, such as found by marine biologists while collecting data on whales and why they are important to help reverse global warming. Next, you team up with a brand that strongly aligns with your values (purpose driven, ethical practices through and through respecting planet and people equally). You want this brand to have a very attractive range of products in order to appeal to the fashion forward audience.

Following, you build your following through for example a YouTube channel, or, hey, a newsletter like I’m doing! I’ll be the first to subscribe if you do!

As always, I’m looking forward to receive your feedback. If you know any Scienfluencers in the making, why not share this newsletter with them ;-)

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XOXO

The Circular Fashion Detective

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