How To Make Blue Monday Sustainable

How To Make Blue Monday Sustainable

Got the January blues? We understand. After all, we’re the blue company! Meaning we’re dedicated to protecting the ocean through fashion. We believe you can get through Blue Monday by spending more time in nature, taking steps to protect it, and wearing clothing that makes you feel good. Throughout the week of Blue Monday 2023 we’re offering 15% off all sustainable dresses. Use Code DRESS15 at checkout to benefit! 

What Is Blue Monday? 

Interestingly, Blue Monday started life as a PR stunt. Calculated according to a pseudo-scientific formula back in 2005, Blue Monday is meant to be the most depressing day of the year. The weather is bad (in the northern hemisphere), credit card debt is supposedly at its highest, and all we really need is to buy ourselves a nice holiday. Or at least that was what the inventors of Blue Monday, Sky Travel, seem to have been thinking. As many have since pointed out, depression and anxiety don’t really work like that - there is no metric or predictor for when people will be affected by mental illness and nor is buying a holiday likely to help. Even so, Blue Monday has evolved into a genuine phenomenon, still celebrated decades after its inception. 

With that in mind, we invite you to make Blue Monday less about jumping on a jumbo jet, and more about what we can do for the ocean and planet. 

How can immersion in nature improve Mental Health? 

A simple gift you can give yourself is to take a long walk in the woods. In Japan, they’d call this a “forest bath” - a beautiful way of expressing the sense of comfort and refreshment that comes from allowing nature in. Forest-bathing can be led by a meditation guide or can be practiced solo: the intention always being to pay close attention to all the sights, scents, and sounds that make up a densely packed and vibrant woodland ecosystem.

Another idea to get more connected with nature would be to try wild swimming. There are plenty of people who attest to the life-affirming benefits of taking a cold dip in the sea, although it’s certainly not for everyone! Give yourself the right start by reading our mini-guide here. 

While debilitating illnesses like depression and anxiety can’t really be solved in a single stroll or dip in the sea, nature can help to gently lift moods and take you out of a blue spell. According to this report, people who have a strong connection to nature record lower levels of anxiety and depression. 

While the report also finds that such people take more pro-environmental actions, simply being in nature is not necessarily sustainable! So you could go one better by taking part in activities that improve or conserve the environments around you. This will not only get you into nature and introduce you to new people, but make sure you leave the right kind of footprint. 

Other pro-environmental actions you could make this Blue Monday include - 

  • Reducing the amount of single-use plastic you rely on. Check out our whale-printed reusable bottles for help. 
  • Taking part in a beach-clean. Nothing bluer than that!
  • Switching off electronics when not in use. So-called phantom power accounts for around 1% of global CO₂ emissions
  • Post inspiring photos on social media about the ocean. Share your love for the ocean with your community, and help raise awareness of the challenges it faces like plastic pollution, acidification, and biodiversity loss. The ocean was mentioned just twice in the recent COP15 agreement on biodiversity, a huge oversight that we can help to correct.
  • Commit to buying sustainable clothing this year. Say no to fast fashion - if you need new clothing, choose a brand that is taking concrete action against emissions and waste. Like, say, TWOTHIRDS!

Speaking of clothing, did you know that what we wear has an indirect impact on the ocean? It takes a considerable amount of water to make the most commonly found fast fashion materials. In places, chemical clothing dyes flow into river systems untreated. And the high carbon emissions in fashion contribute to decreased planetary health - including ocean acidification. TWOTHIRDS tries to help by monitoring, reducing and offsetting our company footprint, seeking out eco-friendly materials that are plant-based, organic, or recycled (which covers 90% of everything we use), and packaging our clothing in recyclable paper - so as not to contaminate the ocean with plastic. 

Can clothing affect your mood?

Studies about the effect of clothing on the way we feel are surprisingly rare. However, this one from 2012 found that there was a correlation between what women wore and their emotional states. As an example, 62% of women said they’d wear their favourite dress when happy, whereas just 6% said they’d do so when sad. The psychologists concluded that it’d be wise to pick out “happy clothing” whenever we feel unhappy. The clothing we associate with bad moods (and vice versa) may in fact keep us in them, an effect known as enclothed cognition. Scientists from a separate study found that test subjects were more focused and made fewer mistakes when wearing a white coat they believed belonged to a doctor. This suggests that what we wear can help us to think clearer and give us more self-confidence. 

Where does that finally lead us? To the conclusion that Blue Monday can be at least partially relieved both by wearing clothing you love and getting back into nature. To help bring you a little January joy, we’ve offered 15% off our dresses throughout this week. Use code DRESS15 at checkout!