A Very Modern Role Model: Carla DiBello On How To Marry Sustainability And Style

BY Carla DiBello / Nov 4 2018 / 16:28 PM

"With so many incredible brands to choose from, it’s becoming easier and easier to maintain your own sense of style while using your purchase power for good"

A Very Modern Role Model: Carla DiBello On How To Marry Sustainability And Style
Ryan West
Carla wears L’agence jeans, vest and top, with Gianvito Rossi shoes.

One of the things about consciously working on yourself is that no matter what you’re focused on, self-work tends to bleed into other areas of your life. Ever since I integrated the concept of self-work into my life, I’ve started to see the bigger picture in everything.

Last month I talked about how fashion can be a powerful tool for communication and self-respect. But it extends even further. I used to see fashion as more of an indulgence. But the more I look at the industry as a whole, the more I have seen how it can be a powerful tool for change. It’s incredible how just a few small changes can make an enormous difference.I thought I’d share some of the little changes I’ve made over the years and their benefits.

Treat Your Shopping Bag Like An It-Bag

Valentino Bag

Bag Dhs3,450, Valentino

Considering that about a trillion single-use plastic bags are used each year, (almost two million each minute), bringing your own shopping bag with you when you shop can actually make a massive difference. In fact, in one year, it can easily save your own household from wasting over 1,000 plastic bags. The trick, however, is to find one you love so much that you actually remember to take it with you. I like to shop for a shopping bag similar to how I select a purse. It has to be a coveted one, durable, and of course, it has to go with my wardrobe. I also try to leave it in my car.

Make Drinking Water Look Good

S'well - Water Bottle

Water bottle, Dhs90, S'Well

One of my biggest beauty secrets is to drink copious amounts of water. It single-handedly makes the biggest difference to my skin, my fitness level, and my overall well-being. But similarly to shopping bags, remembering to drink enough water is a lot easier when it comes in pretty packaging. My top brand of choice is S’well, as the styles are sleek and sophisticated, and they come in a range of sizes.

Personalise Your Coffee

Kate Spade - Coffee Cup

Coffee cup, Dhs66, Kate Spade New York at Shopbop

Once I wrapped my head around the concept of investing in good looking, reusable items, I started looking at other areas I could reduce my carbon footprint. I love getting coffee on the go, for example, but I know those disposable coffee cups add up, similar to plastic bags. And just like shopping bags, I knew if I found a keep-cup that matched my style, I’d naturally want to use it. Plus, it’s just a bonus that a reusable cup will most likely keep your coffee warm for a lot longer.

Shop Vintage

Vintage Rolex

Watch, Dhs10,280, Vintage Rolex at The List

There’s so much to love about vintage. When you shop vintage, you are helping to minimise manufacturing waste and pollution. But aside from being an eco-friendly option, it’s also more unique. You’re less likely to run into someone wearing the same thing and it also almost never loses its value. In fact, if you select your pieces well, there’s a chance they could even go up in value.

Support Brands With Greater Purpose

Earrings - Usfuur

Earings, Dhs900, Usfuur

With so many incredible brands to choose from, it’s becoming easier and easier to maintain your own sense of style while using your purchase power for good. I love Cesta Collective to-die-for accessories made from renewable materials by artisans in various parts of the world, as well as Dubai-based jewellery brand Usfuur, by designer Yara Tlass, which donates a percentage of sales to support refugee communities. And I really admire what sustainable brands such as Reformation and Stella McCartney are doing, too. Opting for a piece from these labels over fast-fashion is both a win for your wardrobe and the world

From the November 2018 Issue of Harper’s Bazaar Arabia


Click play to find out about the top beauty brands who are cutting down on plastic.