FRIDAY FOLLOW: Green Girl Leah
CAN YOU TELL ME a little bit about yourself?
My name is Leah and I was born and raised in St. Louis Missouri. I moved out to Southern California for college and studied environmental science and policy. I graduated in 2017 and started working in corporate sustainability communications afterwards and currently work at Patagonia and freelance write!
Is St. Louis a well-equipped city for sustainable living?
I’m based in SB county and it’s pretty sustainable compared to other places. Southern California in general is a little ahead of the curve when it comes to sustainability (other than public transportation). Things could be better but I’ve met more people here that are at least familiar with sustainability.
Have you always been interested in sustainability? when and how did this become a passion for you?
Not exactly, I was always interested in animals and nature but I didn’t have a word for it until high school or college. It started to become a passion after I started taking environmental science classes in school and volunteering in nature. The calmness I felt and the purpose I gained from wanting to protect the environment helped grow my feelings about sustainability.
I see you joined in with the People's March against climate change. Why was this important for you?
I had actually just started my first week at my job and just moved to a new city and decided to hop on a bus at 4am and march haha. I wanted to take to the streets and be part of a movement. Being in that crowd helped solidify that I was doing what I loved.
You talk on your Instagram about the negative impacts of 'fast fashion'. Where do you shop for clothes yourself?
Honestly mostly Goodwill and then Buffalo exchange when I’m feeling fancy! I’ll also occasionally get new clothes from sustainable brands like Christy Dawn or Organic Basics when I know the quality is good and will last.
What/ who inspires you?
I take inspiration from a lot of people and things, because after I went through something really difficult in my early 20’s I realized how all the people around me also had a story and were showing up every day and getting out of bed. Through my own healing, I started seeing strength in everyone around me and the fact that people have been through really hard times and still show up, inspires me tremendously.
What challenges have you faced while trying to live a more mindful life?
In terms of being mindful, my biggest challenge has been not to personalize or over analyze people’s actions. I look inward a lot and am very anxious so I have difficulty separating what is mine to carry and what is not. What emotions are mine and which aren’t my responsibility. I feel this a lot with sustainability or social justice issues too and feel overly responsible to fix everything, but I’ve had to actively work to take a step back and asses what’s in my control.
I notice you also enjoy travel. How do you balance travelling with living sustainably?
I do like to travel and see new things, but I know regardless of how I travel there are negative environmental consequences. I try to only travel with a backpack and also stay in a room in an Airbnb to kind of limit my environmental impact.
Do you have any sustainable beauty tips or must-haves?
Green beauty is great for animals and better for the environment, but it also stops me from breaking out so I love it! I would say, a good green foundation and primer are key. I love Vapour beauty
Where do you hope to see yourself or the world in 10 years time?
This is hard haha, a year ago I would have had bullet points jotted down about some plan or goal, but now I’m really just following things that feel right and listening to my intuition when it comes to the projects I take on. I really hope in 10 years that I can continue to expand my platform, not for myself or my ego, but so I can teach people to be more compassionate to themselves, others, and the earth.
All images have been supplied by the interviewee for sole use in this article.