13 Feb Zero Waste; Small Lifestyle Changes that Make a Big Impact
If you have committed to sustainable New Year’s Resolutions, it is time to evaluate and see the changes you have made. Have you been replacing your old products with more sustainable alternatives? Have you been mindful of the waste you are producing? Have you ditched the single-use plastic? If you have not succeeded in your sustainable New Year’s resolutions, have just recently decided to make a change, need a gentle prompt in the right direction or are feeling stuck in your zero waste journey, here are some ways you can be more mindful in your life and make the change to live an eco-friendlier lifestyle:
Day to day changes; It is the small things that matter the most. Invest in the following items: reusable water bottle, reusable coffee cup, reusable cutlery and reusable straw, and carry them with you so you do not get stuck needing to purchase single-use plastic.
Bathroom routine; from bamboo toothbrushes, non-disposable razors and eco-friendlier skincare and cosmetics- there are many changes you can make in your bathroom routine that can lead to living a more zero-waste lifestyle. Purchase skin care products in bars or reusable containers that you can get filled at bulk stores or eco-friendly stores once they are finished. Avoid products that contain toxic chemicals, excess packaging and microbeads. If you feel so inclined, you can also make your natural products as well using ingredients like oatmeal, honey, avocado etc. Switching to toilet paper made from recyclable materials and wrapped in paper rather than plastic is also an eco-friendlier alternative.
Household Cleaning Products; Much like your bathroom products, cleaning products can also be purchased at bulk buy stores, where you can fill up jars and bottles. Eco-friendly stores generally stock products that are better for the environment as well, and just like the bathroom products, cleaning products can be made with household ingredients as well. White vinegar, lemon juice, bicarb soda and oils like eucalyptus and tea tree oil also make great cleaning alternatives. That way you do not need to buy products with toxic chemicals, that run down the waterways as well as come in packaging that goes straight to landfill. There are also brands of items like washing powder that are eco-friendlier and often come in cardboard rather than plastic.
From the grocery store to your pantry; reusable produce bags and carry bags are the biggest change you can make to your shopping routine. With plastic shopping bags no longer being allowed to be given out for free in most places in the country, bringing your bags will save you money as well. Bring your produce bags to fill, or if your store allows it, you can even use jars to fill up products to avoid packaging. Shopping locally and seasonally means your food has also travelled less to get there, so it has less of a carbon footprint.
Your lifestyle may not change overnight, but these are just some simple ways to contribute to living to a more zero waste lifestyle. You may not get everything perfect every time but keep being more mindful about how you shop. The more people take steps to live an eco-friendlier lifestyle, no matter how small those steps are, the more impact we will have on the planet as a whole. Voting with your dollars for a more sustainable lifestyle contributes to the growing consciousness that we, in fact, care about what happens to our planet and that makes the biggest statement of them all.