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Switching to a more sustainable lifestyle should not happen overnight, it is a journey.
I probably should have made this one of my first post, but just like you, I am gathering my barring at something new, blogging.
Anyway, This week I wanted to share with you some ways to ease into a zero waste/more sustainable life style. This is not something that is going to happen in a day. The zero wasters you see on Instagram have likely been on their zero waste journey for some time now.
If you go through your house and throw away all the plastic, it is just adding more toxins to the landfill sooner. Plastic last a long time, so use it until you cannot anymore. One area that you will want to keep plastic out of is your kitchen. A lot of plastic contains chemicals, that when heated up, can containment your food and make you sick. If you must use plastic in your kitchen, make sure that you never heat food in it.
Instead of plastic, buying some glass reusable containers is a great first addition to your zero waste collection. I have about 20 different glass tube-a-wares now and I love each and every one of them. I will admit that most of them I received from my Grandfather after he passed away, but these containers are usually not that expensive. Now I do still have three plastic containers that I use in my kitchen. They are really small ones and show no sign of aging so I cannot bare to throw them out. I use them to store sauces in when I need to take them on the go.
You can get a complete set from amazon here 🙂
So switching does not mean ditching. There are tons of cool products out there that people have written rave reviews about that will draw you in, but trust me, wait a while. You likely still have many products in your house that could be replaced with a recyclable one, but if it isn’t worn keep it. This includes things like
… the list goes on.
Instead of spending your money on buying eco-friendly versions of these products, save you money or put it towards something that you might not have any of.
So when going zero waste keep these things in mind:
- Everyone is at a different place in their journey, don’t compare yourself to others. Even if you are only making small changes right now, those small changes matter!
2. When making goals, make sure that they are achievable. I can remember when I started my zero waste journey I told myself I was to go zero waste in a month… not realistic when you are a broke college student living with four other people. When you set unrealistic goals for yourself, you are setting yourself up for failure, don’t do that. Instead, make sure that your goals start out small, like you will only take five minute showers for a week, then push yourself past that first week.
3. When shopping, keep in mind that you don’t wait to replace single use plastic items with more single use plastic items. When you notice your running low on something you use frequently, start doing some research! You will be shocked at the number of eco-friendly alternatives there are to products you use every day. Some of my favorite switches have been:
- Stainless Steel Straws for Plastic ones
- Organic cotton coffee filters for filtered ones
- Cloth napkins for paper towels
- Cut-up old t-shirts for rags
- Twine Sponges for disposable ones – find out how to make your own here!
4. Educate yourself, read all about going zero waste. I take a few minute every day and read some articles or blog post from others on sustainable living and zero waste. People are always coming up with creative new ways to reduce waste, it is amazing. I follow, probably, to many sustainability blogs, but these are my favorites:
- Sustainable Chic – This one is probably one of my favorites just because I have been following her for so long and she lives in Charleston, SC. She is mainly a sustainable fashion blogger, but also babbles in other areas. My favorite thing about her blog is she has a page where you can sustainable brands for almost anything your looking for. Go check her out!
- Selva Beat – This is one of the more trendy blogs that I follow. Right now, I think that their site is currently down, but you can still follow them through their Instagram!
- Eco Warrior Princess – I love this blog because it appeals to the rebellious side of me. This blog has a ton of information about zero waste and sustainability around the world. Constantly being updated, I read this blog often for world sustainability news.
and I leave you with this last tip…
5. Stop using those grocery store plastic bags. You will not regret investing in some reusable grocery bags. I have started up a collect and have about 6 bags now, which is the perfect amount for me.
Plus, some stores, like Target, give you a discount when you bring in your own bag!
I hope that this post has calmed some nerves or encouraged someone to try a sustainable lifestyle.
What have been your favorite sustainable switches? Any that haven’t went well?