With an influx of people opting to stay in over the last year due to the pandemic, the earth has shown signs of much-needed R&R, from clearer waters to purer air. However, simply staying home isn’t a long-term fix to ensure that we do our part on living sustainably.
Green living can seem daunting and even trendy or overly-expensive, but with these useful and cost-friendly tips to embrace a more eco-conscious lifestyle, we can keep the sustainable-living momentum going within the walls of our own home, one small step at a time!
In the Kitchen
When it comes to the rules of reduce, reuse, and recycle, you can do a majority of the heavy lifting in the kitchen! Mindful living in your most-used space doesn’t have to happen all at once. By implementing gradual shifts like these, you’ll be slicing and dicing your way toward a more eco-friendly lifestyle in no time.
Shop for Groceries at the Farmer’s Market – Not only does this support local agriculture, but farmer’s markets sell fruits and vegetables during their peak growing season, which means you’ll be buying the freshest food! Farmers who sell their produce at local markets tend to minimize the waste, pollution, and use of synthetic pesticides created and used by larger corporations.
Subscribe to an “Ugly Produce Service” – Did you know that nearly half of produce in the U.S. is thrown out because it’s not aesthetically pleasing and therefore deemed ineligible to sell in stores? A popular subscription service that’s offered by multiple brands allows you to personalize your own delivery of produce that still tastes great, but would have otherwise been thrown out because of its appearance. Bonus – you can get this produce for a fraction of the price while minimizing food waste!
Grow your Own Herbs – Fresh herbs are a great way to spruce up any recipe, but they usually come in single-use plastic packaging and go bad relatively quickly; which is bad news, since you usually only need a little bit for one recipe. If you use fresh herbs regularly, consider growing your own basil, thyme, rosemary, or parsley in potted soil to reach for whenever you want without a trip to the store!
Minimize Your Use of Paper and Plastics – A tale as old as time, things like straws, plastic wrap, and disposable bags can build up waste rather quickly. There are more sustainable ways to store, cover, and transport your food than to break out wasteful, single-use plastics. All of these frequently-used kitchen items are available as reusable goods, from bamboo or hydroknit paper towels to silicone snack bags, beeswax food wraps, and cotton bowl covers.
In the Laundry Room & Bathroom
Laundry rooms and bathrooms are the culprit for a lot of waste with disposable dryer sheets and product packaging that tends to be tossed without regard for how to responsibly recycle. Embrace these subtle tweaks to your daily routine to minimize waste in these areas, and make laundry day and bath-time more enjoyable!
Wool Dryer Balls – Opting for wool dryer balls eliminates your need for the never-ending stream of disposable dryer sheets. Not only do these aesthetic wool balls eliminate a ton of waste, but they are ultra-absorbent, which means they cut drying time by 10-25 percent!
Recycle Responsibly – Sound redundant? Well, did you know you can recycle more than just your water bottles and soda cans? Research how and where you can recycle frequently-purchased items, like shaving cream, razors and razor blades, oral care products, shampoo and conditioner bottles, and other personal care items.
Spring for Sustainable Fabrics – Select fabrics like hemp or organic cotton when shopping for fresh bath or hand towels. The growing and production process of organic hemp uses little-to-no pesticides or damaging chemicals, which has a lower impact on the environment than most traditional fabrics. *bamboo**
Reusable Cotton Rounds – When it comes to building a sustainable lifestyle, sometimes the smallest changes can make the biggest difference! Opting for reusable organic cotton rounds or bamboo makeup remover pads instead of disposable rounds or cotton balls can take you from everyday waste to minimal excess in no time. They’re also chemical-free, which is gentler on your skin and body.
Sustainability tip: got a bin full of used cotton balls and disposable rounds? Embrace your green thumb and compost them to keep them from going to waste!
In Your Bedroom
Thrift Your Apparel – Thrift shops have become a hot spot for one-of-a-kind clothing and funky finds, but shopping second hand isn’t just the trendy thing to do for fashion’s sake. Embracing once-loved apparel and shoes is both great news for your budget and the planet, as it discourages waste and frequently-changing fast fashion trends.
Nearly 10.5 million tons of clothing ends up in landfills per year in the U.S. alone, so by supporting local thrift stores, you can embrace a cost-friendly approach to eco-conscious living.
Eco-friendly Organization – Rattan storage bins are a trendy and eco-friendly option for home organization. It is an easily renewable resource, and sustainable storage bins are easy to find at any local grocery, craft, or home goods stores.
Make the Switch to LED Light Bulbs – LED bulbs are more energy efficient than traditional filament lightbulbs, as they use anywhere from 25-80% less energy than regular bulbs and typically last longer. Even if you just replace a couple of your most-used lightbulbs, the switch can significantly help reduce your carbon footprint as well as save on your energy bill every month!
In Your Living Area
Decorate in Sustainable Style – Opt for eco-friendly furniture materials when it’s time for an interior upgrade. Rattan, acacia wood, solid pine wood, bamboo, and recycled steel are all eco-conscious choices for furnishing your living room, home office, or bedroom. Walker Edison offers plenty of pieces that are constructed with eco-conscious materials that have been sustainably sourced from renewable forests.
Donate Used Décor – Look to vintage shops, antique stores, and thrifted goods for your vases, lamps, books, and other accent pieces to tie your room together in unique style. Second hand stores offer styles that are both vintage and up-to-date with modern interior trends, and you’ll have décor that no one else will!
Once you’ve had enough use out of your furniture and décor, rather than toss it in the trash bin, donate it to your local thrift store or consignment shop if it upholds their donation standards.
How do you embrace sustainable style and mindful living in your own home? We’d love to take some pointers! Show us your eco-conscious home hacks and tag @walkeredisonco on Instagram!