With today being Earth Day, I can’t think of a better time to spear head an eco-friendly lifestyle change. I understand fully how overwhelming it can be to want to be green, reduce your environmental impact and not know where to start. Honestly a few years ago the only thing I knew I could do was recycle…but that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
I made this list of 50 things you can start today, tomorrow, & this week that will help. At first it may seem like you have to remind yourself of these things often, but after just a little bit of routine practice, it will become second nature.
Reduce your environmental impact right now with these changes.
Before you finish reading this..would you do me a favor? Share this. Email it to a friend, share it on Instagram, Facebook, Linked-in…or Pin it on Pinterest so others can reference it later. That’s how was make change, by spreading the word!
Be a conscious consumer
- support companies that are eco-friendly (here are 7 you may not know about!)
- If you buy new, buy products that will last for a very long time. Think glass bottles, not plastic, and clothing made from sustainable resources
- Simple buy less – before you buy something, ask yourself if it’s truly a need, and if it’s not, think about the impact of that product.
- Buy used – everything from used cars, furniture and clothing. This even means adopting a rescue dog, not shopping from a breeder.
- When you buy a new electronic device, find a place to responsibly recycle your old one. (check out where you can do this here.)
- Never use one-time-use plastic bags. Buy quality reusable shopping bags – but don’t just use them at the grocery store, take them to the mall, the pharmacy, the home good store, use them for everything.
- enjoy coffee out? buy a quality reusable mug and bring it with you when you get coffee
- stop using straws – even plant-based ones. Buy your own reusable straws and take them everywhere with you.
- Before you grocery shop for new food, plan meals around all the food that is about to go bad or spoil. leave nothing unused! (safely!)
- Buy less food than you think you need. Just like packing for a vacation, we tend to buy more than we can eat – especially fresh produce.
- Store your food in non-plastic containers like cloth bags, mason jars, bamboo containers, etc.
- Ignore sell-by, use-by and best-by dates. There are better ways to tell if food has gone bad, use your best judgement but this is just one way to make people buy more more often.
- Fruit about to go bad? Freeze it right away! if you chop it up and freeze it, you can use it down the road for smoothes or desserts.
- Start a compost in your yard for your old food – this is ideal if you garden too!
- ditch aluminum foil and switch to reusable silicone wraps
- use real plates and silverware, not plastic.
- if you have to use plastic ones, buy recyclable ones that are also made from recycled material
- stop buying plastic water bottles or drinks that come in plastic bottles at all
- Drive less! Simply put. If you can walk somewhere – then walk. Use a bicycle too!
- Take public transit when you can.
- If you do have to drive and it’s possible, carpool. Why not ride share on your commute?
- Ditch one far-away vacation for a closer one (not all vacations, but just one a year close by will make an impact)
- Switch to an electric vehicle
- Change all your light bulbs to LED bulbs. (they’ve come a long way, trust me!)
- Install low-flow shower heads and toilets.
- Use a rain-water basin to collect rain water – use that for outside chores like washing your car or watering plants.
- Seal your windows yearly to ensure best insulation.
- Insulate your home with green material
- Wash your clothes in cold water (you never need hot water if you have the proper soap)
- Dry your clothes on a line instead of an electric dryer
- Install solar panels and use solar panel charged outdoor lights
- Invest in a tankless water heater
- buy used furniture
- when renovating, use eco-friendly materials like bamboo or cork floors, low VOC paint, and instead of buying new, mend what you can.
Beauty + Cleaning
- Buy cruelty free and chemical free makeup, face-wash, shampoo, etc.
- Make your own laundry detergent or use natural soap nuts
- use every last drop of your products – no shame in cutting open the tube or bottle to get everything you paid for!
- ditch cotton balls and use reusable cotton rounds
- use products that come in glass instead of plastic (if it’s an option)
- buy recycled or tree-free toilet paper
- use washable rags to clean your house instead of paper towels
- clean with chemical-free cleaners. Using simply vinegar and water works wonders.
- use loose leaf tea with a reusable tea strainers instead of plastic wrapped tea bags
- ditch the Keurig or pot coffee. Use pour over or french press – trust me, it even tastes better.
- switch to coconut or bamboo sponges instead of plastic/rubber ones
- What’s not to love about local? Support local business more!
- shop at your local farmers market
- start a small garden, even an herb garden outside your kitchen window is perfect.
- shop at your local flea markets, thrift shops and yard sales.
- attend local events and support the community
To make this even easier for you, I compiled a list of products I mention in this list on my Amazon storefront. You may think this sounds backwards..i’m telling you to shop. But the lesson is; purchase smartly once instead of using negatively hundreds of times.
Remember to share, and remember that every day is Earth Day !