Lists, Tips

Going Green: For Beginners

“Going Green” it’s the trendy thing to do now, right? Well it shouldn’t be, it should be daily life for us, not just a trendy passing fad. There are simple steps we can all take to cut waste in our lives with minimal effort. You don’t have to go vegan, trade your car for a bike or go zero waste to make a difference.

I was someone who thought it took a lot of work to “become green friendly” but there are a lot of small easy ways that add up to make a big impact. Here are 13 easy ways I am cutting waste. Most of these I currently do, numbers 4, 9 and 13 are works in progress.

  1. Recycling- Now this may seem like a no brainer, but how many of you actually recycle? According to a 2015 study only 34 percent of Americans recycle.
  2. Dryer sheets- I have traded in my dryer sheets for reusable wool dryer balls. Dryer sheets are one of those little costs that add up and you don’t think about. Dryer balls are a one time expense and last a long time. Most boxes will come with 4-6 dryer balls and you only need 2-3 per load so you will have a spare set. You can also split a box with someone like I did with my mom! Adding essential oil will give you a nice fragrance just like a dryer sheet. Along with the eco benefits dryer balls can cut down your drying time by up to 40 percent!
  3. Reusable Food Storage- give up those plastic bags and switch reusable storage. I have a mix of glass and plastic. Even though I’m still using plastic it’s not ended up in a landfill.
  4. No Plastic Wrap- again ditch the one use plastics! You can either use your reusable storage or a reusable wrap like bees wax. Bees wax wrap is a wax covered fabric you can wrap your foods in like a plastic wrap. Either tie a sting to keep close or gently use the heat fork your hand/friction to heat the wrap creating a seal.
  5. Switch bills to E-statements- switching statements over to paperless to cut down on paper waste. Plus you will see less of what I call sad mail. 😂
  6. Buy/donate- shopping and donating to thrift stores. A couple times a year I go through my belongings and donate things I don’t use. I also shop at thrift stores or resale shops for things we can use and don’t need new. Like my “new” desk, only $30 from a resale store and soils wood unlike most desks you find in stores these days.
  7. Wash Dishes- washing dishes by hand cuts down on your energy usage. Which is especially nice for the high energy bill months.
  8. Shopping Bags- I love my reusable shopping bags! They hold a lot more than plastic grocery bags. Also recycle those plastic bags you have at participating stores, most grocery stores in my area have a receptacle for plastic grocery bags.
  9. Cloth Napkins/Papertowel- stop wasting money and paper towels! Switch to cloth! It’s an easy switch, plus there are endless possibilities for colors and patterns.
  10. Menstrual Products- ditch the disposables and make the switch to reusable. Menstrual cups and cloth pads are a budget friendly eco safe switch! I will never go back to disposables after two years of using reusable products.
  11. Power Strips- use power strips to easily turn off devices you aren’t using and save energy.
  12. DIY- from baby food to beauty products there are a lot of simple things you can make at home. Making your own products not only cuts down waste but saves you money!
  13. Reusable straw- plastic straw waste is a HUGE problem. Every restaurant throws away thousands of straws a day which end up in landfills and our oceans after what 30 minutes of use?! Go without or use a reusable straw.

There you go! 13 easy ways anyone can go green and do their part to save resources. Most of these changes you will hardly notice! I’d love to hear easy changes you’ve made to your lives that decrease your waste.

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