We are in no way eco warriors, vegan or even vegetarian (even though R1 is considering it), we merely care about the planet and would like to make an impactful change in our lives in any small way, which we hope will make a difference. Too many people feel like this isn’t an issue that affects them or isn’t their concern, but we are ALL taking up space on the planet, we are all using its resources, therefore it’s all our collective responsibility to do something about ensuring its protection. On this week’s blog post, we share the steps we are taking in our daily lives to be and become more eco-conscious, read on and see if there are any steps you can implement in your own lives!
While I attest that no matter how many eco choices we may make, when it comes to major conglomerates and their damage to the planet, we know that we are minute in the cogs of change, but despite that- it doesn’t mean that we don’t have a responsibility to do our part. Another thing we recognize, is the fact that to be able to sit back and access and have the ability and “time” to make these changes is a privilege. Living in a 1st world country, we are one of the biggest consumers of things/stuff and we are also some of the biggest wasters, so that being said- privileged or not we aim in some small way to do our part.
- bamboo/electric toothbrush/ bamboo toothpicks *
- this was an easy change, R1 had been thinking about it and then took the jump while at a Vegan Food Festival in Leeds and hasn’t looked back since-once I’m done with the brush I remove all the bristles and use the bamboo to hold up any small plants that are beginning to fall over. I’m reusing something so simple, and it makes such a huge impact on helping to keep my plants alive and blooming!
- shampoo bar *
- I was a bit skeptical about this at first, but mostly because it’s like; why didn’t we think of this sooner? I was concerned the rubbing of the bar on my natural hair would cause damage to the curls, but it’s not a good enough reason not to make the swap, I simply lather my hands and not my hair directly. Presto! The Body Shop have great smells and many local brands and artisan shops have started to carry shampoo bars.
- turn the water off when you brush your teeth or lather your body, shower together 😉
- I am actively working on this one, because I do enjoy standing under the running water, but I also don’t need to do that, or I can do it less often. I’m always thinking about how incredibly lucky we are to have water at our instant disposal.
- try to thrift shop where possible
- I actually enjoy looking around charity shops, but I tend to buy things for the house or decorative things, not clothing so much, but I have always fully supported saving clothes from going to landfills, recycling clothes has always been something our mother has done and we do the same. I have seen some really unique finds in thrift stores, so I need to take more advantage of them!
- start reducing and composting food waste *
- I have started a compost, I will admit that I’m not 100% sure I know what I’m doing, but it’s not going in the bin…so that’s a win, right?
- instead of throwing things out, can they be upcycled? Given a new life? *
- This is one of my favourite things to do, because I enjoy a good DIY. Moving into my house, instead of throwing away the things the prev owners left, I have tried to find a way to give it a new life, currently turning the back of an old wooden deck chair into a piece of wall art, (I’ll post on our Instagram how that turns out) I’ve spray painted an old English mirror, polished a silver spoon and used it as a prop in my flat lays. I resuse old jam jars, and put my overnights oats in them for breakfast and if the jar is an odd shape, I use it to store things. Everything can be reused in some way, so before you throw it out, think about what you can do/use it for.
- reducing/banning straws
- If you have a medical or physical reason why you must use plastic straws then by all means, but for the rest of us who merely use it out of convenience, we need to think about using other options or simply declining straws. I bought a metal straw last year and if I’m being perfectly honest, I’ve used it twice. One tip though, be sure to get a cleaner, so that you can get all the dirt out of the inner tube, there is nothing worse than rejected food/germs in a straw. Something I’ve noticed from the rare times that I get fast food, is that a few of the main chains have begun to use “paper-based” straws instead of the classic plastic type. They seem to be more advanced and on top of things that I am!
We’d be lying if we said changing the every day choices you had to make was easy and though there are things that can be super easy to transition into, there are still things that will require more of a conscious change in choices and behaviours.
- buying local/organic/seasonal produce
- This is something I try to do often, but I recognise that you have to have a bigger wallet in order do this or you have to actively seek out these shops as they aren’t on our every day radar. Personally, at the moment if I we’re to exclusively shop at my local shop, I would still need to make a trip to the shop, because it doesn’t have all the ingredients I need, and so I need to make a trip to a bigger store and thus undermining the whole thing, but it’s all about small conscious choices and steps.
- swapping to a menstrual cup instead of disposable pads/tampons *
- I am all for trying this option and will be purchasing my 1st menstrual cup in the next few weeks, the one thing that did surprise me was the coast in order to initially began on this period journey, so when we talk about period wealth, I accept that as an option it is one of the most expensive initially, but the benefits will be seen at a later date, I’ll let you know how I get on.
- commuting/car sharing
- this isn’t an option for everyone, with my recent move to the North of the UK, where things/places are a bit more spaced out and public transport isn’t as “frequent”, you kinda need a car to get to any decent places, but that’s not necessarily very eco-friendly and to be honest, when it came to buying a car I didn’t have the budget needed to buy a car that would be good for the environment. That being said, whenever I’m getting together with friends, we always travel together in one car or look into travelling by train (but living in the countryside it is not always feasible).
- reduce use of single use plastics
- more and more places are popping up where they allow you to bring your own containers and fill up with products. Coffee shops offer a cheaper price if you use a reusable cup, some places even allow for you to bring your own container to put food in. And I get it, it’s not sexy to bring your own container to places, but seeing the amount of animals dying with stomachs full of plastic, ain’t so hot either. Personally, I am trying to make more specific choices about where I shop and what I buy; though fruits and vegetables and your weekly shop might initially cost more, it is reducing the number of plastic bottles and tubs we are throwing away, so that cost is worth it in the long run.
Are there any swaps you have made which has really made a difference in your life? What steps are you making to be more eco-conscious? Let us know!