8 Ways To Be Environmentally Friendly
Hey Y’all, it’s Erin.
Every January, many of us make pledges about ways to improve ourselves, our lives or overall choices.
Jess gave some great tips on sticking to your New Year’s Resolutions, and inspired me to share my own.
My focus for the year is on reducing my carbon footprint.
I’m going to share 8 ways to be environmentally friendly.
This is the blueprint for my New Year’s Resolution that can serve as a guide for any of you looking for ways to be environmentally friendly in your own home.
Before I get started with this list, it only makes sense for me to start with Cloth Diapers.
If you haven’t considered cloth diapers you can read more about why parents choose Lil Helper Cloth Diapers and we even offer a trial diaper if you’re looking for an affordable way to give cloth diapers a whirl!
Without further ado, here are 8 ways to be environmentally friendly!
1. No Straws/Reusable Straws
Have you seen the sea turtle video? It’s heartbreaking and devastating to watch.
One time use, disposable plastic straws are harmful and wasteful. Many businesses and areas have pledged to no longer serve plastic straws.
Going strawless is one of the best ways to be environmentally friendly with your drinks. However, I’m going to be honest for a moment.
I love straws. I don’t want to give them up.
So, the best solution for this is to get a reusable straw.
I’ve got a portable one that I can keep in my purse when I’m on the go, and have several at home that I can use. It still satisfies my need for a straw, but is a way more environmentally friendly swap.
2. Family Cloth/Recycled Toilet paper
This is one of the big swaps for me this year in my list of ways to be environmentally friendly.
I switched to cloth wipes for my daughter’s diaper changes, and then thought “I can use cloth wipes for me too,” especially after I’d suggested it as one of the 7 ways to use cloth diapers after potty training.
I keep a wetbag on the toilet paper holder to put the used wipes in and keep the clean wipes in a basket on the back of the toilet.
For the “public” bathroom in my house, I do keep regular toilet paper for guests to use. I’ve just switched to a brand such as Seventh Generation that makes their rolls from recycled paper!
If family cloth isn’t one of the ways to be environmentally friendly that you can get behind, for sure give the recycled paper option a go!
3. Composting/Compostable Trash Bags/Going Bagless
Composting is a great way to make your own natural fertilizer for your own garden/flower beds. On top of that, composting keeps more waste out of our landfills. Our food waste rots in landfills without the proper environment to break down.
In addition to our food waste, there are the trash bags that we use to send our trash to the landfills.
Plastic bags end up in our oceans, harming wildlife and don’t break down in the landfills.
In addition to that, the production of plastic bags creates a lot of toxic chemicals that are entering our environment. You can read more about it here.
Going bagless would easily be the best of the ways to be environmentally friendly with your waste. You can line the bins with newspaper or just leave it completely empty.
This option does require you to clean your bins regularly (although if you’re also composting it will help reduce some of the yuck in your bin.)
If bagless sounds like too much, you can purchase compostable trash bags to line your bins. This is what I’ve started doing for now!
4. Beeswax Wraps or Silicone Bags
Beeswax wraps are a great way to eliminate the plastic wrap that we use to cover our left over foods.
They can be used to cover the dish you’re keeping food in or you can just put the food directly in the wrap!
They are great at home or on the go! Instead of getting a styrofoam to go container, you can wrap the food up in the beeswax wrap by itself or carry an extra container with you to bring your food home in.
Beeswax wraps can be purchased or a wonderful DIY project. Check out a tutorial here!
They also sell silicone “zipper” bags that you can use in place of disposable plastic bags.
Both of these options allow you to be more environmentally friendly, without giving up the convenience of their disposable counterparts.
5. Cloth Paper Towels/Napkins
This was another suggestion for ways to use cloth diaper inserts outside of cloth diapering.
But, there’s soooo many cute ways to have a paperless kitchen.
You can have a decorative basket of cloth towels or napkins on your counter.
There’s also tons of options on Etsy for having a roll of cloth paper towels. They have snaps that allow them to be kept together and will still fit on your paper towel holder.
You can have a wetbag in your kitchen to keep your used towels and napkins in until you’re ready to wash them!
6. Reusable Cloth Grocery and Produce Bags
Of all the suggestions on this list, this is one of the easiest ways to be environmentally friendly.
Using cloth bags for your shopping keeps the more plastic bags from ending up in our oceans and landfills.
I keep them in my trunk for unexpected shopping trips, and put them next to the front door after I bring my stuff in so that I remember to put them back in the car.
7. Reusable Coffee Cup/ Water Bottles
This is another one of the easiest ways to be environmentally friendly.
Bottled water creates a tremendous amount of waste for the environment, and isn’t exactly too friendly towards your wallet. Using your own water bottle is a simple swap that can make a big difference!
Water doesn’t have to be the only beverage you’re being more environmentally conscious with.
Bringing your own cup when you get a coffee helps keep disposable coffee cups that can’t be recycled out of the trash!
Lots of places even offer a discount for bringing a personal cup!
8. Menstrual Cups/Cloth Pads
Last on the list of ways to be environmentally friendly is when Aunt Flo comes to visit.
You can purchase reusable menstrual cups or cloth pads for that time of the month.
There are tons of options that will come up with a quick google search. I used this quiz to pick the one I’m using!
Both of these options will save you loads of money as well as keeping you from throwing (or flushing) waste away each month.
If these options are a little much of a switch for you right now, try using tampons without an applicator for less waste.
There you have it! Those are the 8 ways to be environmentally friendly that I’m implementing this year.
Which ones are you going to try? Are there ways that you’re going green that you didn’t see on this list?
Share them with us below!