I Asked My Eco-Minded Friends Their Best Sustainable Tips…
We now live in a world where the consumers are taking things into their own hands when it comes to the environment. The upcoming generation carries a stress for all the trash and waste that goes on in the world and they are tired of sitting idly by while the big industries continue to pollute. I asked my most eco-conscious friends their number 1 sustainable tip to live by– here’s what they shared.
Many of my eco-thinking allies had similar things to say whether it is reusing, recycling or just refusing altogether, which is often the option we forget. The number one tip repeated was that anything flagged “single-use” is out of fashion. My sustainable living friend Abbie said her best tip for living sustainably “is to stop using single-use plastics. There are so many reusable products out there, water bottles for example. It will not only help save the earth but also your bank account since it can last a long time”. Another said she uses “reusable everything! Ziplock bags, shopping bags, water bottles, and produce bags” are all made with more durable materials that are built to last.
One great tip is to skip the lid if you're taking a coffee to go!
It does seem that saving money and resources can go hand in hand, which is just another great reason to start living sustainably.
Single-use plastics however are not the only culprit. Many friends commented they were cutting down on paper waste at home. Megan stated she loves “using small reusable cloths as paper towels in her kitchen, dryer balls instead of dryer sheets, and a period cup instead of tampons.” She also buys “Who Gives A Crap toilet paper which you can buy in either the 100% recycled [paper] or bamboo option”.
When it comes to waste, physical items are not all we have to worry about. In conversation with ESW Beauty’s founder, Elina Sofia Wang, she shared that she is very mindful when it comes to electricity and water usage. She says she makes “sure to take quicker showers & be very aware to switch off the lights & power” whenever she is leaving the room. Energy consumption is a huge part of our carbon footprint as humans so it is very important to be mindful of.
Lately, my personal sustainable tip is all about food waste. There is something so frustrating about tossing leftovers or ingredients that never get eaten or used. My tip is to make a mindful grocery list when food shopping. Plan your recipes for the week and pick recipes with crossover ingredients. Not only will your weekly menu feel cohesive, but you’ll notice you end up using almost everything!
Young people are leaning towards sustainable living. It appears the next generation is growing up much more environmentally conscious. I polled a small group of about 30 individuals under the age of 30 for their opinion on a few sustainable topics and here’s what they said!
Do you shop second-hand clothing?
79% said they do in fact shop second-hand clothing. This one didn’t surprise me with the growing trend of thrifting and vintage clothing, but whatever the reason, I am happy to see people shopping for pre-owned threads.
If you’d like to shop second-hand, check out this article for the best online sites!
If shopping second hand is not for you, shop mindfully and chose higher quality clothing. Founder, Elina Sofia Wang, shared she is also a conscious shopper and her goal is to reduce the amount of fast fashion she buys. “As I got older, I began to purchase less clothing in frequency & switched to more quality & long lasting options” she explained that “very little gets recycled and most of it ends up in the landfill”. According to Bloomberg, the U.S. throws away up to 11.3 million tons of textile waste annually– around 2150 pieces of clothing per second. Keeping clothing cyclical could be the answer to slowing down the fashion industry.
It’s better to repair than replace
A good motto to keep in mind when you lose a button or your hem begins to unravel.
Do you repurpose things that would typically be discarded as trash?
I am glad to see a high percentage of pollers, 85% to be exact, said they repurpose items that would typically be discarded– it makes me feel much better about my growing glass jar collection.
Are you more likely to shop sustainably packaged items or items without packaging all together?
This question had the highest number of people on board! 88% of those polled would opt for a more eco-conscious packaging. This leads me to believe that more people really are feeling the pressures of their trash contribution.
The results could not be more clear! People want to live sustainably, most just need the tips on how to do it.
One thing I have learned through my own sustainable journey is that everyone is on their own part of that journey and you shouldn’t shame them for their lack of sustainability. Support and encourage your family & friends to start small and make changes where they can!