6 Ultimate Zero Waste Tips
You may be thinking that trying out the Zero Waste lifestyle might be too hard or complicated. Therefore, for the sake of time, you might just pass even on the thought of it. However, I am here to show you how easy it actually is! And that you may already be doing these things at home (give yourself a big pat on the back)!
Going Zero Waste is not an absolute but rather a goal to work towards. This term was originated for waste management within factories in 2001. Overtime, this term was adopted as a lifestyle within the environmentalist movement. In short, zero waste aims to: send nothing to the landfill, reduce our over consumption of products, recycle plastics/metal/glass/cardboard, donate or giveaway clothing and other items we no longer need, compost, be self-sufficient, and reuse things as much as possible.
Below are 6 Zero Waste Tips to help you be more eco-conscious in the day to day. These tips illustrate how easy little changes that we do on a daily basis can help save our planet, animals, and of course – us. It also shows you that working towards zero waste is possible and attainable. Hopefully this article will inspire you to try something new!
Ask For Paper Bags When Grocery Shopping Online
I rely on ClickList for the moments when I do not have time to spend walking around the grocery store. When I shop, I specifically ask in the comment boxes that all groceries be put into paper bags. I also ask that anything from the deli or from produce are also put into paper bags or compostable to-go containers. And did you know that mostly all paper bags are both recyclable and compostable? This makes zero waste online shopping much more feasible.
Donate Your Old Clothes Or Give Them Away
When is the last time you gave your closet a hard look? I bet you can find items in there that you haven’t worn in years, don’t fit, or that you are hanging onto for sentimental reasons. Sadly, over time people discard these clothes to landfills instead of donating them to charities who will actually use them or giving them away to friends and loved ones. It is estimated that about 70 pounds of textiles per person are thrown into landfills each year. Pay it forward and give your old clothes to people who need them.
Make The Switch To Bamboo Toothbrushes
Did you know that it takes approximately 400 years for a plastic toothbrush to decompose? And that they won’t decompose at all when placed into landfills? Lastly, that toothbrushes break down into microplastics that poison our land and food supply? I didn’t. And I wanted to vomit after finding this out. A good option to switch to is a compostable bamboo toothbrush with plant-based castor bean oil bristles.
Buy Natural Materials Over Synthetic
Synthetic clothing releases not only plastic microfibers into the waterways when washed, but also outgasses chemicals when heat is applied to them. This means drying them, leaving clothes in the sun, or even simply wearing them causes this reaction to occur. When you wear these clothes the heat from your body outgasses the chemicals manufactures used to make the material into clothing that remains in the fabric. So this means every time you wear your polyester running gear or favorite nylon dress (all plastic clothing) your body is absorbing chemicals. Opting for natural fibers that are biodegradable and healthier such as hemp, linen, cotton, silk, and bamboo are safer options.
Save Money And Quit Your Trash Service
This might sound “out there”, but you will be surprised how easy this can be done and how much money it will save you per year. We have been without trash service since 2012. How do we do that? While we were living in Colorado, Summit County had a free service where you could bring recyable and compostable items. On top of that, my husband’s work allowed him to use the dumpster for trash. When we moved to Washington, we were blessed with the ability to take trash and recyabling to a local church for free when needed. Ask around your local community, you might be surprised what resources you have. Also, you can also take small paper bags full of landfill items and drop them off in public garbage cans in parking lots or on sidewalks when you go shopping. Yes, we do that too. Just be sure to recycle and compost as much as you can before throwing things away 🙂
Buy Clothes From Thrift Stores
I will be the first to admit that I never liked this idea. I had this irrational fear that some of the clothes for sale were clothes that people died in. Yes, ridiculous, also maybe true. However, once I met my husband many moons ago, I over came this fear. I realized quickly that I could get high quality fabrics, brands, and vintage clothing at an insanely cheap price. I also realized how I had fallen prey to the consumerist trap of having to buy new clothes at the start of every season. And buy too many clothes at that. Save some money, get great clothes, and give consumerism the finger while smiling all the way to the bank.