Surprisingly enough there are many people out there who have the misconception that they’ll have to go way out of their way to reduce their waste or spend double the money they usually spend, but that could not be farther from the truth.
We have some really simple ways to reduce your waste without breaking the bank! Some of these things can even save you money.
- Buy bamboo toothbrushes or an eco-friendly alternative. We have switched our toothbrushes to bamboo ones, and although some on them have a wood taste there is nothing bad I can’t say anything bad about them. My husband usually is very skeptical when it comes to me switching anything to an “eco-friendly” alternative but he is really happy with this one. I like how soft the brushes are and to be honest my teeth feel cleaner than ever.
- Cloth napkins, or make your own! We have made napkins out of old towels and shirts, not only does it save us money but it is really nice to wipe your face with something soft. After use just give them a wash, and if they are really dirty I recommend to just simply rinse them off before throwing them into the washer.
- E-books and E-billing. There are so many apps for books you can get for your tablet, computer, or your phone. I know it is nice to sit down with a nice book but they do take up quite a bit of room and sometimes they aren’t made with the most eco-friendly products, plus digital versions are usually less expensive than a hard copy. For e-billing, you just switch your bills to be sent to your email, and that can be done by making a simple phone call or going online. I know we used to pile up mail in bags for months until we could drop it to a free truck that comes around every so often and shreds paper for you, the company would just have events every so often. I believe the company was called Shred-It.
- Diy rags for cleaning. We’ve made these the same way we make our napkins, but just designate them for cleaning so we don’t have to use paper towels. In my opinion they clean better and then when you’re done you just throw them in the washer, if they’re really dirty I like to give them a quick rinse before.
- Diy cleaners. I cannot explain how simple this is! You don’t need to keep buying those chemicals in a plastic container that will end up in a landfill! You can make your own natural cleaner that cleans just as well, and you can put it in a nice glass container for a more eco-conscious option as well.
- Compost. All your extra food scraps can go into a compost to make your garden or greenery thrive and look amazing. Some people even sell it online to make a little extra money because the compost soil has so much nutrients. You do not have to buy an expensive compost, you can easily make your own for less than $10.
- Waste free toothpaste and deodorant. When shopping for toothpaste and deodorant look for waste free containers or containers that you will be able to reuse for something else. There are many different places to get them or you can make your own at home with simple ingredients.
- Bar soaps for hair, face and body. I’ll confess, I used to be one of those people that had way too many containers in my bathroom and my husband hated it! Since we have switched to bar soaps, I haven’t heard any complaints. I do admit that the shampoo and conditioner do take some time to get used to but now I prefer it. There are many different companies and handmade shops that make them and they have a wide variety of prices to fit every budget.
- Fix rather than replace. Most of the time when something breaks we just look for a new one, but rather than thowing it into a landfill why not try to fix it? For example, our washer kept leaking and I started looking online for a new (to us) washer because I did not want to buy a brand new one. When my husband came home we started to look together. My husband went outside
shortly after to talk to one of his neighbor friends, and he came back 15 min later with a $10 part and fixed it before I even got done changing a diaper, and it’s worked great ever since. Sometimes things can be easily fixed and not have to cost you an arm and a leg, nor does that thing have to just sit and rot in a landfill.
- No more disposable razors! Not only are disposable razors just gross and made up of nasty plastic, they are they’re are filling up the landfills when there are much better alternatives out there. My husband got razors from 2 different online razor companies that deliver monthly, and he just gave me the one he didn’t like as much. It has been the best raxor ever! I know it’s made for a man but it cuts so close and leaves my legs smoother than a baby bottom.
- Donate rather than throw out. Don’t just throw your stuff in the trash if you don’t want it, you can donate it to places to get a tax write-off, or to people that need it. We give a lot of our old toys to kids that are less fortunate, and the rest of the stuff we give to the Veterans donation place in our town, or Goodwill for a tax write-off.
- Oil, batteries, and electrical wires are not things that should be just thrown in the trash. Contact your local recycling center or landfill for proper dispose of those items, and some places like Home Depot will accept them as well.
- Say no to plastic straws! There are so many beautiful stainless steel ones (that come with a cleaning utensil!) They are affordable and they last a very long time, I keep one in my purse and the diaper bag for my older child. Plastic straws are just filling up the oceans and doing so much harm, why not invest in a straw you can use anywhere and help the environment?
One thing that really helps is to be more familiar with the garbage and recycling policies in your county. I have found that the people who find recycling hard tend to just not be informed enough about the subject.
What are some ways you reduce waste in your household?