Products for a Greener Life
We’re entering a new decade shortly, one that I think will focus on sustainability and getting the earth back to its former glory. I’ve always been one to care about the world I live in, doing my best to recycle, not eating animals, etc, but ever since moving to the very progressive California I’ve taken more steps to a sustainable lifestyle. Sometimes the changes I’ve made inconvenience me (or my husband) a little more than their non-sustainable counterparts, but to me it’s worth it. As we as a worldwide community make moves toward the future I wanted to share the ways I’ve already been trying to live more “green” in the hopes that you’ll join me as an early adopter of this lifestyle.
The biggest way to help the world is to stop using single use plastics. I KNOW. It’s really hard; you truly don’t know how much waste you’re creating until you really start to think about it - shopping bags from Target every time you buy too much, the snack bar you open up everyday from your Costco pack, the water bottle you grab from the fridge to take with you to go, and even the trash bag liners you use in every trash bin. For us, we’ve started carrying foldable cloth tote bags (and keep maybe 10 in the car for bigger shopping trips); we snack on fresh fruit or make our own snack bars (Aimee Song has an amazing recipe here); we’ve invested in numerous Swell bottles and a solid water purifier, as well as some that we take with us when we travel and don’t know if the tap water will be healthy to drink; we don’t use trash bin liners on our smaller bins or recycling, and use a plant based RePurpose trash bag in our main bin - it’s surprisingly stronger than you’d think for being biodegradable! We even use biodegradable dog poo bags. We take our lunch to work in glass Pyrex or wrapped in BeesWrap. And, of course, like all Californians, we’ve nixed plastic straws for paper, metal, or biodegradable plastic.
Those were some first few steps, the initial things you think about, but then came the ones I found myself thinking about further…when we needed a new hairbrush all I could think about was the tiny bead like particles on the end of our Conair brush and immediately found myself looking for alternatives. Boar’s hair seemed like a popular sustainable option, especially when it’s commonly placed with a bamboo handle. I then did some research to find one that stated it was “humanely sourced”; it took extra time out of my day to not just go to Target and get the same style brush I’ve used my whole life, but in the end I’m thrilled that there’s one less hairbrush out there losing its beady bristles into the ocean. In the realm of beauty, when I ran out of my favorite face wipes I made the conscious choice to seek out a biodegradable, organic new face wipes (and found heaven in these Josie Marin ones that also support polar bears!). We’ve been becoming increasingly conscious of the beauty products we’re using and the containers they come in as well, and I’m excited to see that companies are striving to have biodegradable beauty canisters by 2025.
Now, you all know I LOVE fashion, but fast fashion is one of the top five worst things for the environment; the cheap polyester, the foreign workers working for mere pennies, the hazardous working conditions, et cetera all for a cheap on-trend item that you will wear maybe once. That being said, y’all know I am a BIG proponent of renting clothes, but I also love thrifting and shopping second hand! Shops like Crossroads Trading, Buffalo Exchange, Second Time Around, are all great for finding some great stylist pieces without purchasing new. Additionally, you could shop sustainable brands like Everlane and Reformation. Want to shop sustainably but don’t know where to start? Not to fret, there’s a subscription box for that: Brea Box.
Next up, to talk about something almost taboo, women’s periods. DID YOU KNOW that menstrual products are one FIFTh of the ocean’s biggest pollutants? After recently learning this and thinking about the amount of tampons I’ve used in my life (somewhere around ) I immediately ordered a Lena menstrual cup from Amazon. Once you get over the initial concept of it, it’s a magical product that helps the environment and you. Concerned about costs? Most women spend $400+ a year on feminine hygiene products. A Lena Menstrual cup costs $30.
Lastly, while not the biggest issue to carbon footprints it is the one most discussed; gas emissions. With hybrid cars becoming more and more popular (yay!) the eyes have turned to the sky. Airplane travel is absolutely brutal for the environment, yet its hardly discussed. Thankfully, United Airlines offers your the option to offset your carbon footprint by planting more trees for each flight you take, something Z and I love to support. More airlines are now following suit, and I urge you to do the same, even by planting a tree on your own.
There you have it, the items I’ve been swapping out and upgrading in my life to be more eco-friendly and green!