In our current climate state, it has become more important than ever to monitor our environmental impact. Everyday practices such as grocery shopping and taking out the rubbish play a more important role in saving the environment than you think. In this post, we’ll show you different and effective ways to reduce waste in your home, from switching to bamboo sheets to repurposing old food jars.
Switch up Your Laundry Routine
There’s an undeniable large amount of waste that’s generated through the average household’s laundry practices. From toxic detergents and washing liquids that pollute the water and harm wildlife to the amount of laundry wastewater produced from each cycle, there’s a lot we need to change about our laundry routine to reduce waste.
Avoid starting a cycle on your washing machine if your load is anything less than full. All-natural options such as white vinegar and castile soap are non-harmful alternatives to store-bought detergents. Another effective way to save money, energy and the environment? Skip the dryer and try to line-dry your laundry.
Change Your Sleeping Habits
‘Sleeping habits’ in this case is less about whether you toss and turn, but rather what you’re sleeping on. The production of cotton bed linen results in the emission of toxic chemicals, as well as significant textile and water waste. A great way to reduce production waste from the comfort of your own home is to switch out your regular bed linen for a more sustainable fabric - bamboo.
From bamboo pillow cases to bamboo quilt covers, switching your entire bed linen cupboard to bamboo fabric does more for the environment than you may have previously thought. Bamboo is a fast-growing plant, making it a highly renewable resource that reduces the amount of water and energy consumption in its production process. Here at Linenly, our bamboo sheets are completely biodegradable, as well as organic and Oeko-Tex certified (meaning that they aren’t produced with any toxins or harmful chemicals), so you can rest easy knowing that your bedsheets are as good for the environment as they are for you. For more information about our bamboo bedding, visit us here.
Replace single-use products
Single-use products such as plastic water bottles, plastic bags and cotton pads produce large amounts of waste and are incredibly harmful to the environment as well as our wildlife. Try to avoid single-use products and replace them with more sustainable alternatives.
Stop buying disposable plastic water bottles and instead, buy a reusable water bottle to refill throughout the day. When you’re heading out of the house to go shopping, bring an eco-friendly tote with you to avoid using plastic bags. Additionally, those who use cotton pads can now turn to reusable cotton pads, which can be thrown into the washing machine to be used over and over again. There are many ways to replace single-use items that won’t interrupt your daily life and still benefit the environment.
Always Recycle Correctly
How many times have you been faced with the uncertainty of whether an item belongs in the recycling bin or the landfill, taking a guess and risking it being improperly disposed of? Although recycling is a step in the right direction, it’s important to recycle correctly, as a contaminated item may render a whole batch un-recyclable and therefore sent to landfill.
When you’re unsure about an item, check in with your city council, neighbourhood, or apartment reception. As a rule, avoid recycling cardboard boxes that were previously used to store food, such as pizza boxes and takeaway boxes - you can salvage the parts have no food or grease stains on them, but otherwise, they’re better off going in the landfill.
Avoid Food Waste
We’re all guilty of leaving food on our plates from time to time, but it’s important to be conscious about food waste. Did you know that food systems contribute to roughly one quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions?
If you can’t find it in you to stomach any more of your dinner, store it in a microwaveable container and heat it up to eat the next day. When you’re grocery shopping, be mindful about what you’ll need - if you know that you won’t be home for many meals this week, don’t buy as much.
Re-use What You Can
If you’ve finished your jar of jam, reconsider repurposing it instead of throwing it away. Items such as jars, boxes, cans and tins often land up in the landfill, but you can avoid producing waste by cleaning them and using them as either storage or home decor. Jars are great for storing food items, whilst cans are excellent planters.
It pays off to be creative in your quest to reduce waste. By repurposing your items, you avoid waste but also save your money whilst cutting down on consumption.
Donate old items
Not all fabric is biodegradable like our bamboo bedding, so old clothes - usually made of cotton and polyester - spend forever in the landfill when they’re thrown away. Most household and personal items that get thrown away are still in excellent condition, so if this applies to you, consider donating any old items you were thinking of discarding. The traditional method would be to donate to a charity, op-shop or even friends and family. Nowadays, though, Facebook groups and online donation services are an excellent way to donate if your local op-shop is further away from where you live. With online-based services around, you have no excuse to leave your old, unwanted items in the rubbish bin.