With Earth Day this past Sunday, I have been thinking a lot about ways that I can do my part to stop negatively impacting our planet. On my April Bucket List, I mentioned that one of my tasks this month was going to be to research some ways to reduce food waste. I decided to go beyond reduction of food waste and make other small, environmentally friendly changes as well. None of these tips are earth-shattering (excuse the pun), but they can go a long way in making our planet a little happier.
Reusable Water Bottles/Cups
Multiple studies suggest that sooo many plastic bottles are used in America and very few of them are properly recycled. To reduce the number of plastic bottles in landfills, and easy swap would be to keep reusable bottles and cups on hand. I swear by my S’well bottles and Yeti. I’ve even gifted them on several occasions! My S’well bottles are reserved only for water, but my Yeti (I have this one!) is fair game for hot or cold beverages. Both products have been great at reserving the initial temperature of the liquid for hours on end. Not only does it cut down on plastic, but keeping a water bottle around also encourages water drinking, so double points!
It would also be beneficial to do some research about different establishment policies that allow you to bring your own cup. Recently, I purchased a reusable cup from Tropical Smoothie. Since I get a smoothly weekly, I realized that it would be a great way to cut down on my styrofoam use. It also saves me $0.50 on every smoothie purchase! Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts both offer similar incentives.
We’ve all seen that video of the sea turtle getting the straw pulled out of its nose (soooooo sad). I certainly don’t want to be the reason that such a majestic creature is in pain. To combat the number of plastic straws in our oceans, I decided to purchase some reusable straws. While there are several different types on the market, I opted to go with shatter-resistant glass straws. While I suppose I could go strawless altogether, I figured that this simple swap would be a good solution for the occasions where a straw just feels necessary. I plan to keep them stashed in a few places so that they are available when I need them.
Reusable Makeup Wipes
I only wear makeup about 4 times a month, and yet I still feel like I go through quite a bit of makeup remover wipes. When Sarah (@_srs_ on insta!) mentioned that she found some reusable makeup wipes, I was all for it! The reviews are great, and I am hoping that they will even help with my sensitive skin (they claim that they can be used for makeup removal with just water!). Keep an eye out for a review in my instastories!
Plastic bags can take well over a decade to biodegrade, that is if they biodegrade at all according to this site. It’s been uplifting to see the strides that our country has taken in the last few years to reduce the use of plastic bags. However, it only works if we decide to do our part and use reusable bags more often. Similar to the bring-your-own cup incentives, some stores offer incentives for bringing a reusable bag as well. For example, you can save $0.05 per bag in Target stores!
I have been slowly converting to the reusable bag lifestyle for about a year now. My biggest issue is neglecting to return my bags to the car after bringing the groceries in (womp womp). However, I am going to make a more conscious effort to make sure that I have one available to say “no” to plastic bags more often. However, when I do get a plastic bag, I try to reuse them around the apartment as well.
I hope that this post has provided inspiration for everyone thinking about reducing their carbon footprint! I challenge you to commit to one (or more!) of these easy swaps to a reusable product.
Together, we can make the Earth a happier place ♥