Living sustainably can seem like a hard task when you're just starting out but trust us when we say it doesn't have to be. Regardless if you've decided to go green to help out our old friend Mother Nature, to save money or just to see how easy/hard it is, with every lifestyle change you make, the Earth gets a little healthier.
From reusable drink bottles to buying in bulk, to help you on your eco-friendly journey, we've put together 8 ways you can embrace your new environmentally friendly life.
Step 1 - Buy Your Food In Bulk
....and store them in jars and canisters to be displayed on your kitchen bench! This life-hack ensures your household will have zero waste when it comes to the food department. This step works well if you eat a lot of pasta, rice, beans, lentils, dry fruit or nuts.
Pop on down to your local bulk food store, take some reusable and washable bags with you and fill them up with your favourite ingredients/foods, which you'll then weigh and pay accordingly.
Once you get back home, try putting them in jars from leading brands such as Typhoon Living and Maxwell & Williams. With colours and designs that are bound to suit any kitchen's decor, these kitchenware items will make sure your food stays good until you're ready to eat it.
Step 2 - Use Less Gass or Electricity With A Pressure Cooker
This step is really simple considering everyone should want to save some time in the kitchen! Introducing your cooking lifesaver, the pressure cooker!
Perfect for cooking foods such as beans, lentils, potatoes or chickpeas (or full meals in general) in absolutely no time at all, this bad boy will have you reducing your electricity or gas bills, putting more money in your pocket and less toxic emissions into the atmosphere.
Another benefit to the pressure cooker is that vitamins and nutrients are preserved in your food when cooking, meaning you receive more of the health benefits with every mouthful you eat.
Let's have a round of applause for the pressure cooker, please.
Step 3 - Forget About Plastic Straws
Single-use plastic produces a lot of waste and are not commonly recycled. If they're not correctly disposed of, they can easily end up in the ocean or in nature, eaten by animals (this is a big no-no).
We should mention that you don't actually have to sip your favourite beverage through anything at all but if you feel like you must then the ONLY sustainable option is to ditch the plastic straws and opt for a stainless steel or bamboo version.
Not only are they safe and easy to use but they also add a certain elegant element to your drinking experience. Oh and also they mean less waste in landfills and less overall economic cost.
Step 4 - Reusable Bottles Are In
Disposable plastic is out and reusable stainless steel is in! Buying and using a reusable drink bottle is one of the easiest ways that you can be helping the environment.
Not only will you save some money but you'll also be doing your health a favour as plastic bottles have the potential to pollute the water you're drinking with nasty chemicals. Thankfully brands like Avanti and Maxwell & Williams are dedicated to providing you with plastic-free, BPA free, environmentally-friendly options you're sure to love.
Step 5 - Reduce Your Reliance On Plastic Wrap
When it comes to making lunches and packing snacks you're forgiven for just wanting to get it over with as quickly as possible (if the process takes too long you're in danger of eating your lunch before you even leave the house).
But brands such as Russbe are making your life easier and more eco-friendly with their reusable alternative to plastic wrap.
Now you can keep yours or your children's lunch mess-free with these cute sandwich/snack bags that completely lack BPA and are dishwasher safe. Coming with a silicone seal to lock all the goodness in and to keep your food from going stale, these bags are perfect for when you have to eat lunch on-the-go.
Step 6 - Use Cleaning Sponges Instead Of Paper Towel
Unfortunately, cleaning is one of those pesky tasks that need to be done pretty much daily (ugh) but there are some products that can make it easier and more environmentally friendly.
For instance, using a cleaning cloth or sponge instead of mopping up that spilt orange juice with paper towels. Just like opting for a reusable bottle instead of buying a single-use plastic one, if you were to replace paper towels with a reusable cloth then the harm impacted on the environment goes down.
White Magic's Eco Cloth is a good one for all your general purpose cleaning tasks around the house. All you need to do is add water (say goodbye to those nasty cleaning chemicals) and off you go, making it just as healthy for you as it is for the environment!
Step 7 - Bring Your Own Coffee Cup
If you haven't spent the last couple of months walking around with your eyes closed then you'll have noticed there are heaps of people these days carrying their own coffee cups instead of opting for single-use ones.
Did you know it's very hard to recycle disposable coffee cups due to the mixture of paper and plastic in their inner lining which is designed to make them leakproof? Well, now you do.
Step 8 - Take Your Own Reusable Bags When Grocery Shopping
Roughly 1 trillion plastic bags are used each year worldwide and take hundreds of years to decompose meaning we'll be drowning in plastic sooner than our politicians care to admit. BUT, there's a way to help stop this.....
...by using reusable bags when grocery shopping! By opting for a more sustainable option, you're reducing the amount of waste that goes into landfill and are helping the planet one food shop at a time.
Try using Ladelle's range of recycled PET shopping bags. Created using plastic water bottles, these bags can hold up to 20kg and fold away when you're not using (adds to cart).