“Every time you spend money, you’re casting a vote for the kind of world you want.” – Anna Lappé , advocate for a sustainable and fair food system.
This quote reminds us that one of the most powerful tools we have as consumers is our purchasing power.
Research by Ethical Consumer indicates that we’ve already started to realise this power. Between 2016 and 2017 the not-for-profit organisation reported a 10.8% rise in ethical cosmetics sales and similar rise of 10.1% in sales of household items that were bought for re-use.
Yet thought-provoking stats and predictions, such as the estimate that by 2050 there will be more plastic in the sea than fish, remind us that we still have a long way to go, on an individual and societal level.
35 Sustainable Swaps to Lessen Your Environmental Impact
- Beeswax wraps instead of cling film
- Paper, bamboo or metal straws
- Reusable shopping bags
- Reusable travels mugs
- Fabric napkins instead of disposable napkins
- Reusable water bottle
- Plastic-free tea bags or opt for loose leaf tea
- Packaging or plastic-free bars of soap
- Silicone baking mats instead of baking paper or foil
- Buying fruit and vegetables without packaging
- Paper tape instead of sticky tape
- Reusable make-up remover pads
- Bulk buy dry goods at zero waste shops
- Reusable dryer balls
- Recycled toilet roll
- Natural toothpaste
- Coconut husk scourers for washing up
- Biodegradable dog waste bags
- Metal safety razor
- LED bulbs
- Buy in-season from local markets
- Use recyclable wrapping paper or newspaper
- Go paperless for utility and other bills
- Biodegradable earbuds
- Plastic-free dental floss
- Reusable nail varnish remover pads
- Organic cotton bedding and towels
- Fair trade clothing or buy at vintage and charity shops
- Plastic-free shampoo and conditioner bars
- Rechargeable batteries
- Reusable cupcake cases
- Bamboo toothbrushes
- Stainless steel wire pegs instead of plastic
- Glass food containers
- Upcycled furniture
These are just some of the sustainable swaps you can make to reduce waste and lessen your environmental impact. Many of these swaps are very easy to implement and the reusable nature of some products may also save you money in the long run!
Find more inspiration for sustainable living.