4 Ways to become Eco-Friendly

Have you ever considered that your every day tasks can have an impact on the environment?

Admittedly, I had not realised until very recently – and I hold my hands up to say I have been shocking! From getting disposable cups for my morning coffee to using a lot of make-up wipes, what made me really question this is the amount of plastics that contaminate the water, and by 2050, there will be more plastic items in the sea than fish. That’s terrifying isn’t it?

What happened to that single-use plastic cotton bud you’ve just used to clean your ears?

Justin Hofman, 2017

As a disclaimer, that’s not your exact cotton bud you’ve just used before reading this. This was taken in 2017 by Wildlife Photographer of the Year, Justin Hofman who saw this when in Indonesia. But it’s still sad to see that creatures under the sea are affected by the sheer volume of plastic waste in their environment.

Not only was 8th June ‘World Oceans Day’, but there has been a lot of emphasis on being eco-friendly to the environment. However, we need to do more. This month’s post is 4 ways to becoming eco-friendly that I’ve tried out from Pinterest, and also with a local business who I recently engaged with via Instagram.

So let’s save the planet with 4 easy steps!

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Reduce

We’re guilty of it – takeout cups, straws for fancy cocktails, packaging for food… we all use it, and we all dump them. So the next time you’re in a coffee shop about to get yourself a coffee to kickstart the day, consider using a Keep Cup instead of getting yet another paper cup that will just get dumped.

Some other ways that you can reduce waste are;

  • Buy loose fruit and vegetables – bring your own produce bags though so you’re not juggling around the store!
  • Store food or products in glass jars if you can. Not only do mason jars look cute, but they’re very practical!
  • If you can’t buy anything without packaging, see if it can be recycled. Even better, see if the store does an offer if you bring back your plastics. For example, if you bring back 5 empty pots Lush will give you a free face mask!
  • If you’re particularly thirsty – bring your own bottle of water and use a water fountain. It is now the law for any establishment that sells food or drink to provide free tap water – and write to your council about local water fountains that the public can use when they’re out and about.
  • Purchase items such as this shower head that can reduce the amount of water used but still makes sure you’re squeaky clean!
  • Buy solid bars such as shampoo or body soap – they smell good and cut down on the use of plastic.

Reuse

There are different ways you can reduce the amount of single use plastics, and invest in reusable products that will cut down the waste. There’s your coffee cup or water bottle that you can use every day, but there are some surprising ways of reusing products that, until recently, never crossed my mind:

  • Menstrual/breastfeeding pads – pads that can be washed and reused during the time of the month!
  • Cloth nappies
  • Shopping bags
  • Produce bags
  • Straws (bamboo, silicon, metal or seashells!)
  • Reusable coffee filters
  • Tea infusers
  • Beeswax sandwich wraps

Recycle

Since moving house, I found that having more space has encouraged me to recycle more. Crazy right?! But now, I’m conscious of recycling any packaging from food or products I purchase. But if you reduce and re-use, your recycling will be cut down massively!

Make sure you’re checking to make sure it is safe to recycle products. Any items such as phones and batteries should be recycled at a verified location such as your local waste tip or stores that allow you to drop off batteries. Food and garden waste can be decomposed so find out to see if your council will provide you with a food caddy bin, or whether your local waste tip can allow for this.

Rhianna…?

Ok – I couldn’t get Rhianna – BUT here’s some other ways you can help the environment;

  • Help with your local beach clean up – if you don’t live near a beach, then consider helping around the neighbourhood
  • Shop at Eco-Friendly stores – in Hull, we have The Eco Shed in Trinity Market which stock natural and environment friendly products by local and small businesses. You can either pop in to pick up your essentials and ask for tips by the lovely staff in the shop (they also offer a kit ranging from starting your journey to saving the planet, to getting your essentials for upcoming festivals) or purchase their items on Etsy. Plus they are also the official suppliers for The Happy Newspaper!
  • Cut down on driving – instead why not walk or bike to your location (if you can!). Alternatively – do a car share!
  • Up-cycle and fix old furniture rather than throwing it away – the other week, I dragged home a bookshelf I saw (which was free to a home) and managed to re-vamp it up to look nice in my spare room!

What do you do to help the environment? Share your tips in the comments below!

You can also check out my new Pinterest Board “Eco-Friendly

Until next time,

9th June 2018
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