A Journey to Become More Sustainable

There are so many issues our planet is facing today and it can get overwhelming trying to think about the answers to all these problems. However, I think the best place to start is internally, so I started doing some research to try and become more sustainable and low-waste to help shrink my ecological footprint.

a glimpse inside a thrift store Photo by Prudence Earl from Unsplash Second hand

Point blank, more production = more waste. Even if you’re buying from a sustainable company, waste is made in packaging, handling, and shipping that can all be avoidable by shopping second hand for clothes and furniture. I know we’ve all seen a specific item that we want as is, but through my research, I’ve come to realize that taking a stab at second hand shopping before buying new never hurts and will save the bank too. Places like the Good Will and Facebook marketplace are great hubs for used furniture, unique clothes, and are great for basics.

Trader Joe'S Reusable Bag Jocelyn Hsu / Spoon

Simple Reusable Products

My family and I are always guilty of buying reusable bags at checkout, bringing them home and never seeing them again. I know the idea of reusable grocery bags is not new, but I think other kinds of reusable bags are often overlooked.

Firstly, hand-in-hand with grocery bags is reusable produce bags. The ones at the stores tend to be a sustainable plastic, but no plastic is always better! Reusable tupperware is great as an alternative to lunch bags and beeswax paper (which you can make yourself) can replace plastic wrap. Dryer balls are a perfect swap for dryer sheets as well, and never forget your thermos for morning coffee! There are a lot of items like these on Amazon.

Her Campus Media Design

Once a month Amazon

Amazon Prime is one of the most popular shopping outlets of our time; however, the extra packaging and fast shipping can be really harsh on our planet. I know Amazon is taking steps to be more environmentally friendly, but I think there’s ways we can help too.

I’ve decided, from now on, whenever I need something, or am running low of something like pens, chapstick, whatever it may be, I’ll add it to a list and wait until the end of the month to reassess. If I still need whatever is on that list I will order from Amazon, so only one trip is made to my house, cutting down emissions and saving packaging.

 

Low-waste can be challenging and sometimes creating waste is unavoidable. I’ve written the phrase “how can you be more sustainable?” on my desk, so I always remember to think first about what is best for the environment instead of thinking about what’s most efficient, and I encourage you to do the same.