If you’ve been thinking about ways to go green but are in need of some ideas, I’m here to help. Going green doesn’t have to mean you have to do a complete overhaul of your life all at once. There are so many simple ways to go green that are quick, easy and inexpensive! Don’t let cost or the lack of time prevent you from making some minor changes that will make a major difference in the long run.
1. Save Water
One of the simplest ways to go green any day of the week is to use less water. I think I use the most water during my beauty and hygiene routines, so I’ve been making an effort to be conscious of the amount of water I use when I wash my face, brush my teeth and take a shower. Every minute we leave the water running while we wait for the water to warm up or get ready to wash our face, we’re letting gallons of water run down the drain!
2. Recycle Packaging
Give your beauty routine an eco-friendly makeover by recycling the packaging or cutting back on purchasing products that have a lot of packaging. Some cosmetics companies have recycling programs where you can get a discount or free product for returning empty packaging, like LUSH, M.A.C., Kiehl’s and Origins. You can also reuse bottles and containers or recycle plastic or paper packaging. Check this page for codes on recycling plastic bottles: thedailygreen.com.
3. Multi-task and Reuse
Another easy way to go green is to choose beauty and household products that have multiple purposes or are reusable rather than disposable. For instance, you can buy reusable razors with shaving gel on the razor, buy rechargeable batteries, use eco-friendly makeup brushes instead of disposable sponges, reuse plastic grocery bags for pet waste or to line small trash cans and reuse pickle jars to store other items.
A fun and inexpensive way to go green is to start making things yourself. This is a great way to spend some time with your family or friends and you’ll save money while you’re at it. Some great ideas are making your own reusable grocery bag, household cleaners, make your own beauty treatments, plant an herb garden or make your own hair care products.
5. Turn off the Lights
It’s really as easy as it sounds-turn off the lights! Try to get in the habit of turning off the lights, TV, radio or other devices whenever you leave a room. If you don’t already use energy-saving compact fluorescent bulbs, give them a try! You’ll save money on your energy bill and your house will be more eco-friendly. Another great idea is to unplug cell phone chargers and other electrical items when they aren’t in use, and to turn off computers at the end of the day instead of just letting them “sleep.”
6. Rethink Laundry
Did you ever think your laundry routine could make an impact on the environment, because it sure can! Washing your clothes in cold or warm water instead of hot, only doing full loads of laundry and hang-drying your clothes on occasion all help save energy. You can even take it a step further by making your own laundry detergent, wrinkle remover and dryer sheets.
7. Get Online
Taking advantage of online services will not only save you time and money, but also your sanity! Pay your bills online and enroll in paperless billing to avoid a mound of paper bills at the end of the month and save money on stamps. Read books, newspapers and magazines online, take notes and use a calendar on your phone and download music and software instead of using a CD.
8. Donate or Swap
If you have items that you no longer use or want, consider donating them or hosting a swap party. Donating items to a local charity can help provide people with employment and learning new skills, assist individuals in need, support homeless animals and more. Hosting a swap party gives you an opportunity to get together with your friends and get some new-to-you stuff in return!
9. Get Active
Since the weather is getting colder, it might not be the most optimal time to get active outdoors, but it’s a great way to go green and save money! Instead of taking the car everywhere or joining a gym, try walking, running or biking outdoors when weather permits. You can also ride your bike or walk to run errands close to home.
10. Get Glass
If you frequently buy plastic water bottles to get your H2O fix, consider switching to a reusable glass bottle. Glass bottles are a little heavier to carry around, but you don’t have to worry about any harmful chemicals leaching into your water and you’ll save money. Love your daily lattes? Why not purchase a reusable travel mug so you can fill up without all the trash? Some coffee houses even offer a small discount for bringing your own mug!
11. Support Local Farmers
Lastly, a fantastic way to go green in the kitchen is to support your local farmers by shopping at your local farmers market. I grew up in an area where agriculture was huge so farmers markets were super cheap. But I’ve also been to some markets where farms were pretty much non-existent and the prices were sky high! With that in mind, be flexible when you go to the market and look for seasonal items or consider buying in bulk and sharing the cost and items with friends or family to save.
Many of these ways to go green are quick, easy and can become a part of your daily routine in no time. The good thing about going green is that it benefits the Earth, its people and your wallet, so you can really see the difference you’re making. What are some of the ways you go green?