When I was in NYC a few months back, I met a fellow vegan at one of my meetings who told me about Lauren from Trash is for Tossers. He thought I would love her blog, and he was right! She is an incredible NYC gal who lives a zero-waste life. I was so blown away by this and decided if she could live zero-waste, I could at least make the effort to reduce the amount of waste I produce.
I’ve spent the past couple of months working on finding ways I can reduce waste in my everyday life and I thought you might find it helpful as well! Keep reading to find out my 5 easy ways to reduce waste in 2018.
1. Get a Reuseable Coffee Cup & Water Jug
I’m a creature of habit and I absolutely love my daily cup of coffee. I usually make it at home (with my favorite ground coffee and creamer) but occasionally I’ll be running late or out running errands and want to get a coffee while I’m out. I had to get this bamboo cup from Lauren’s shop, Package Free Shop once I saw it. It really is zero waste as it’s completely biodegradable, but also TBH it’s also super cute as it’s all black with a matte finish.
I’ve mentioned it before but honestly, the hydro flask is a lifesaver. It keeps my water fresh and cool, and I find I drink way more water when it’s from the hydro flask. I can’t remember the last time I drank water out of a plastic bottle, and I have no desire to ever again.
2. Switch To A Bamboo Toothbrush
Apparently, every plastic toothbrush that has ever been used EVER is still on this planet. That’s because they’re plastic and will never biodegrade. Disgusting, right? Switching to a bamboo toothbrush is a SUPER way to reduce this problem. Jesse and I have been using a bamboo toothbrush for the past two months and I’m in love with it. I feel like my teeth are cleaner, it actually looks nicer, and it seems to be holding up better. I can’t recommend them enough. We purchased ours from Whole Foods, but here’s a great option.
3. Bring Your Own Bag When Shopping
Here in Southern California, we are actually charged $0.10 per paper/plastic bag at the grocery store, so that’s a great incentive to bring your own bag. Even if your state doesn’t require it, I’ve loved switching to bringing my own bags. Mine are from Trader Joe’s and are amazing as they are super large and have a zipper to hold everything in. Long gone are the days of me trying to juggle my groceries in from the car risking a ripped bag. When I’m clothes shopping I usually like to bring a tote bag big enough to throw the clothes inside.
4. Bring Your Own To-Go Containers
Jesse and I eat out a few times a week, and there are times when I may not be hungry enough to finish my whole meal. I’ve been trying to bring my own container to take the leftovers to go, rather than let them go to waste or have to take a plastic container. I love these from Package Free Shop, but any container you already have will work as well!
5. Save Boxes From Packages to Re-use
I’ve been working on this for myself this year, and it might help those of you who get a lot of packages like myself. Instead of throwing out boxes or even recycling, I’ve been saving them to reuse them. They have come in great handy for returns, and I definitely will use them someday when we move as well. It’s a great way to save money and reduce waste.
I’m still very new on this journey so I would love to know what ways you guys reduce waste below — please let me know if there’s anything not on my list!
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Photos: Gabi Wells