sustainable living 101
by: jewelz deszell
conscious living doesn’t have to be as complicated as it might seem. any new journey feels overwhelming at first, but the most important thing to keep in mind is that you don’t need to be perfect. now that we’re entering a new year, it’s the perfect opportunity to implement some healthy habits that’ll benefit you and the planet at the same time!
start where you are, try something new, and with time, conscious living will become your new normal. here are a few simple ways that you can get started on your sustainability journey in 2021!
opt-out of single-use plastic
to start off with the basics, opting out of single-use plastic is the best way to start living an eco-friendly lifestyle. it might sound easy at first, but there’s plastic all around us, even if we don’t always realize it. with plastic bags at the grocery store, water bottles at the gym, cups at the coffee shop, utensils in the takeout bag, you might be using more plastic than you think!
opting-out of plastic can be as easy as bringing your own cups, utensils, and bags wherever you go. we know that single-use plastic can be the most convenient way to travel, so, keep a stash of reusables in your car so you’ll never have to say yes to plastic ever again!
there are eco-friendly swaps for just about every kind of conventional plastic product that you can think of. for reference, if you start bringing your own reusable coffee cup to work each day, you can reduce your carbon footprint by about 176-264 lbs of co2 per year!
your diet should always be reflective of the foods that make you feel your happiest and your healthiest. to no surprise, the way that we eat has a lot to do with how high or low our individual carbon footprint is since the food industry is one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions.
reducing your intake of meat and dairy is a great way to keep the planet in mind as you eat. making simple swaps for vegetable protein might be the single best way you can impact our planet since animal agriculture produces more co2 emissions than the entire transportation industry!
choose biodegradable products
since the green movement is well on its way to becoming the new standard, it’s pretty easy to find biodegradable products! if there’s ever an option between biodegradable and nonbiodegradable, always choose the one that’s made from natural materials or ingredients that will eventually return to the earth. biodegradable products take some of the pressure off of our landfills and reduce the amount of waste that each of us produce.
support sustainable clothing brands
fashion used to be the most difficult industry to navigate when the majority of brands had enormous carbon footprints, lacked ethics, and contributed to the rise of fast fashion. now, medium-size retailers and small businesses offer sustainable and ethically made clothing that’s beneficial for you and the environment.
not only are sustainable and natural fibers better for the environment, but they’re also easier on your skin! slow fashion has a set of core values that focuses on ethical production, sustainable methods, and high-quality materials that will last.
at the end of the day, sustainable clothes are meant to last years, which is just one reason why it’s the most planet-friendly way to shop! you can reduce your waste by extending the life of your wardrobe, save money in your bank account, and feel good about your purchase.
starting your eco-friendly journey can be big, small, or somewhere in between; it’s all up to you and your circumstances. as long as you’re taking steps in the direction of a healthier planet, you’re doing your part to impact and support the green movement!