10 Tips to a Greener Lifestyle

Easy ways to make a difference

Lately I’ve been reviewing my ‘greeness’ which seems to have slipped in some areas over the last few years, most likely due to arrival of two babies!  I’ve been doing a trusty search online for myself and thought I could write a quick post on it too, in case it is helpful for anyone else.

There are many things you can do to live a greener and more sustainable life.  Here are 10 easy tips to get you started:

1. Only buy what you need

Do you really need more clothes, more makeup, another car?  It’s easy to get caught up in a culture of always having the latest thing and buying more than you need.  Not only is this bad for the environment but it’s bad for your pocket as well.  Try having a capsule wardrobe or capsule makeup bag and only buying new items when the old ones are worn out, used up or broken.

2. Plastic Free Promise

Do everything you can to avoid this stuff.  It doesn’t biodegrade and is piling up all over the earth and in the oceans, killing animals and poisoning our environment.  There are now so many wonderful alternatives available when shopping for goods traditionally made with plastic.  You can get bamboo toothbrushes and drinking straws for example, use a stainless steel or glass reusable drinking bottle, and buy food that isn’t wrapped in plastic.

3. Make Do and Mend

This was a common practice until relatively recently in our history.  Do you really need to throw out that top because it’s got a tiny hole in it? Just sew it up!  Your bag breaks? Fix it.  Before you buy something new ask yourself if you already have something that will do the job.

4. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Although recycling is excellent, it is also super important to only buy what you need in the first place (as above) and use the item until it has completely worn out, and then only at the end of it all, recycle.  A good example of reusable items is a reusable cloth shopping bag, reusable wash clothes and reusable nappies (the later could save you about £600!)

5. Transport

Don’t use the car so much.  Instead take public transport, cycle or walk, even if it’s just once a week.  The later two have obvious benefits for your health as well!

6. Make greener purchases

Whenever you buy something, think, ‘can I buy something greener?’ ‘Something that’s better for my health and the health of the planet?’ ‘Something with less chemicals?’  Buying second-hand or recycled items is a great option as they use less resources than a product made from new materials.

7. Switch off

Turn off lights, heating and appliances when you don’t need them.  Use energy efficient light bulbs – they may seem expensive but they will save you ten times what they cost over their lifetime.

8. Save water

Taking showers rather than baths, only boiling as much water as you need in the kettle and not leaving the tap running whilst you brush your teeth are all excellent ways of saving water.

9. Share

Share expensive equipment, especially the kind that doesn’t get used often such as a carpet cleaner or DIY equipment, amongst family and friends.  This is also a great money saving tip.

10. Grow your own

Vegetables from shops are often packaged in plastic and have been shipped great distances, sometimes from other countries.  This uses a huge amount of resources.  Growing your own vegetables avoids all of this waste and provides you with food at a fraction of the price you would pay for it in a shop.