It's great that you want to do your part in saving the planet. Even small changes can make a big difference. Reducing waste in your home can seem overwhelming and complicated, but thankfully there are some quick and easy changes that you can make. Essentially, what it all comes down to is trying to reduce, reuse and recycle more in your home.
It might sound obvious, but recycling is a great place to start if you're trying to reduce waste in your home. Start by separating out the items that can be recycled. If you can, it's convenient to set up a system like different trash cans or boxes for each type of item. Packaging usually needs to be rinsed before it can be recycled. Some cities have curbside recycling, which is really convenient. If your city doesn't do curbside, you'll need to find a public drop-off point.
It's also worth finding out if your employer has recycling services. Some employers will allow their employees to make use of their services, which is obviously quite convenient and can help avoid an extra trip if you're going in to work anyway.
2. Mend Instead of Buying New
Learning to make minor repairs to clothing is a skill that will help you reduce waste in your home and save you money. Clothes that are torn or missing a button can often be mended quite easily. You'll get more use out of them before they need to go to a landfill site. Don't have time for mending? A dry cleaner or tailor can usually mend clothes for a small fee.
Mending isn't limited to clothing. Furniture, toys, and other household goods and appliances can also often be repaired instead of replaced. Brush up on your DIY skills or find a good handyman to help fix things instead of buying them again.
3. Buy Second Hand and Donate Used Goods
Buying what you can second-hand is a great way to reduce waste in your home. Many items like furniture can be even better second-hand and add character to your home. Clothes that have been outgrown or are no longer worn can be donated or sold to other people. Some other great items to consider donating or selling are unwanted appliances, books, and furniture.
Soft furnishings like bedding, drapes, and sofas can be tricky to buy or sell second-hand. Soft furnishings can sometimes bring bugs and pests into your home if you don't take precautions. If you're looking to buy these items make sure you know the home they're coming out of or have a plan in place to clean them thoroughly before you start using them.
4. Switch To Reusable Water Bottles
Switching to reusable water bottles is better for the environment and better for your health. Try to move away from single-use products like plastic water bottles. Try a glass or steel bottle instead. You'll find they keep your drinks cooler as well. Already got a bunch in the cupboard? Commit to using them. Make it a habit and pretty soon you won't even miss those flimsy single-use bottles.
5. Meal Planning Reduces Wastage Of Food
Cut down on food wastage by meal planning. Plan for the meals you'll eat so that you can buy the items you need. Meal planning is actually a great way to save not only the environment but also stick to your budget, free up time and reduce your mental load.
If you're new to meal planning, try to just plan for two or three days at a time. Once you've got the hang of that, you can try planning for a week or two and really start reaping the benefits.
6. Buy Less, But Higher Quality
How often do your household items need to be replaced because they are broken or showing more wear and tear than you can live with? Purchasing higher-quality items can help cut down on the amount of waste that you generate. Try to look for items that are higher quality and will last longer.
Choose products that are less likely to break and which are easier to repair if they do break. These products are usually more expensive, but in many cases, you'll actually end up saving money in the long term. Unfortunately, sometimes it's actually cheaper to just keep buying low-quality products and replacing them when they break. This lifestyle change requires a real mind shift and commitment to reducing waste.
7. Cut Down On Disposable Products
Many disposable products can be recycled, but where possible it's better to try and cut down on the amount you use. Products like paper towels, wet wipes, paper plates, paper napkins, and disposable cups can easily be replaced with the real deal. Again, it might take a little getting used to and some effort to change habits, but once you make the switch it'll feel more normal. If there are items you can't do without, make sure that you're using the most environmentally responsible version you can find.
8. Choose Plant-Based Diapers That Can Be Composted With REDYPER™
Everyone knows that diapers are terrible for the environment, but many greener alternatives are either a lot more effort or just really inferior quality. DYPER keeps it simple for parents with plant-based diapers. Their remarkably absorbent, soft diapers are made with chlorine-free fluff pulp and plant-based materials.
Diapers made with plant-based materials are effective and convenient. Their diapers are made without harmful chemicals or potential irritants such as natural rubber latex, alcohol, perfumes, PVC, lotions, TBT, or Phthalates. DYPER diapers are also independently tested and certified Standard 100 by OEKO TEX®, a leading Swiss certification body, and achieved the coveted 5-star rating by DermaTest®. They offer an incredibly convenient diaper subscription service. They'll help you figure out how many diapers you're likely to need, deliver them for free and even top you up on short notice if you run out.
They're competitively priced, with a four-week supply typically costing $89 with a subscription. Choose to use their REDYPER™ system, and they'll take your diapers, compost them, and even purchase carbon offsets for you. It's really is one of the easiest and most convenient ways to start reducing waste in your home.
Don't Be A Perfectionist
It's great to have big goals, but don't let them stop you from achieving smaller things. You might not be able to eliminate waste completely, but that doesn't mean you can't make a few changes that have a significant impact. Slowly making changes and forming habits will have a bigger impact than going all out for a few weeks or months and then giving up because it's all too much effort.
Decide what you can manage, make a few small changes, and once you've got them under control make some more. Reducing your waste in a manageable and environmentally kind way means that you'll be able to keep the changes in place without slipping back into old habits.