Easy Ways To Reduce Your Waste

Everyone can do something to prevent this planet from dying. Even if that one (or maybe a few) thing is something you feel like wouldn't do much of a difference, it can make a huge impact. You using a plastic toothbrush, maybe three to four toothbrushes a year, is not that big of a deal, right? Well, there are millions of people also using plastic toothbrushes ending up in our ocean and on beaches unable for nature to break down.

The first step to minimizing waste is to care. Care about the way we are destroying the planet and the desire to make a difference to turn it around. Pay attention to your waste. What are you throwing out? Do you throw things out that could be donated to a thrift store? Are there things that can be recycled? Is it possible to find these products with less waste? For example, instead of buying food items like tomato sauce in a metal container, find one stored in glass which can be used again to store other foods or maybe to drink smoothies from? Paying attention to your waste goes hand in hand with paying attention to your spending habits. Stop buying things that are unnecessary to produce less waste. 

Some people would say that starting to reduce waste, finding and using alternatives takes a lot of effort. I don’t know if that is true because I find it quite easy. Alternatives and ways to use less waste is really just changing a habit or making a new one. Everything new that you aren’t used to isn’t always easy at first, you just have to keep trying. 

Research about how you can minimize waste and learn as you go. There will most definitely always be more you can do but don’t be too hard on yourself. It is a process and you shouldn’t burn out because it is too hard or difficult. It might be called 'zero waste' but it is just minimizing waste as much as you can, not about having no waste at all. Do the best you can in the moment you are currently in.

Here I have some of the changes I have made in my life when wanting to reduce my waste. 

Let's get into some alternatives:  
Instead of plastic bags use tote bags. If you want to make your own, find fabric at the thrift store - there are tons of it for very little money. I actually have a tutorial on how to make reusable gift bags which are basically tote bags - check it out here. You can just make them with the measurements you want to use. 

Instead of using plastic straws use straws made from reusable materials like bamboo, stainless steel or glass. The straw I have here is from 'Not Just Bamboo' and you can find it right here: the Not Just Bamboo straw. - These are easy to take with you on the go and the cleaning stick is amazing to make sure the inside of the straw is clean. 

Instead of plastic toothbrushes buy them made in bamboo making them biodegradable. The toothbrushes I have here are also from 'Not Just Bamboo' and you can find them right here: the Not Just Bamboo toothbrushes. You can also find a tooth brush holder right here.

If you want to know how you can make your own toothpaste (+before/after pictures) then click right here: DIY Natural Toothpaste. Here I have another toothbrush, but I prefer the one from Not Just Bamboo because they have a smaller head. 

Instead of buying plastic bottles use reusable water bottles – we just recycle glass containers/bottles from foods/drinks and bring them with us on the go. You could also get a bamboo water bottle if you do not want glass. You can find one at the Not Just Bamboo webshop by clicking right here.

If you want to know how I like to spice up my water, which is something I always do when I am on the go to keep it fresh then click right here: 5 ways to spice up your water.

Instead of cotton pads or paper towels use cloths/rags. There is so much waste when using paper towels and cotton pads when a cloth does the job just as good and can be thrown in the washing machine being as good as new. 

Instead of using laundry detergent use soap nuts. They can be used a few times and are biodegradable which is a huge plus. You can find soap nuts right here or with a quick 'soap nuts' search. They can be used for any fabrics and at all temperatures between 30C - 90C. All you do is put 3-4 nuts in a (muslin) bag, crush them with the palms of your hand against a flat surface and put them in the washing machine with your clothes. 

Instead of pads/tampons use reusable pads, thinx underwear or a menstrual cup. This means less money in the long run and way less waste. I have a post on natural period products coming soon so stay tuned for that.  

More tips to reduce waste:
- Reuse glass containers to store food or other things, I put my homemade toothpaste, deodorant and dry shampoo in small glass containers that used to be food containers. 
- Compost if possible and as much as possible. Recycle as much as you can. 
- Save food leftovers instead of throwing them out. Lunch for the next day? Hell yeah!
- Thrift as much as possible. Learn more about my thrifting tips right here: My thrifting tips
- Grow your own food – we grow our own herbs and berries in our garden. 
- Turn off the water in the shower when you apply shampoo/body wash. 
- Help nature and pick up trash lying around and properly dispose it. 
- Go vegan. Animal agriculture is one of the most damaging things to the environment. 

Do you know more ways to reduce waste ?