I have talked about my wish to reduce my carbon footprint on this world before, and showing the no-sew tote method I use to recycle old clothing, and I’m always looking for new and better ways to live. Here are a few things I have picked up and learned over the years of trying to live better.
- Always wait until the dishwasher is full before running a cycle. You use less water on running a full machine than you would have done if you washed it all by hand in the sink. I thought it would have been the other way around but dishwashers have been made to be very efficient nowadays.
- Use colder temperatures when washing your clothes. This tip can save a lot of energy, and I have not noticed any difference in the cleanliness of my clothes either. The same tip goes for this too, always wait until you have a full machine to avoid having to do two or more unnecessary loads in a few days.
- Always consider buying secondhand first. Sometimes secondhand items can appear as brand new, and you do good by reusing it instead of buying something new. Upcycling is also something that people tend to do nowadays, purchasing used furniture and making it into something new.
- Try to repair something instead of tossing it out. Sometimes things can be easily fixed, and in those cases it would be wasteful to throw the item out and buy a new one. If your furniture has gotten a scratch, try to fix it! If something snaps in half, glue or nail it back together and cover the blemish up.
- Always turn things off completely. Leaving things in standby mode or sleep mode can waste unnecessary energy, and it can make batteries deteriorate faster. I learned to always turn my laptop off instead of just closing it and let it sleep and it extended its life span by many years.
- Grow your own herbs. Sometimes growing a herb can be fun and less expensive than having to purchase it from the store. If you need a dried version of a herb, dry it yourself! I try to keep my counter stocked with different herbs at all times. The same goes for veggies! There is a lot you could grow yourself that would require minimal effort, try to for example keep a tomato plant on your balcony or porch.
- Steer clear of store bought cleaning supplies. A lot of the time, all you need to clean something is hot water and some soap. The hundreds of different sprays and cleaners are unnecessary, and most don’t even differ from each other even if the bottles and sprays claim that they do all sorts of things. I usually use warm water and vinegar to clean and I haven’t had any issues with it at all. There are also a whole lot of detergent/cleaning DIY projects that you could try out.
- Try to avoid plastic bags. If possible, use cloth based alternatives. For the general, you could use a cloth bag to carry it out to the bin, then wash the bag if neeedd before reusing it. For paper waste you could do the same, just use it to carry it out to the recycling bin, washing it is rarely needed since paper doesn’t really emit any odors or have any kind of possible moisture. It is not recommended for food waste though, then you should use biodegradable bags. These are often given out by the garbage workers.
- Try to make your own skin care/make up. There are a lot of things you can make yourself, like for example body scrubs, lip scrubs, lip balms, deep conditioners for your hair and so on. Doing it yourself could save you a lot of money.
So these are a few of the things I can remember from the top of my head! Do you have anything you do to reduce your carbon footprint? Feel free to share in the comments below.