One of my big intentions for 2019 was to live a more sustainable lifestyle. Over the past few months I’ve been researching and gathering new items to help me become more sustainable in my daily life. I wanted to share some new items that I recommend and some other products I have yet to try but am looking forward to trying in the near future!

Two items I use everyday, that I think everyone should have by now, are  reusable water bottles and coffee cups. There’s no reason to buy single use plastic water bottles anymore when it is so much more cost efficient and environmentally friendly to fill a reusable cup. Many coffee shops now offer a discount if you bring in your own cup, so there is no valid excuse to not have one. I am a big fan of my Hydroflask for water and my Yeti for coffee because they have great temperature control, but it isn’t absolutely necessary to go for the name brands! Anything that isn’t a single-use plastic water bottle is great!

Another go-to of mine are canvas bags and reusable produce bags. These are another item that I believe everyone should have already. These make shopping much more eco-friendly and are given out for free very often. I actually have five canvas bags that I’ve gotten for free. Plastic bags add an unnecessary amount of plastic in the environment and reusable bags are an easy way to cut plastic out of your life. Build up a collection of them and keep them in your car so they are always ready to be used!

When it comes to cooking and meal prepping, using tupperware and beeswax wrap are both great to keep your meals sustainable. Beeswax wrap is the green alternative to plastic wrap, it’s reusable and it keeps food fresh! Another item I am looking forward to adding to my collection are Stasher Bags, a reusable alternative to single use plastic zip bags. I’ve heard so many amazing things about them and I can’t wait to get them!

As far as beauty and skin care items, I’ve focused on a few big switches. In the past two years, I’ve switched to using bamboo toothbrushes in place of plastic ones and started using reusable cotton pads. I haven’t bought a plastic toothbrush in over a year and its easily one of my favorite changes I’ve made. As far as the cotton pads, they’re definitely not as easy as regular cotton pads because they need to be washed frequently, but it’s worth it. Another switch I’ve been working on is making your own skincare products or buying from a small business! I am currently working on switching all of my skin care products to homemade items from a friend who makes them all herself. Cydney [one of our contributors!!] owns a homemade skincare business [@sugareescrubs on insta!] and it’s all based on using all natural and sustainable products!!

In addition to all of these items, I’m also going green in many other aspects of my life! I’ve ditched dryer sheets for wool balls, given up the Keurig for a french press and I am planning to start composting my food scraps!

There are many more ways to be sustainable than replacing your Starbucks straw with a mental one [but still, any small change can make a difference!]. My switch to becoming more sustainable has been a slow process, but I constantly remind myself that any change is a step in the right direction to living a greener life. One thing I really appreciated about this switch is how budget friendly it has been. I’ve been able to comfortably purchase all these products without breaking the bank. As I enter my junior year of college and start grocery shopping and cooking for myself more, I will be working on new ways to stay sustainable such as trying bulk shopping!

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