Living eco-friendly on a budget is a joyful and inspiring change. But it can get overwhelming at times. This lifestyle requires commitment, dedication to a cause, and making small, mindful substitutes in your purchases.
The truth is, going plastic-free is no easy feat, especially when 90% of the products around us contain this toxic material. But the fruits of this journey are definitely worth your effort and time.
Many people believe living eco-friendly is expensive. They couldn’t be more wrong!
You can easily make a few changes in your routine, starting from home, to live plastic-free without spending big.
But more on that later. Let’s first see why you should go eco-friendly.
Why is it important to be eco-friendly?
Plastic is a cheap and easy to craft material. So it's a no-brainer that it's present in most household items.
However, plastic is terrible not only for your body but also for the environment!
Research shows that micro-plastic toxicity leads to inflammation, cancer, stress, and even heart diseases.
Additionally, plastic takes decades to decompose. During this time, it remains under sunlight for a long time, gradually releasing toxic particles under the penetrating sun rays.
If it burns, plastic releases toxic chemicals into the environment, adding to the pollution. More than often, plastic garbage makes its way to the oceans and kills nature within.
Needless to say, the need of our time is to start living eco-friendly and ditch plastic completely from our homes.
The do’s and don'ts of living plastic-free
Going plastic-free is a long skillful journey that could take years to master. If you want to make budget-friendly changes, you’ll need to be more cautious and smart about your choices.
With every purchase, you’re playing your part in creating a sustainable environment allowing the natural flora and fauna to blossom without any problems.
You’re also creating a space for future generations that’s clean, free of toxins, and has reduced risks of diseases.
Let’s go over some do’s and don'ts of living eco-friendly on a budget:
- Start by making small changes in your life. Create SMART goals for sustainable living.
- Select reusable or recyclable products.
- Find healthier alternatives to plastic products - such as bamboo.
- Rely on DIY products rather than purchasing new ones.
- Look for online coupons and discount codes.
- Join online forums and communities to discuss your goals.
- It’s impossible to go 100% plastic-free instantly so don’t stress yourself.
- Since plastic is present in most household products, avoid throwing old items away.
- Avoid letting others’ success get to you. They started as beginners too.
- Don’t let the negative opinions of others divert you from your goal.
Tips to live eco-friendly on a budget
Eco-friendly living doesn’t have to be expensive. In fact, it’s an enjoyable and rewarding lifestyle - once you get the hang of it!
Here are some affordable ways you can start living plastic-free on a budget:
1. Use plastic-free containers for takeaway
One of the most common sources of plastic products at our home is plastic take-out containers. Loads of these plastic containers are thrown away every week as most of them are non-reusable.
So what can you do instead?
When in the mood for takeaway, request the food outlets to use your special containers instead of the plastic ones.
You can grab any portable and covered stainless steel bowl or buy eco-friendly bamboo lunchboxes for this purpose. It’s not only more convenient for the environment but also keeps your food toxin-free.
2. Use face towels instead of face wipes
Face wipes have become essential for removing makeup or wiping away your face during outdoor activities.
But did you know that they contain heavy amounts of plastic? Most of the branded face wipes are made of non-biodegradable materials such as nylon, polyester, or wool. Not to mention they’re rich in chemicals that could slowly destroy your skin.
Most people make the mistake of flushing them in toilets, from where they eventually reach the sewers. Face wipes cause 93% of the sewer blockages in the UK, according to a survey.
In short, a more environment-friendly choice is reusable and washable face towels. You won’t have to dispose of them after every use and they don’t come in plastic packaging either. You’ll save loads while living plastic-free!
3. Use plastic-free utensils
Even though plastic utensils are more affordable and versatile, a healthier option is to choose more bio-friendly kitchenware, crockery, and cutlery to avoid pollution.
For starters, you could ditch all plastic spoons and forks. Most of it gets thrown away after a few uses and is completely non-recyclable.
Instead, try Outlery for casual outdoor BBQs, picnics, and camping trips. Our cutlery is thoughtfully crafted keeping in mind your health and carbon footprint. You can easily wash and reuse them, and they barely take up any space in your bag!
Also, avoid using plastic plates and switch to paper or steel items - even for outdoor use.
4. Use reusable shopping bags
Another exciting way to live eco-friendly on a budget is to stop buying plastic shopping bags and switch to reusable ones. You can grab shopping bags made of cotton fibre, paper, or nylon at a low price and start living plastic-free right away.
Besides being good for the environment, reusable shopping bags will save you loads of money. You won’t need to buy new ones during every shopping trip.
Plus, if you spill something on them, it's easy to wash off. They won’t reach the oceans and mess up sea life.
Moreover, biodegradable shopping bags can be thrown away and would compost within a few days or weeks. They’re also quite strong and can carry twice the load compared to plastic bags.
5. Use bar soaps for washing
Last but not the least, a great way to start living eco-friendly on a budget is by using bar soaps instead of liquid soap.
The latter comes in a plastic bottle which keeps adding to environmental toxicity through an impactful carbon footprint. Additionally, research shows that liquid soaps take five times more energy for production compared to bar soap.
On the other hand, various companies create bar soaps in biodegradable packaging and are comparatively cheaper. Organic bars are even healthier and a perfect choice for a sustainable lifestyle.
We hope this article gives you a clear idea of how a plastic-free lifestyle can be easy and effortless.
Eco-friendly living on a budget doesn’t have to be a hassle. Take it slow, give yourself time to adjust, and keep going with the flow. Don’t overexert yourself. Play smart to make healthier and informed decisions.