With so much happening to the environment, it’s important to make a positive impact on the Earth in every way we can, including shopping.
When it comes to shopping, there are lots of ways to be eco-friendly and cut down on your carbon footprint. Just because we’re all consumers doesn’t mean we can’t shop in a green, sustainable, and environmentally responsible way.
If you are wondering how you can shop more environmentally friendly, follow our 15 tips and suggestions below for a sustainable shopping strategy. You’ll be feeling much better about your impact on the planet and our green future.
15 Ways to Shop Sustainably
Here’s a quick rundown of our list of ways to be a green shopper. Find out more details about each sustainable solution by clicking on each one.
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Whenever you possibly can, buy products from local stores and sellers. You’re buying things that weren’t shipped in from the other side of the world when you shop local.
Companies release a lot of potentially toxic pollution into the air and waste a lot of natural resources through shipping products. If you buy products that were made or harvested locally, you cut out this problem altogether.
Another way to shop green is to buy produce while it is in season. If you’re buying foods that are out of season and grown in remote parts of the world, you are inadvertently encouraging products to be shipped over long distances.
For instance, instead of buying strawberries in the fall, buy produce that’s in-season (like apples) and wait until strawberries are in season again to buy them.
When it comes to buying stuff, try to buy used items instead of brand new. There are lots of products that you can buy or trade through sites like Freecycle or ThredUp that you might mistake as new.
When you buy used, not only are you saving money, but you’re cutting down on waste and energy consumption too.
Use Reusable Bags
You can usually bring reusable shopping bags when you go grocery shopping and to many other stores. Many stores offer reusable bags that you can take with you to use over and over again. You won’t have to waste paper or plastic bags this way.
Use Recycled Packaging
Lots of items are sold in packaging made from recycled materials. Try to buy products that are in recycled packaging whenever you can. Otherwise, you’re basically encouraging manufacturers to use wasteful packaging procedures.
Use Cloth Diapers
If you’re a parent, think about buying cloth diapers instead of disposable diapers for your children. Not only are disposable diapers pretty expensive but it also takes them a long time to biodegrade in a landfill.
You can save money and protect the environment by using reusable cloth diapers instead.
Try to reuse big, sturdy containers for storage purposes when you do have to buy products that come packaged in them. It reduces the impact of the extra packaging materials when you can reuse the containers.
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Avoid Pre-Washed Produce
Many types of fresh produce like salad mix or berries come pre-washed for convenience. Although this can be pretty convenient, it also costs extra and can be harmful to the environment. Instead, buy regular produce and wash it at home.
Avoid Impulse Items
Most stores will put extra items at the front of the store, next to the registers, and at the ends of aisles in an effort to make an extra sale. Avoid these impulse buys whenever you go shopping. Most things you buy that you don’t need eventually end up in a landfill.
You can make a positive impact on the environment and save fuel by cutting back on the number of times you go to the store or go out shopping.
Bonus points for walking or biking there whenever you can!
Recycling isn’t just all about separating your paper, metal, glass, and plastic into their separate little bins.
Just a few other ways you can practice the “3 R’s” are with a washable travel mug for your coffee or tea, a reusable glass water bottle, cloth napkins and towels instead of paper ones, solar-powered electronics, and rechargeable batteries.
Clean with Natural Products
It used to be impossible to find detergents that were natural but also strong enough to take out tough stains. These days, it really is possible for a natural cleaner to be able to go toe-to-toe with strong industrial chemicals.
Look for cleaning products from brands such as Mrs. Meyer’s and Seventh Generation that effectively remove stains, while being EPA Safer Choice Certified and free of bleach, dyes, and VOCs.
Not only will your cleaners be better for the environment, but they’ll be safer for everyone in your home than that other stuff you used to buy.
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Go All Organic
You can live healthier by eating organic foods and using organic toiletries, but you can go one step further by buying organic textiles from sustainable clothing brands.
Check the tag on bedding, blankets, clothes, etc. and look for items made from cotton that’s been organically grown. This can also include materials like fleece, terrycloth, sherpa, and velour.
Personally, I find that products made with organic cotton tend to be much softer and of better quality than their non-organic counterparts.
Hey, ethical shopping is fun!
Buy In Bulk
It may surprise you to learn that wholesale stores such as Costco and Sam’s Club can actually help protect the environment.
Buying things in bulk that you use on a daily basis like toilet paper, hair care products, laundry detergent, and pantry staples eliminates a lot of excessive packaging.
You might not think you need that much ketchup, but you’ll be saving money and cutting down on waste when you buy in bulk.
Shop for the Bunny
Whenever you go shopping from now on, check the labels for the Leaping Bunny Logo the same way you would check nutrition labels and expiration dates.
The Leaping Bunny can be found on many household products, cosmetics, and other items around the world. It’s an internationally recognized symbol that guarantees no animal testing was done during the product’s development.
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How to Reduce Waste & Pollution
When it comes to disposing of all the junk in your home or office you need to get rid of, you can still be green about throwing it out.
When you book a junk removal pickup with LoadUp to clear out your old, unwanted furniture, bedding, appliances, exercise equipment, outdoor recreation gear, electronics, and just about anything else that loses its usefulness eventually, your old junk is taken to be disposed of responsibly.
Instead of dumping your junk in a landfill to add to the environmental chaos we know too well these days, LoadUp takes items that can be salvaged to your local transfer station to be recycled.
Items that are still in good, working condition are donated to local charities in your community as often as possible.
To learn more about the junk removal services LoadUp provides and what we’re doing to help the environment and the people in it, visit us online here or give us a call today!