Eco-friendly living tips aren’t just for hippies anymore. The green lifestyle is being integrated into many modern homes and businesses on a regular basis, from the construction process to remodels to small changes in everyday habits, and what started as the ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ motto has grown into a vast social movement. The following seven eco-friendly living tips can help you to take your love of the environment to the next level while lowering your bills and improving your health and quality of life.
1. Switch to green bath soap
Harsh chemicals, sulfates, and parabens aren’t good for the water supply or for your skin, and the same qualities that make eco-friendly bath soaps better for the planet make them better for your body too. Green bars and gels use natural ingredients that are environmentally friendly and feel better on your body, so switch to a green soap and enjoy your daily shower while knowing you aren’t contaminating the water.
2. Treat yourself to a new shower head
Older showerheads release up to three gallons of water per minute (GPM) even though they deliver poor water pressure. Revitalize your shower experience and update your old fixture by purchasing a new showerhead with a low GPM rating. It will save you money on your water bill, reduce water waste, and improve your bathing.
3. Try an all-purpose cleaner
One bottle of eco-friendly all-purpose cleaner can replace a plethora of task-specific cleaners in the cupboard. These powerful solutions simplify the process of cleaning by working for all your tasks, including cleaning the floors, sinks and toilets, and for dusting. This change reduces your household’s packaging waste immensely while limiting your exposure to airborne chemicals from regular household cleaners.
4. Start composting
Composting is one of the more popular eco-friendly living tips, but you don’t need to have a green thumb or a desire to garden in order to compost. Many cities have started offering composting programs that allow you to put your kitchen scraps to good use. The rich dirt created by the composting process is much better for the environment than sending your onion peels off to the dump, even if you don’t want to compost for your own flower beds.
5. Learn to love microfiber
Switching to washable cloths is also high on the list of eco-friendly living tips. Paper towels don’t always do a good job of drying things efficiently, and the enormous waste output that they produce has no place in a green home. Reusable microfiber towels are far more absorbent, and they never crumble into dust in your hands. If you’re concerned about using a washable cloth for the dirtier jobs in your home, try color-coding them to keep the bathroom towels separate from those used in the kitchen.
6. Stop the junk mail
Junk mail is an everyday annoyance for everyone, and it also requires an astonishing amount of paper to produce. One of the most satisfying eco-friendly living tips is to find a way to make junk mail stop altogether. Download a phone application that can scan the bar codes on weekly fliers and remove you from the mailing list, or try the Direct Marketing Association’s (DMA) choice mail preference service (dmachoice.org). And for regular mail that you can’t go without, see if you can enroll in paperless options to further cut down on paper waste.
7. Brick your toilet
If you can’t afford to replace your current toilet with a low-flow model, put a brick in your toilet tank. This takes up room that would otherwise be filled with water, and although this advice may sound strange, it is one of the cheapest eco-friendly living tips for those who want to reduce their water bill without having to install new plumbing.