Eco-friendly living is fast becoming a lifestyle choice that many of us are wanting to adopt. It’s no secret that the impact we’re having on the planet today is causing all sorts of issues that future generations will have to pay for – reason alone for all of us to do our bit in helping the environment any way we can.
So have you been wondering how to live an environmentally-friendly life? Wonder no more. From ditching plastic and eating less meat to going solar and choosing sustainable clothing, we’ve rounded up the key ways to nail eco-friendly living with ease. The planet will thank you for it.
1. Ditch plastic
We all know by now how using plastic has a detrimental impact on the environment. Most big supermarket chains have banned single-use plastic bags, encouraging us all to invest in a trusty tote. If you haven’t done this already, make this the year you do so. There are so many gorgeous reusable shopping bags out there to choose from whether they’re made from recycled materials or organic fabric. Bonus: they fold up easily in your handbag so you’re always prepared for a spontaneous supermarket trip.
Reusable coffee cups are another quick and easy ticket to eco-friendly living. The handy alternatives to disposable coffee cups allow you to have your daily caffeine hit guilt free. Plus, most coffee shops give discounts when you bring your own cup. There’s no reason to not take the leap as you will save money in the long run. Still using plastic straws? It’s time for those days to come to an end. Bamboo or metal straws are the way forward when it comes to how to live an environmentally-friendly life!
2. Wash clothes using cold water
Ok, maybe not all your clothes. It's important to ensure underwear and towels go through a hot wash to ensure all bacteria is killed, but that's not to say all your clothes need a hot wash every time. Washing clothes using cold water will not only save you money, but it will use less energy too.
3. Eat less meat
We’re not saying you have to give up meat altogether (although to all the vegans out there, we applaud your dedication!). But according to Greenpeace, even cutting down on your meat intake can have hugely positive effects on the environment. Greenpeace states the “livestock sector – raising cows, pigs and chickens – generates as much greenhouse gas emissions as all cars, trucks and automobiles combined.” Surely that fact alone is enough to prompt us to switch to a predominantly plant-based diet?
So what exactly can you eat on a plant-based diet? Well, we’re glad you asked. There are heaps of delicious foods that can remain in your diet when you decide to eat less or ditch meat completely. Fruit, veggies and whole grains should make up the majority of your diet, while nuts, seeds and legumes should also be part of your daily eating habits. If you do decide to remain eating meat, fish and dairy, cut down your intake and see if you notice any difference in how you look and feel.
4. Love your leftovers
It's no news that we're a wasteful world. How many times have you been in a cafe or restaurant and noticed people leaving half their plate? Or what about your food at home? Stocked up on veggies for the week and by the time you go to eat them it's time to throw them away because they've gone bad? It's time to start buying less and eating fresh. Leftovers? Great, that's lunch for tomorrow sorted.
5. Go solar
We should all try to use less energy than we do, but to really nail eco-friendly living we suggest going solar. If you haven’t already, why not invest in solar panels for your home this year? While the installation fee will set you back, this sustainable choice will cut down your electricity bills substantially and save you heaps of money in the long run.
But these days, solar panels on your roof are just the beginning. Here’s a list of other ideas you could incorporate into your home when wondering how to live an environmentally-friendly life.
Solar water heater
Solar-powered mobile charger
Solar-powered air conditioner
Solar energy-based water pumps
Solar energy-based water purification system
Obviously, investing in all the above would make it a very expensive year! Dip your toes in by picking one or two ways to incorporate solar power into your life. If solar power is just financially out the question this year, try to at least limit your energy usage. A great starting point is compact fluorescent (CFL) bulbs, which use roughly 80% lesser energy and can last 20 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs.
6. Repair, reuse, recycle
There are so many ways to reuse and recycle our belongings and the things we consume before simply throwing them away. So what, your jeans have a few holes in them? Rock the look, or freshen up on your sewing skills. Had a wardrobe clear out recently? You’ll likely discover a heap of old gems, perhaps some you haven’t even worn, which you can give a spin this year.
Aside from clothing, coffee grounds are something else you can reuse in countless different ways when focusing on eco-friendly living. Their gritty texture makes them perfect for mixing into a bar of vegan soap and creating a heavy-duty body scrub. You can also add leftover coffee to your compost bin to create a rich mixture that will help your garden thrive.
7. Reduce your carbon footprint
When considering how to live an environmentally-friendly life, reducing your carbon footprint is one of the most significant changes you can make. Transportation generates the largest share of greenhouse gas emissions, which is what makes public transport such a great choice for the environment whenever you can take it.
We’re not saying ditch your car altogether, but why not leave it at home during the week and catch the bus or train to work? Sure, it can get a bit cramped at rush hour. But think how great it’ll feel not getting stuck in traffic when you catch the train. Even better, if you don't live too far from work, why not cycle, jog or walk?
Another great way to reduce your carbon footprint is to support local producers. The food you buy in big supermarket chains has often travelled thousands of kilometres, whereas local producers will have hardly any carbon footprint at all. Not to mention buying local is fresher and healthier!
8. Switch to paperless
If you haven't already, it's time to jump on the digital train and switch your post to paperless. There's simply no need to be getting all that junk mail you're only going to throw away (well, recycle, we hope!). These days, pretty much all banks, internet providers and other companies you receive those beloved bills from will be more than happy to see you switch from paper bills to digital. So, what are you waiting for?
9. Choose sustainable clothing
When it comes to eco-friendly living, the benefits of wearing sustainable clothing are endless. It can reduce the number of pesticides released into the environment. You can support fair trade. You can reduce toxic waste. You can use less of the world’s resources. The quality will be higher. The list goes on and on.
Here at Boody, we’re committed to maintaining a responsible process when creating our garments. We only use certified organically-grown bamboo fibre, which has no pesticides, fertilisers or insecticides. The bamboo plantations we use produce 30% more oxygen than an equivalent area of trees and use 0% of the water required to grow cotton – yes, that’s correct! We only use rainwater to grow our bamboo. Bamboo also happens to be the fastest-growing woody plant in the world – some species shoot up as much as a metre a day!
On top of all this, we use eco-friendly packaging, a closed-loop system that recycles all the water used to make our fabrics and we have a smaller carbon footprint by delivering our items by sea freight. Phew, finally clothing you can feel good about wearing! Shop our women’s, men’s and baby collections now.
Whatever you decide to do to tackle eco-friendly living, just be sure not to be too hard on yourself. You’re doing the best you can, which is more than enough. Just imagine if everyone did their bit to make the planet a better place? We have a feeling we’d be well on our way by now...