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Earth Day was this past Sunday and, in traditional Valery fashion, I totally forgot about it until the day of and I DEFINITELY didn’t think to prep a post about sustainability practices. But, my husband and I have worked really hard the last few years to be more sustainable and, even though I’m late, I want to share a little bit about my journey. I don’t claim to be a “sustainable blogger” because I have a LOT to work on, but I believe in baby steps and gradual growth so I thought maybe sharing some our easy sustainability practices might inspire you to make the same changes!
I’ve always been passionate about recycling but honestly….that was about as far as my sustainability practices went for a really long time. I just didn’t think about it. I wasn’t ready to take the journey yet. Then I started thrifting a few years ago and, in addition to it being really fun, I realized the environmental benefits, too! My husband started working at a sustainability company here in Denver last year, which furthered our interest in being more sustainable so…here we are.
Easy Sustainability Practices
Yes, there *is* a reason I put outfit photos with this post! I’m styling the thrifted jumpsuit I wore a few weeks ago on the blog (and y’all, I have worn it a bunch of other times, too). I used to be REALLY bad about only wearing things once so I’m trying hard to only purchase Items I’ll wear over and over again and then…ya know, I have to actually do it.
ALWAYS use reusable totes
This is a pretty common one but at the very least, take some with you when you go to the grocery store. You’ll save SO many plastic bags!
Rely on natural light during the day
Another easy one…open those blinds!
Buy from brands that care
I previously showcased The New Blak on the blog and they definitely fall into the category of “brands that care.” I know that’s kind of a broad term, but for me, it’s brands that are ethical with their production, limit packaging, and pay their employees fairly. I’ll admit, I’m not perfect on this one, but I’m definitely trying. I don’t think I’ve bought anything from Forever 21 in at least 6 months!
Limit shower time
I love a good, long shower as much as anyone else but I try to limit those to just a few per month. For the most part, I take 3 minute showers, besides the once a week when I wash my hair.
Try to buy secondhand, especially with furniture and clothes
I’m hoping to share a “home tour” soon, but it has been a work in progress for quite some time. That being said, we’ve purchased a lot of our furniture secondhand and I couldn’t be happier! You can find some AMAZING pieces, help the environment, and save a ton of money, too. Also there’s nothing quite like the thrill of finding the EXACT thing you’ve been hunting for at an amazing price (just ask my husband how many times I gushed about our new dresser). I also love the fact that my dresser has been around since the 1960s and was treasured by someone else before it came into my home.
Purchase items with less packaging
This is kind of a new one for me, but lately I’ve tried to be more intentional with the products I buy. I try to go for things with little or no plastic and when possible, I buy in bulk. We have an amazing place in Denver called Zero Market where you bring your own containers to fill with household items like cleaning supplies, essential oils, bath products and teas. It’s incredible and such a fun place, too!
Limit waste from menstrual products
Replacing plastic with glass in the kitchen
I’ve been a “cheap plastic leftover container” gal for like….forever. But honestly, glass is WAY better in pretty much every way – I’m a recent convert. It’s better for the environment, lasts longer, doesn’t stain or smell, it’s easier to clean, and you can reheat stuff in it! We were able to get some great Pyrex containers for half off at our grocery store, so keep your eyes peeled for sales. You can also use glass jars for a LOT more stuff than I realized! Wash those marinara sauce jars and reuse them! I’m also planning on buying some silicone bags soon so we won’t need plastic bags anymore. Little by little!
What about you? Share your sustainability practices with me so we can all get better together! Every little change counts.