Embrace Zero Waste Living
Zero waste is not all about buying stuff. The zero-waste lifestyle is not a consumer lifestyle.
If we continue to talk about zero waste living in terms of the things we can buy, and encourage more shopping and the accumulation of stuff, we’re staying on the consumer treadmill and still using resources at an alarming rate.
The good news is plenty of things that lead to living zero waste can be done for free! No spending required.
Here’s how you can embrace zero waste living without buying anything.
1. Glass Jars
Glass jars are your zero-waste friend! And even better, they are free!
Stop recycling your glass jars and save them for re-use. Rescue glass jars out of your friend’s recycling bin. Rescue glass jars from café and restaurant recycling bins. Ask from your local Buy Nothing group, or zero waste/sustainable living Facebook Group. Put an ad on Gumtree or Craigslist asking for free jars.
Glass jars replace so many other storage containers, and there is no need to buy one. If a jar breaks, there is a plentiful supply of more free glass jars almost everywhere we go.
2. Eat Your Food Scraps
So much food that we throw away, we can eat. I don’t mean stuff that was edible but is now past its use-by date, I mean food that IS still perfectly edible… we just don’t know how to use it.
Using scraps that we would usually throw in the bin makes the household budget go much further.
Wash potato peelings, toss in a little oil and then bake in the oven for 10 mins or so each side until crispy. Free potato chips!
Rather than chucking the broccoli stalk, cut the outer edges off, and dice or slice the soft green core. Add to pasta, stir-fries and curries just as you would with the florets.
3. Cleaning Cloths / Wipes
There’s no need to buy cleaning cloths, wipes, rags, paper towel or tissues. We can simply repurpose old fabric that we would previously have recycled as rags. Old towels, bedding, T-shirts, work shirts… even underpants, if you’re not faint-hearted.
Typically, natural fibers work better over completely plastic polyester fabric.
4. Borrow before Buying
We often don’t need the thing that we buy, we need the result that it offers. We don’t need a drill; we need a hole in the wall. We don’t need a blender; we need to puree vegetables for a one-off recipe.
5. Find for Free/Second hand
If we need the thing, we still don’t have to buy it new, or even second-hand. We can find it for free. We can ask friends, family, neighbors or colleagues, we can look for ads on online classifieds, we can put requests in Buy Nothing groups, and we can trawl verge pickups looking for the item.
Second-hand means no packaging, it also means keeping existing items in circulation and reducing demand for new products, saving resources. Second-hand doesn’t always mean cheap. Second-hand and free – well, that’s within everyone’s budget.
At The EcoFairy, our goal is to help you build a more sustainable life by offering you a line of reusable products. We offer products that last and that will help you reduce the amount of plastic you use.
More info on our website: https://www.theecofairy.com