From buying green cleaning products to organic butter at the farmers’ market, every purchase you make has an impact on the environment. However fret not friends, for a few small changes to your life can help reduce your footprint – here are Ryan Hewlett’s 10 eco hacks to change the way you shop.
1) Make it part of your life and have fun overhauling your mindset. Shopping more sustainably shouldn’t be a fad and it needn’t be difficult or painful. It needs to become a lifestyle choice – make a change for the better and stick with it.
2) Ditch the chemicals – When your cleaning, gardening or cosmetic products are getting low replace them with truly natural, chemical-free, and or organic versions. You’ll be amazed by the choice available out there and you won’t look back.
3) Charity and second hand shops rock. Charity shop bargains give you the feel-good factor of helping other people and the environment and you can find some really amazing stuff on the shelves. Shrug off the fear of smelly old clothes and your grandmother’s home furnishings and be prepared to be proven wrong.
4) Buycott –this free app helps you purchase products that align with your beliefs. You can scan a product to see what brand it belongs to, what company owns the brand, who owns the company and how they line up against your principles.
5) Buy fruit and veg in season – It is one of the easiest ways to cut down on food miles and reduce the impact you have on the environment. If you tie this in with buying locally it’s also great for the local economy.
6) Research ethical clothing brands online. When you need a new pair of trainers or a t-shirt don’t head straight to the high street. Look around online for some of the coolest and freshest eco fashion brands. You’ll get something unique, beautiful and sustainable; some of our favourites are Tripty, Veja and Po-Zu.
7) Borrow instead of buying – Sometimes, items you would normally buy simply don’t get used often enough to justify the purchase. Think about hiring or borrowing; it will save you money and will also cut down on waste.
8) Leave the plastic. One of the simplest ways of making the way shop more sustainable is saying no to plastic bags. This should be especially easy as they now cost you 5p.
9) Repair and reuse rather than replace it. Think about buying things you can reuse, rather than disposable versions. Or buy from companies, like Patagonia, who will repair your purchases for you.
10) Ask your favourite brands to do better. Don’t underestimate the power that you have as a consumer. Brands listen to your voice, they care about your opinion and now thanks to the wonders of social media it’s super easy to get in touch with them.
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