10 Things We Can Give Up in Order to Save the Environment
In the modern world, it’s hard to find a person that has never heard of minimalism. To put it simply, it’s a lifestyle whose purpose is to have as few things as possible — only those that are really necessary or that make us really happy. Minimalism can be adopted as a way to show that we care about our planet, because buying fewer things or buying high-quality things leads to reducing the amount of waste we produce, and taking care of our health and our environment.
We at Bright Side fully support this direction and we try to follow its principles as much as possible. Today, we have prepared several tips on how to rationalize our lives and save some money.
1. Glass containers instead of plastic ones
Glass is definitely the preferred material over plastic. This material is much safer and more eco-friendly than plastic. Glass containers are more durable, and, unlike plastic ones, they are good for both low and high temperatures. Besides, you can store any foods in glass: cooked, raw, sweet, and sour. These containers can be washed in a dishwasher and used in ovens.
2. Not using different kitchen appliances
Most of the time, we don’t need a lot of things to cook food — a stove, an oven, a microwave oven. Of course, some people can’t live without their favorite toasters or waffle makers. But these devices mostly collect dust on the shelves. You can save both money and space if you buy the things you really need instead of a new coffee or yogurt maker.
This is exactly the example of buying something expensive once to save money in the long-term. You don’t need those good-looking sandals at a discount that you will only wear 3 times in your life. It’s much better to have several pairs of shoes for different purposes, like shoes, boots, sneakers, and sandals. You’ll use these shoes for a long time.
The point of minimalism is to have only the necessary number of things. It means that you don’t need a set of 20 plates “in case you have guests” or another cute cup. Don’t buy things you don’t really need. Just buy the plates you use every day. For most situations, this will be enough.
In the modern world, a bag is not a decorative accessory, but an absolutely necessary thing. But from time to time, the huge number of different bags is more of a problem. Just like shoes, it’s better to have 2-3 bags for different purposes. They should be of good quality and reliable.
6. Leaf tea instead of teabags
Even regular teabags contain microparticles of plastic. If you really dislike tea leaves in your cup, you can buy a metal strainer — just put the leaves into it and place it in hot water.
7. Beauty products
You can still use good-quality beauty products but it is better to limit yourself to the absolute minimum. Different lotions, creams, and other products look great in stores, but do we really need all of them? They don’t help our wallets and often damage our skin.
A classic razor is, of course, much more expensive than a plastic alternative but it is also more durable — and you only need to replace the blades. These razors are usually made of stainless steel, they are easy to wash, and the blades are way cheaper than the replaceable cassettes of famous brands.
9. Washcloths made of natural materials instead of plastic
When choosing a washcloth, make sure you buy one made of natural materials. You can choose from loofahs (quite soft), nettle fiber (moderate), and bast fiber (hard). These materials are safe for your health, completely biodegradable, and simple to use.
10. Beeswax wrap instead of plastic wrap
This is a safe and eco-friendly replacement for regular plastic film. You can buy or make beeswax wrap yourself — you just need cotton fabric and wax. You can use this wrap many times as a cover for plates with food, or you can wrap bread, parsley, cheese, or vegetables. Besides, this wrap is washable. One wrap can work for several years if you are careful with it.
I first tried this wrap a few months ago. I didn’t like it at the beginning, and I had to throw it away after 2-3 times of using it, but the next 2 are still used to this day. Before that, I used to cover food with regular paper towels — they also work fine. The food remains fresh and there’s no condensed water like there usually is with plastic wrap.
What’s your attitude toward minimalism? Do you use anything from our list in your everyday life?