TOP 6 At Home Sustainability Hacks.

When I went to write this blog, initially my topic was focused on travel and our ability to make ethical and sustainable choices while on the road. Given that travel may be a long way away for many of us, I decided to focus my energy on the home.

It is no secret that the planet is locked in a strenuous battle to withstand humanity’s growing environmental impact, caused by a variety of contributing factors. Many of these factors can often make us feel powerless and overwhelmed, including co2 emissions, deforestation, urbanization, plastic pollution, and the list goes on.....

Not all sustainability actions have to be difficult or overwhelming.

There are a variety of daily actions within our own control, that could help make a positive impact towards protecting our planet starting right in your own home!!

Continue reading to learn more and discover my TOP 6, at home sustainability hacks, to reduce your everyday environmental impact.

1. Choose Re-usable:


Growing up, I had absolutely no idea of the negative impact everyday products like glad wrap and sandwich bags have on our planet. Once I learned more about single-use plastics, they were the first to go. Replacing these daily items with eco alternatives, including re-usable Tupperware containers, paper bags from the supermarket, lunch boxes, and even compostable products like Sustain Sandwich Bags if you really need to (ensuring to dispose of them correctly).


Original image: Zoe Strapp Photography

2. Choose Paper, Can, or Bulk Packaging:


The average grocery store is jam-packed FULL of small, convenient, plastic-wrapped items for you to buy and enjoy. While it can seem almost impossible to avoid these, there are simple ways to reduce your use of plastic when grocery shopping these include, looking for bulk buy alternatives, e.g., the large bags of rice at the bottom of the shelf or bulk containers of cooking oil. Many products also come with glass alternatives, like your peanut butter, oils, pastes plus, you can never go wrong with loose, fresh produce!

Choosing to make your own snacks is also a great way to avoid single-use plastic, including home-made muesli bars, muffins, and granola. Many of these ingredients are available in either large quantities or paper packaging, at your bulk food store or even online, like flour, nuts, and dried fruit.


Original image: Zoe Strapp Photography

3. Don’t Waste Food:


Take the time to know what is in your fridge! So many people struggle with throwing out food, with the average Victorian home throwing away almost $2200 of food every year. Not only is this a waste of food, energy, and resources but also money.

Things I do to avoid wasting food include, making sure I know what is in my fridge, making a list before grocery shopping, and cleaning out the fridge regularly. After a fresh shop, I will also move all of the older produce to the front, to ensure they get used first.

Finally, if I do find myself with some worse for wear produce, I will make a point of cooking it up in large dishes like curries, soups, or stews while also keeping my extra ripe fruit for some delicious baked goods, including slices, muffins, or even banana bread.

4. Compost your Organic Waste:


Depending on where you live, adding a compost bin to your kitchen can add to your list of positive impacts on our environment. Reducing the amount of waste that goes to landfill or ends up in plastic garbage bags, increasing soil organic matter, adding nutrients back into our soil and reducing the use of petrochemical fertilizers.

If you have a backyard or veggie patch, this is a very simple process to set up and I have attached a link here with some instructions. If you don't have a yard, many suburbs are now offering the ability to put your compost in the green waste bin (as they do here on the Surf Coast) or offer public compost bins within the community, that you can drop your compost off at.

5. Home Cleaning:


Home cleaning can not only require an array of wasteful, disposable products like cleaning chucks, but also deliver harmful chemicals back into our water systems from your everyday cleaning solutions. A few ways I have been working to reduce this impact include, purchasing a pack of washable cleaning cloths where I simply put them through the washing machine when they become dirty. I also look to keep any existing spray bottles or old food jars and re-use these to make my own cleaning products, like your everyday multipurpose cleaning agent (see recipe below).

Homemade All-Purpose Cleaner

· 1/2 c White Vinegar

· 2 Tbsp baking soda

· 10 drops tea tree, lavender or lemon essential oil (for their disinfectant properties)


Mix the vinegar, essential oils and a little water before adding baking soda in a clean spray bottle. Then fill to top with water. Gently shake to mix ingredients, and then spray, wipe with a cloth, and allow it to dry.


Original image: Zoe Strapp Photography

6. Utilise Plastic-Free Bathroom Essentials:


I would say, besides the kitchen, our bathrooms is one of the most common places we use large amounts of plastic. From our shampoo and body wash bottle to razors, skincare and toothbrushes, this room is a great place to start reducing your environmental impact.

A few products I have begun integrating into my bathroom to help with this change include NueBar natural Shampoo & Conditioner bars, natural body soap bars instead of body wash bottles, bamboo toothbrushes, Woohoo natural, waste-free deodorant and locally produced Mia May Oil.


Now, while I am certainly not perfect and know there is still an array of changes I need to make, to achieve a sustainable home and lifestyle. These are a few steps that I have found to make a positive difference in my everyday life and I hope they spark a few ideas, to help you begin your eco journey.

Don’t forget to TAG @zoestrapp on Instagram if you try any of these out, as I would love to see how you go, and please feel to share any tips & tracks you are already doing, that I could add to my routine.

Stay safe & salty everyone

Cheers,

Zoe xxx

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Anglesea, Vic, Australia

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