Simple Sustainable Lifestyle Swaps To Try

03.11.20

Creating more sustainable lifestyle habits is something I’ve been working on for a while now and it’s been a slow and steady process. When I need to replace something in my day-to-day life I simply do my best to find an option that’s thoughtfully made with a priority on sustainability. Today I’m sharing a compilation of all the swaps I’ve made so far and those that I’m still working on.

While this list offers lots of great products, using up what you have or making do without buying new is, of course, the most sustainable approach. That said, there are some everyday essentials that we can’t always go without so a more thoughtful, less wasteful approach is the best option. Below you’ll find a list of the functional sustainable items I’ve been using along with some suggested changes that are completely free!

I realize that I’m not an expert in this department so I’ve included a list of the sustainability champions I follow for inspiration and knowledge. I hope this post sparks some new ideas for you and as always, I’d love to hear your recommendations too!


This post was not produced in partnership with any brands mentioned but does contain affiliate links. If you see something you like and decide to shop through the links included, I may earn commission on a sale at no additional cost to you. All opinions are always my own. Thanks for supporting Style Bee!


Style Bee - Sustainable Swaps

Here are the items I’m aiming to use less and what I’ve swapped them out with:



1 | Plastic Bags

Using Instead: French Market Bags / Reusables / Produce Hampers

2 | Paper Towel

Using Instead: Swedish Sponge Cloths

3 | Takeaway Coffee Cups

Using Instead: Porter Mug

4 | Plastic Water Bottles

Using Instead: Porter Glass Reusable Bottle

5 | Plastic Wrap

Using Instead: Beeswax Reusable Wraps

6 | Disposable Sponges & Scrubbers

Using Instead: Ceramic Soap Dispenser & Dish Brush

7 | Plastic Smoothie Straws

Using Instead: Metal or Glass Straws

8 | Coffee Filters

Using Instead: Stainless Steel Filter Cone

9 | Plastic Hand Soap Dispensers

Using Instead: Glass Containers & Refill (I just ordered this starter pack)

10 | Makeup Removing Wipes

Using Instead: Mini Cleansing Cloths



More Swaps I’m Working On



Wrapping Paper

Using Instead: Packing paper saved from deliveries

Period Pads

Using Instead: Period-Proof Undies

Ziploc Bags

Using Instead: Reusable Snack Bags

Plastic Tupperware

Using Instead: Glass Tupperware Containers

Laundry Detergent Containers

Using Instead: Detergent Strips

Plastic Shampoo & Conditioner Bottles

Using Instead: Bars & Refills

Tea Bags

Using Instead: Reusable Infuser



A FEW SPOTS TO SHOP FOR SUSTAINABLE GOODS


Downtown Guelph:


ETSY – Etsy recently announced that they’re going to offset 100% of carbon emissions generated by shipping.

HELEN MILAN HOME

JUNE HOME SUPPLY (Canadian-Based)

KINSFŌLK SHOP (Canadian-Based)

NEED SUPPLY

OLD FAITHFUL SHOP (Canadian-Based)

PUBLIC GOODS | Save 25% on your first order with code: LEEPGA

WELL.CA (Canadian-Based)

W&P DESIGN



FREE & EASY WAYS TO REDUCE YOUR CARBON FOOTPRINT


Use up what you’ve got. Whether it’s using veggie scraps to make broth or old linens as cleaning rags. Get creative and try to use up what you can before replacing something.

Reduce your meat consumption by opting for a more plant based diet. The Minimalist Baker has an incredible library of recipes.

Wash your laundry in cold water and hang dry whenever possible.

Turn down the thermostat overnight or while you’re away.

Use leftover nightstand water for your plants.

Walk / Bike / Carpool / Bus / Train / Public Transit when possible instead of driving.

Mend your clothes and use old t-shirts as rags instead of just throwing them away.

Opt for standard shipping over 2-day and express options.

Vote for representatives that prioritize environmental protection and green energy initiatives.


This article has 100 great ideas to reduce waste and improve energy efficiency in your home.


A FEW FOLKS TO FOLLOW FOR MORE SUSTAINABLE LIVING INFO & INSPO


@ZERO.WASTE.COLLECTIVE

@ECOWARRIORPRINCESS

@GREENGIRLLEAH

@HALEYBOYD

@CALLMEFLOWERCHILD

@DOMINIQUEDRAKEFORD

@WORLDECONOMICFORUM


I’ll be sharing more sustainable products, articles and inspiration on my latest Pinterest board:

\\ SUSTAIN //



Care to share your tips for establishing more sustainable home habits? I’d love to hear them!

Leave me a comment here!

  1. Karli says:

    One of the biggest questions you have to ask first is “do I even use this regularly?” For instance, if you never drink from straws, you create more waste by purchasing a reusable straw. Right? These are some great suggestions!

    After 5 years of being paper towel free (with a toddler!), towels like the ones below are AWESOME (we still have the same set with plenty of life left in them). They’re meant for shop use, so they wear really well and get softer over time. We wash them every week and even our son know where to get them/put away the dirty ones.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B003YCEN6I?colid=9K5UBF9QDLP4&coliid=I35L100AGHCRSU&ref_=wr_ov_pt

    • That’s such a great point Karli. Thanks for sharing the towels you use. 5 years with a toddler is an epic feat! Stay well and have a good weekend. xo

  2. SARA says:

    Hi, i’m curious about the Swedish Sponge cloths. I would love to replace paper towels, but sigh…with kids I do use them a lot. I bought a similar looking product from Pampered chef years ago, but i hated it because they were stiff and hard when dry. So they were very hard to use/fold etc. until they were already fairly damp! And they stained badly almost immediately. Are these cloths soft/flexible when dry or do they stiffen up? thanks.

  3. Rebecca says:

    Thank you so much for this terrific set of suggestions! It is a treasure trove of sustainable products and practices.

  4. Lucy says:

    Lee I love this!! Combatting global warming can feel insurmountable sometimes, especially as an individual. This is a great list of totally actionable, easy swaps to make – some of which I’ve made, and some of which are new to me (like the sponges – never even thought twice about it!). Small steps in the right direction 🙂

    • It is very daunting but I agree that small changes add up. So glad you’ve made some of the swaps already and got some new ideas. Thanks for reading Lucy!

  5. Alice says:

    Great list! I don’t know why the reuseable mesh produce bags aren’t more popular. In my state you have to bring your own bags to the grocery store anyways, so it’s not even an extra thing to remember. My local Whole Foods sells them but the cashiers are always surprised to see mine! Easiest. Swap. Ever.

  6. Blair Spencer says:

    I’ve started to use a diva cup instead of tampons (takes a while to get used to) and a safety razor instead of plastic razors. The initial investment of the handle is the worst (I bought mine for $70) but the razor refills themselves are so economical!

    • Thanks for sharing these swaps Blair! I haven’t had luck with menstrual cups but I’m not giving up yet. Sounds like you’ve got a good system with the safety razor too! Stay well. xo

  7. Great information! Thanks for all the sources and ideas. We can all become a little greener. At 70 years of age I am impressed with all you came up with. Have been at this for a while now. Good luck with counseling…..we all need it from time to time.