Reduce Waste With Things You Already Own

Starting a sustainable lifestyle can be daunting when you think about all the eco-friendly products you’ll have to buy – which is so ironic! BUT, there’s a pretty good chance you already own some things that will help kick start your zero waste journey. 

  1. Reusable Water Bottle

You don’t even have to invest in some fancy shmancy bottle. You’ve probably have some cheap/free bottles lying around and they do the trick just fine.

  1. Food Storage (To-Go) Containers

Even if it’s plastic, a lot of us have containers to store leftovers. Just take these containers on the go to avoid non-reusable travel items and waste from purchased food (plus you’ll save money).

  1. Your Clothes
The shirt can be found here

If outfit repeating isn’t your thing, just restyle or repurpose your clothes. Look for ways to wear an item in a way that makes it look like a different piece. You can also flip it to actually make something new. 

  1. Natural Cleaners 

Instead of purchasing all types of cleaners, you probably have the ingredients for some natural, multi-use cleaners. Combine baking soda and water or vinegar and water for a variety of surfaces. 

  1. Old Notebooks

I used to be totally guilty of buying all new school supplies each year when I had perfectly good supplies leftover from the year before. Use those year old pens and pencils and folders because they’ll work just fine. If my notebooks are even half used, I’ll tear out and recycle those pages and reuse the notebook for a class where I won’t need a whole one. I’ll also keep unfinished notebooks around to tear out loose leaf pages instead of buying a loose leaf pack.

  1. Grocery Bag/Tote Bag

Anything from a backpack to tote bag or even a duffle is perfect to bring on any shopping trip to avoid plastic bags.

  1. Dish Towels

Hand rags and dish towels can do more than wipe a dish dry. Rather than using paper towels, use old rags or even old t shirts that can be washed and reused. 

  1. Storage Containers
Brought an old quinoa container to bulk bins and filled it up with chia seeds.

I know it’s super cute to have the Pinterest perfect pantry with matching glass containers for bulk items, but using containers you already own is just as functional. Utilize any containers you have lying around that aren’t being used. You can also just reuse packaging that food comes in. Bring those empty containers to your grocery store bulk bins and refill rather than completely rebuy.

By using these items in a mindful way, you’re already practicing a sustainable lifestyle. You can view this list as a starting point, but if this exhausts your sustainable practices, that’s great too! Anything and everything makes a difference!

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