Sustainable Living Starts with Small Changes!

As some of you may know, I have been trying to make small changes to be more sustainable in 2020 . For me, whilst some may preach that global warming isn't real, I well and truly believe it is. This next year I want to do more, I want to be better. 

At work, with so much single use personal protective equipment and even more waste than normal, I really want my personal life to be as minimally wasteful as possible. Since I've moved into my new house, I am pleased to say that the majority of my rubbish is recycled. I manage to get thought roughly 3 small 15L bin bags each fortnight and the rest is put in the recycling bin. I also have minimised food waste by eating and keeping track of what I have and the use by dates. Plus, meal planning I've found is really important, especially when I'm not home alone. 

I've also had so many packages delivered with unnecessary copious amounts of packaging and whilst most of it is plastic free, I still find it very excessive. Lil Packaging is an eco-friendly packaging company, supplying innovative packaging solutions to businesses of any sizes whilst banning the plastic. As of last year, they're officially a fully plastic-free company, making them a truly great company to work with. They have so many different options of packaging and with so many people posting Christmas presents this year, they are the perfect solution! Once I have sold out of my current packaging for Hannah's Lips UK, I plan on making more sustainable options and this looks like it could be the ideal company to go with. 

Somewhat on the same wavelength is cling film. Did you know it never breaks down! I genuinely hate using it and try to avoid at all costs. I've bought the beeswax wraps in the past and whilst they're pretty and easy to use, they don't work well for long so I haven't loved them. Instead, I bought a 20 pack of lunchboxes of all different sizes and although it's more washing up, it stores food safely and perfectly. Similarly, I've seen lots of people using the stretchable lids over bowls and other containers which also work well. Plus, although I ended up returning these reusable bags because they were too big for the purpose I wanted them for, they are a really great idea otherwise! 

I've also made a conscious effort to reduce water, electricity and heating, by turning off when I'm not in the room and reducing where possible. Importantly for me, I wanted an electricity company that had a strong focus on renewable energy. I found Bulb used 100% renewable energy from solar, wind and hydro and were relatively affordable compared to others. You can also switch your energy provider to Bulb and get £50 back if you sign up. Their gas is also 100% carbon neutral too. They offset the emissions by supporting carbon reduction projects around the world. Knowing that the energy I'm using isn't contributing to the environmental damage is a comfort.

Whilst I'm not quite at the level of full eco-friendly living, I'm glad the University of Nottingham I've been a part of for the past 3 years also plays a huge part in reducing emissions and forming a more sustainable society. Last year, I received 2 Sustainability Awards at the inaugural event. The university aims to achieve low carbon buildings, to receive the ambitious target of BREEAM Excellent as a minimum for all new capital projects. They also launched a Zero Waste Shop allowing students to buy unpackaged items in reusable containers and I think it's a great idea. Interestingly, since originally writing this post, the university has announced it is third most sustainable university in the world, according to the 2020 Greenmetric World University Rankings! 

I've been exploring other companies that help reduce waste or are more environmentally friendly, hence sustainable in some way. I've shared a few in depth reviews on my blog before and I want to continue to explore more companies further. So far, I've tried Wild deodrant, Bumboo toilet paper and Smol laundry. Smol also do other products with zero plastic and I really want to try both of them at some point, especially the fabric softener. As I dermaplaning, that was one of the areas I felt I was wasting a lot. Not that I go through the little disposable plastic ones that quickly, but after a couple of uses, the blade is no longer sharp enough and ends up cutting my face. I tried to switch to dermaplaning with a safety razor and I've given it a few more tries but I still don't love it. 

What other areas could I switch up to make my life more sustainable? Leave some ideas in the comments below.