1. In the Bag
One of the best things that you can do for the planet on a daily basis is swap out plastic shopping bags for a few trusty, reusable carryalls. Foldable, uber-light ones are cute and cheap, so we’re guessing you already bring them along on grocery runs. Now, it’s time to step it up. Make cotton canvas totes a lifestyle staple to be carried at all times alongside your keys and phone. Don’t just use them at the grocery store — books, pharmacy items, or new clothes don’t need to come home with you in a plastic bag. As for groceries, add three or four smaller cloth produce bags to the rotation. “Store your mushrooms, apples, and all other produce in your cloth bags, or use them when you shop for bulk items like rice or nuts,” says Stevie Van Horn, the environmentalist blogger behind the Instagram account @stevieyaaaay. “I can avoid 90% of all plastic packaging by just bringing these along with me.”
2. On a Roll
Most stores these days offer the option of having a receipt emailed instead of printed. It might seem like a small thing, but added up over the years, those paper rolls equal forests of unnecessary paper. (Besides, who wouldn’t want to avoid frantically pouring out an overstuffed wallet to find that one receipt you need to make a return?)
3. The Touch, The Feel
The next time you’re buying a new wardrobe staple, pay attention to the style and the label. Being aware of the fabrics you’re buying is a smart habit to get into. There’s no single holy grail, but cotton is by far a top choice for its natural, plant-based properties. The fabric’s durability also means that you can invest in fewer, better pieces rather than constantly stocking up on low-quality disposable ones. Not to mention, cotton is very breathable and doesn’t retain odours, which equals less money, energy, and water spent on laundry.