Reducing your waste and saving money go hand and hand, so I’m sharing my 10 favorite ways so save money by going zero waste!
Zero Waste Habit One: Switch to a reusable water bottle.
Most of us are very fortunate to have access to clean drinking water, yet we waste money on bottled water. Depending on you lifestyle you can easily carry a cup or bottle and refill as needed.
The average American spends $100 a year on bottled water, and uses 167 water bottles but only recycles 38. Ditch the bottle and switch to tap or filtered.
Zero Waste Habit Two: Paper Towels
The average family spends about $200 a year on paper towels.
About 51,000 trees are required to replace the amount of paper towels we discard in a day.
Globally we discard 254 million tons of paper towels every year. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Tips to Switch:
1) Keep a stack of dinner napkins for when you have company so they have something to use. I find my every day cloth towels that I use get pretty dingy and I like to have a nicer option for guests. I was able to get 10 matching cotton napkins for less than $5 at the thrift store.
2) Purchase 10 dark colored towels and 10 light colored towels. Dark for cleaning up messes and light for drying you hands/dishes.
3) When you are out, opt for hand dryers when available, or shake your hands and use one towel instead of 2 or 3.
Zero Waste Habit Three: Menstrual Cups
The average woman spends $120 a year on tampons and pads. Averaging about $4,800 for the average women’s cycle life (40 years) This equals about 250 lbs of trash in that time
I have been using mine for 5 years and have not bought a pad or tampon since switching to the diva cup. It is a bit more expensive than a pack of tampons but it pays for itself in a few months. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ What are your thoughts on menstrual cups? ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I’d love to answer any questions to those that are scared to make the switch.
Zero Waste Habit Four: Safety Razor
The average woman spends $130 a year on razors alone (not including shaving creams/gels). Men average $100 a year. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ An estimated 2 BILLION razors (read in Dr. Evils voice) are thrown away each year. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Double edge razors take refillable blades that cost pennies compared to the plastic ones and they last longer if properly dried and taken care of. The amazing thing with safety razors is that when you are done with you razor blade, you can put them in salt (this helps them start to rust) and let them sit for a while, then bury them in a safe spot and they will naturally decompose over time.
The average family goes through about 1,000 plastic sandwich bags and 24 rolls of plastic wrap. That’s is about $200 a year. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Americans make enough plastic film to shrink-wrap the state of Texas every year ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I love to use beeswrap for cheese, leftover veggies, and to top bowls. Beeswrap is a cotton cloth coated in bees wax and with the heat of your hand, it seals. It’s not spill proof but works great for keeping a bowl of food fresh. For the most affordable option of food storage, head to you local thrift store and grab some mason jars with lids, those are the best container for practically any leftover you have. Another simple way to store food is a bowl with a plate!
Zero Waste Habit Six: Cleaning Products
Americans spend anywhere form $500-$800 a year on cleaning products. A lot of these cleaners are filled with harmful chemicals and are made for only one job, such as window cleaner, floor cleaner, toilet cleaner, furniture polish, laundry soap, fabric softener etc. the list goes on and on. I find sticking with a few basic cleaners I am able to clean anything in my house, keep my pantry chemical & clutter free and save money at the same time. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ For laundry, dishes, counters, and bathroom I buy bulk Dr. Bronners Sal Suds and dilute based on what I’m cleaning.Vinegar is great for windows, floors, and bathrooms. Baking soda also works great for soap build up in showers when mixed with warm vinegar. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ What are your favorite zero waste ways to keep your house clean?
Zero Waste Habit Seven: Repair
The average American discards 68 lbs of clothing a year. Clothing averages 7 wears before it’s tossed or donated. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Buy secondhand when possible and choose quality over quantity. Try to choose natural fibers like cotton, wool, silk, rayon.
Buy less and appreciate what you have. Wear it, Care for it, Repair it, Repeat.
Zero Waste Habit Eight: Food Waste
The average American throws away $300-$600 worth of food a year.
40% of food is wasted a year in America and 1/3 of the food in the world is wasted. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Simple ways to lower food waste is to purchase what you need as you need it, shop more frequently and use what you have. Learn to store you food properly, such as storing produce in jars like flowers to keep it hydrated, freeze items before they go bad, and eat your leftovers or find creative ways to make them something a little different.
Zero Waste Habit Nine: Toiletries
Simplify you toiletries, there is a cream for everything these days and we end up buying tons of products we don’t even end up using let alone they contain toxic ingredients that are not only bad for us but bad for the environment since they typically are not biodegradable.
I love to use baking soda as tooth paste, shampoo once a month to remove build up, and as an exfoliant for clogged pores.
A simple bar of soap or shampoo bar works great as shampoo, body wash, and for shaving. Think multi purpose when it comes to bathroom toiletries and you will save on money and cluttered cabinets.
Zero Waste Habit Ten: Coffee
Millennials spend more money on coffee than their retirement plans and the average American spends $1,100 a year on coffee.
58 BILLION paper cups are thrown away every year in America.
Save you money and single use cups by brewing your coffee at home. My husband and I love to make cold brew in batches to save time in the morning.