How to Shop Sustainably

by Stephanie Cochrane, The Waste Less Shop

The easy thing to do is go with the flow and plead ignorance, but the truth is unavoidable; we HAVE to change. Here are some easy but important tips to remember when making efforts to shop sustainably.

sustainable market bag and dish brushes

No One is Perfect

What matters is that we all take small steps in a positive direction to show the world where we want to go. The big brands won’t change as long as we are buying their environmentally toxic products, we have to use our spending power to vote for the kind of businesses we want to see more of.

Only Buy What You Need

It can be tempting to buy allll of the things. Trust me, I know. But our consume, consume, consume society is sucking our planet’s resources dry and simultaneously covering it with waste. When making purchases, think… do I need this?

Invest in Quality

Sometimes it’s hard to justify spending more for items that are organic, local, or handmade- and sometimes it’s just financially not possible. The products are a little more expensive up front than what you’ll find at the mega-market, but they also last MUCH longer making them more affordable overall.

Use What You Have

Before throwing away/recycling all of the plastic in your house, use what you have!  It’s important to use the full lifetime of an item before discarding it. Repurposing takes much less energy than recycling!

Consolidate Orders

When shopping online, consider the importance of placing one larger order vs. multiple small orders. If you know you will need a year’s worth of toothpaste or shampoo, don’t order every other month! Order once!

Buy Local & Secondhand

Shopping secondhand can seem time consuming, but it’s fun when you have a free day to spend with a friend! Buying truly locally made products is difficult, but you can start going to the Farmers Market for produce or simply support local businesses.