Sustainable living has sounded like a bit of a buzzword of late. But what really is it? It is the practice of reducing your demand on natural resources, by replacing what you use. I know it is something that we see and hear about brands doing from time to time (think the toilet roll brands that plant a tree for each one that is chopped down). But how can we apply this in our homes? I doubt we all have the space to be planting trees each time we use loo roll or buy a paper notebook.
I have been looking at more and more ways to live more sustainably in our home, from reducing the meat and animal products that we eat, to only using plastic products that can be recycled, as well as being more conscious of the things that we buy for our home. Because it isn’t just always about what we can do to replace the resources that we use. By choosing the brands and businesses that promote sustainability for the things we buy, is also a good way to go. More and more are doing it, but as a whole, we have a long way to go.
When you think about it, current consumer culture has some shortcomings. The products that we buy for our home are not built to last, and like ‘fast fashion’, they are just ‘fast’. Made of flimsy materials, lack value, and often have short warranties. Meaning that you need to spend again if it breaks after a couple of years. If the materials aren’t recyclable or sustainable ones, then it just ends up as waste.
Brands like MADE TO LAST have guarantees for each product, so you can see what you are getting and the promised quality. Sustainability can also be about how far things have had to travel, so as it is British Isle made, it can help local industry, tradespeople, and it doesn’t outsource to areas where working conditions are going to be cheap. Because reliance on cheap goods means higher costs for workers (low wages), higher costs for the planet (excess resource usage and pollution), and that trickles down as you’re likely to need to buy again after a short amount of time as the product isn’t quality. Quality products can outlast cheaper ones, where they can be better value for money.
The saying ‘buy cheap and you buy twice’ can be very true with these kind of products.
Take this table lamp from their site, for example. It comes with a two year guarantee, to cover the workmanship, but it is a sturdy table lamp with a steel base with a dark brown, matt copper finish. It is well made, the materials are quality; you can tell by the way it is put together and the weight of it all, rather than a flimsy material. You can get a lampshade for the table lamp, but for now, I thought a lamp with a large, funky, LED filament bulb would look really stylish for by my bed.
Balance Table Lamp – £150
If you are wanting to move to more sustainable living, then here are some simple things that you can start doing today in your own home:
- CUT DOWN ON SINGLE USE PRODUCTS
This is because, even though recycling can be worthwhile, as it helps cut down on landfill waste, starting to buy goods that are built to last is a good move. Moving away from single-use disposable products as soon as possible is going to be good for your wallet, and the environment.
- PRACTICE MINIMALISM
Practicing minimalism in the home sin’t all about just having nothing in your home. It is about having enough for your needs and no excess, from the things in your home to looking for more sustainable clothing, like sustainable printed t-shirts. Each thing in your home will serve a purpose, you’ll recycle more, and be more mindful of the products you use in the home.
- CHANGE THE LIGHTS IN YOUR HOUSE
If you want to reduce the energy that you use in your home, then changing your lightbulbs can be a good way to go. Changing to LED lightbulbs is a quick and easy and it can mean less energy to get the sae amount of light in the home. Large windows can also be a good way to get light (and warmth) into the home too.
- REDUCE FUEL USEAGE
The fuel that you use can have an impact on the environment because of the pollution. Walking more is an easy way to go, as well as being more efficient with your errands. Fewer journeys will mean less pollution, especially compare to what you have been doing currently.
I would be interested to hear your thoughts on sustainable living. I don’t want this to sound preachy at all, as it is still a journey that I am very much at the beginning of. But a few simple things, including the items that we have in our home, can all make a difference.
*collaborative post – all opinions are my own.