5 Ways I’m Reducing Waste in 2019

by | Jan 1, 2019 | Lifestyle, Minimalism

Interested in zero waste or just simply reducing waste? I’m right there with you. Here are 5 ways I’m reducing waste in 2019. Easy enough for anyone to do!

I have quite a few goals for 2019 and one of them is for reducing waste. While I strongly believe we can (and should!) have goals for ourselves all throughout the year, I must admit that I love the “blank slate” feeling a new year brings. The goal-setter in me gets pretty darn excited about reflecting on years past and planning my road ahead.

Mind you, I’m not always the best planner. I tend to fly by the seat of my pants with a lot of things, if I’m being honest. Works well for me though.

Anyway, reducing my waste is one of my (many) goals or intentions for 2019.

In many ways this is already a prominent feature in my life: I no longer have a car, I bring reusable cloth bags to the grocery store, I use glass jars and containers for most things, and I live in a relatively minimal manner. But in other ways, this is an area I know I can really improve upon.

It dawned on me a little while ago that there were a number of things I still have or use that are so wasteful or so unnecessary. And from this was born an overwhelming desire to explore the alternatives to these common items or conveniences. Here are 5 ways I’m reducing waste in 2019!

1. Nixing Plastic Produce Bags

These have got to be the most wasteful things out there. Don’t get me wrong, they’re super handy when you need a place to put your sopping wet bunch of kale that just got soaked from the misty sprinkler thing, but I cannot stand using them. I even feel bad admitting that most times I go to the grocery store, I do use them.

Not anymore, my friends. Not anymore. I already bring reusable cloth bags with me to the store, and I plan on getting a couple more in varying sizes to use as produce bags.

2. Biodegradable Bags for Garbage Bins

I know I just said that I bring reusable cloth bags to the store, which I 100% do, but we’ve also still used plastic bags for lining our garbage bins in the bathroom and kitchen. This one has put me in bit of a pickle because I didn’t really know what a good alternative is. I really dislike tossing garbage into an un-lined bin because I think it’s a little gross, but then I realized I can remedy this by purchasing biodegradable garbage bags similar to our compost bags. Duh!

If you’ve any other suggestions, I’m all ears! Leave me a comment 🙂

3. Reusable Razors

I used to have just one single razor with replaceable heads, but somewhere along the lines I started using disposables again. But agh! It’s so unbelievably wasteful. Getting my hands on a reusable handle with replaceable heads is on my to-do list.

This Safety Razor is the one I’d like to get. It’s pricey, no doubt, but the replacement heads are not. Plus, it should last a lifetime!

4. Bamboo Toothbrush

Thanks to a viewer who left a comment on my video where I listed 20 things I no longer own, I was reminded how wasteful my plastic toothbrush is. The funny thing is that I used to use a bamboo toothbrush and I loved it. We carried the brand Brush With Bamboo at the health food store I used to work at but then stopped and I had a hard time finding them.

Luckily online shopping exists, so I’m happy to announce that they’re back in my life!

5. Reusable Cloths

Reusable dish cloths are something that I’ve wanted to use for a long time now to replace disposable sponges, J-cloths, paper towels, and things of the sort.

These 100% bamboo kitchen dish cloths make me SO freaking excited. They can simply be washed in the laundry and reused again and again as part of cleaning, dish washing, or wiping up various messes.

Oh! Lastly, I also got a new eco-friendly, compostable phone case from PelaCase and I’m so happy about it. I got mine in Rose Quartz.

I’d love to know some ways that you reduce waste if this is something up your alley, too. If you have any awesome ideas, suggestions or tips to share, let me know in the comments below!

What tips do you have for reducing waste? Here’s to a less-wasteful 2019 😉

by Meghan Livingstone

Note: this post may contain affiliate links. Learn more here.

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9 Comments

  1. Ursula Melia

    Dear Meghan

    Good for you! I do most of these things already but sadly some vegetables do not come without plastic wrapping (cucumbers, most green salads etc). Reusable razors are not as expensive as you might think. I have one with a bamboo handle and metal head using razor blades and it cost me just under 18 dollars (that is the equivalent of pound sterling, I just looked my old order up). The only thing you want to be a bit careful of is handling the blades. I cut my thumb quite badly when I was in a rush, took 2 weeks to heal – bit it did heal. Otherwise works perfectly).

    I use biodegradable bin bags but hey, they ARE expensive, at least in the UK (just under 64 US dollars for 100. But at least we get our biodegradable bags for food waste free from our council and we can recycle in our garden waste bins. That’s cool and takes a huge amount of waste out of our landfill waste.

    I use bamboo toothbrushes, they are excellent, and bamboo dish cloths (they wash a treat) and have a wooden/metal dish brush with natural bristles that came with two replacement heads. You can wash the heads with the normal wash, so they should sort of last me forever.

    I use solid shampoo (just under 13 US dollars) and have tried two different deodorants, one in a cardboard packaging, the other one in a glass jar. Both of those were also just under 13 US dollars. The shampoo bar will last me two months so that’s not so bad in comparison to shampoo in plastic containers but the deodorant only lasts a month so that is very expensive (in my books) in comparison. The worst aspect, though, of many of these purchases, is that they are not available in local supermarkets or even health food shops. So I have to order them via Amazon, which makes the whole thing a lot less ‘green’. The bamboo stuff all comes all the way from China.

    I am hoping that in the future greener products are available via our local supermarket. This will not mean they haven’t travelled a long distance but at least it will have been a bulk order, which is slightly better.

    But reducing plastic waste is hugely important so I will try and keep up most things. Also because I am not confident about plastic waste recycling.

    I think if everyone does as much as they can, even if it is just one thing, that’s got to help. So good luck with your endeavours! Always lovely to hear from you!!!

    Reply
  2. Ursula Melia

    Dear Meghan
    I just realised I had a bit of a senior moment (55 this April), and quoted those prices in US dollars when you live in Canada. I just looked it up and one US dollar seems to be 1.33 Canadian dollars so those prices are just a bit more than the US dollars I converted them to. Really, really sorry! (as we say here in the UK: ‘you can’t get the staff these days’. Please forgive me!

    Sending best wishes, though!

    Reply
    • Joanne Fortman

      Ursula, I appreciate your US dollar amounts

      Reply
  3. Joanne Fortman

    Hi Megan. Great to hear from you! Love your intentions. I use bamboo tooth brushes, dish scrubber and hair brush & sponges & cooking utensils. Also bamboo & also stainless steel straws. Cloth bags for produce. So much more to do, but little by little. ????????????

    Reply
    • Meghan

      Hi Joanne,

      Awesome! I’m glad so many others are already on board with these sorts of things. And you’re right, little by little! Thanks for sharing xx

      Reply
  4. Candace

    I had labeled 2019 my Year of Less before the year even started. I’m really looking to reduce waste as much as is realistic, and just frankly live simpler.

    I’ve always been a bit of a minimalist at heart, but I started realizing towards the end of last year that I had started to amass things I didn’t even want it like, somehow. I started cleaning out my closet and the dishes I never used because I hated them or they were just a pain in the ass to clean, then made s capsule (ish) wardrobe, and I continue to cull out as time goes on. I’ve even started digitizing my files documents.

    Another focus was on less food waste and ridding my kitchen if as many plastics as possible, and finally making the leap to glass containers. I’ve intended to do it for a few years and haven’t, but you were my motivation (found your YT channel my long ago).

    Here’s to us all finding a way to live now with less waste!

    Reply
    • Meghan

      I know the feeling of realizing “why do I have this?!” Glad you and I both have similar goals this year 🙂

      Reply
  5. Lunelle

    I have only recently become aware of the concept/movement of zero waste and what an eye opener it was and still is. It’s very overhwhelming I must admit when you look around you and realize that most of stuff you use on a daily basis have a huge impact on the environment. I am working on a load of things towards reducing our waste BUT for now the nr 1 priority is to use up what I have and when replacing those items I endeavour to opt for the eco friendly or friendlier option or even go without where possible. If I may ask I really want to rather make my own cleaning once the products that I do have run out.
    There are so many videos on YT in this regard but I really would like the truly tried and tested recipes. Any guidance in this regard?
    Just suggestion regarding bin liners. I made cloth liners for the bins in our bathrooms from old t-shirts. Works well.

    Reply
    • Meghan

      Hey Lunelle (LOVE your name by the way). Thanks for sharing! I love your t-shirt tip. Great idea. About the cleaning products — I use Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds for pretty much anything but if you want some more DIY recipes, check out “Clean Mama’s” website 🙂

      Reply

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HI, I’M MEGHAN.

I’m a Certified Holistic Nutritionist with a passion for simple living, digestive wellness, and all things healthy and natural. I’m here to inspire you to live a life you love living.

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