5 Swaps I am Making for a More Sustainable 2020!

I want to start of 2020 right by swapping my first set of sustainable products into my life/routine! I am currently working on reviews for each of these items. Look for those coming up soon!

1. KeepCup – Stop Using Disposable Cups

I saw ads for the KeepCup on Instagram one day and thought what a great idea! I drink coffee almost every day and tea every day. Sometimes I also get soda at fast food restaurants. If I didn’t use any reusable cups that means I would send 365+ disposable cups to either landfill or recycling each year.

While recycling is great, it is better to not use a single-use cup at all. Energy and resources need to be expended to process and recycle that cup at the end of its life, which can contribute to greenhouse gas emissions. This is why I am looking for a product that I can wash and reuse instead.

I do use a refillable cup sometimes but have run into three main problems. First, many places won’t let me use it for drinks because it’s not a standard size and it would be difficult for the business to charge me the right price for the drink. Second, my reusable cup isn’t dishwasher safe, so I don’t use it as often because it’s a hassle to clean all the time. Finally, my cup is plastic so over time the cup can smell like whatever I last drank out of it. Let me tell you, coffee smelling water is gross.

I have already ordered a KeepCup and look forward to trying it out!

2. Eco-Friendly Flats – Replacing a Broken Pair

My current pair of flats was bought from JustFab.com I used to shop there because their items were cheap. As with most cheap items they were often not of the best quality and didn’t last very long. This year I have decided to upgrade my life by purchasing some new environmentally friendly and ethically sourced flats.

Purchasing better quality and long-lasting items is better for the environment because you purchase items less often. Fewer resources must be expended in producing one pair of shoes that lasts three years verses buying three pairs of shoes that only last a year each.

Clothing is one of the most unsustainable industries on the planet. Small conscientious changes in this area will add up to big reductions in waste.

3. No Waste or Low Waste Gift Wrapping

I gave this a shot this past Holiday season. It was surprisingly easy and beautiful! In Japan there is a whole art called Furoshiki that is dedicated to wrapping items in cloth. I used this (zero waste) method to wrap my secret Santa gift this year!

Since the holidays I have gotten some great ideas from family and friends about other beautiful low-waste ideas for wrapping gifts. I am currently away at school and haven’t gotten a chance yet to give my friends from home their gifts. My mom suggested a way of using old toilet paper rolls as wrappers that I am going to try out. It sounds weird and gross, but the end result looks like a very clean and minimalist way of wrapping.

4. Shampoo and Conditioner Bars – TSA friendly

I have always liked liquid shampoo and conditioner, it is easy to apply, and I can buy it in bulk from Costco (which I always thought was more environmentally friendly then buying smaller sizes from a grocery store). However, they still come in thick plastic bottles, which contributes to plastic waste.

Additionally, it has always annoyed me that I can’t bring my shampoo and conditioner when traveling. I don’t really like hotel soaps. They are normally not very good quality and there is never enough conditioner, especially if you are traveling with other people.

I have decided to give Shampoo and Conditioner Bars a try! They take up very little space in my travel kit and come in little to no packaging reducing my plastic waste to zero!

5. #10Free and Glitter Free Nail Polish – Toxic Chemicals

I have been seeing this hashtag #10free pop up around the internet. After a little digging I figured out that some Nail Polish brands are producing nail polishes created without 10 substances that are either considered toxic and have health risks or are made of animal byproducts.  

I will be doing a review soon of Priti NYC nail polish. It is a #10free nail polish brand that is vegan, cruelty free, and gluten free. They currently have a range of 96 different colors.

Priti NYC Nail Polish. Color: Crown of Thorns

I have also decided as part of revamping my nail polish collection that after my current bottle of Essie glitter nail polish is used up that I will no longer purchase nail polishes containing glitter. Most glitter is just tiny colorful pieces of plastic and removing glitter nail polishes is an easy way to remove more plastic from my life.

This product swap is a win-win because it’s better for my health and the environment!

2 thoughts on “5 Swaps I am Making for a More Sustainable 2020!

  1. Have you found good options for ethical/eco-friendly flats? I had a heck of a time when looking this summer and eventually settled on Nisolo, but they aren’t holding up well, which is disappointing 🙁 Just got them resoled to extend their lifespan, but really shouldn’t have to after 6 months of light wear! I previously had Rothy’s which were ok, but my pinky toes eventually poked through the shoe itself!

    1. Hey great question! I am in the process of also testing sustainable flat brands. I also tried Rothys but they weren’t built for my wide feet. It’s great to hear your experience with Nisolo. I’ll let you know how my testing is going!

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