Most of us would love nothing more than to live a sustainable lifestyle – to give ourselves and our loved ones the very cleanest products, to leave a small footprint, and do our part to help our local and global ecosystems thrive. But, most of us are also very busy. We don’t always have time to think about the ways we could be more sustainable. Or we may not have the budget to choose a higher priced, “sustainable” product.
With all of this in mind, we’ve come up with some easy ways to start being more sustainable, eco-conscious, and inspired this Earth Day. A bonus: many of these ideas are free or can save you money!
Try These Everyday Swap Outs
Use washable metal or glass straws instead of disposable plastic straws. Plastic straws can break down into “microplastics” and end up in the ocean, threatening marine life. Luckily, reusable straws are popping up in more and more local shops, and they're also easy to find online.
Use cloth instead of paper towels when possible. We may never be able to get away from paper towels when cleaning the toilet, but cleaning the counters with a cloth is an easy, sustainable switch.
Instead of using plastic bags at checkout, bring your own bags for groceries. Many stores sell affordable reusable bags, and according to the Danish study, the best reusable ones are made from polyester or plastics like polypropylene. Plus – since some cities charge you money to use a paper or plastic bag at the grocery store, bringing your own reusable bag can save you money.
Buy second-hand clothes when possible. And when buying new, try to invest in better quality items that last longer, and support fashion brands that are ethical and environmentally conscious.
Consider investing in reusable products. We love these reusable sandwich bags from our local friends at Marley’s Monsters.
Use rechargeable batteries where possible. As with many swap outs, there is an upfront cost to making the switch to rechargeable batteries, but they are an easy way to be more sustainable and save some money in the long run.
Try to borrow books from the library before purchasing them directly. If you love reading as much as we do, this is a money-saving idea!
Support Organizations Working to Improve the Planet
We all have personal and professional talents that would be appreciated by groups working for clean water, land and forest preservation, school gardens, or any number of environmental issues. Giving your time can be invaluable to nonprofit organizations on tight budgets.
Consider volunteering at an event, joining a board, or organizing a fundraiser for your favorite nonprofit. Some of our partners include: Women's Voices for the Earth, Trees for the Future, and MADE SAFE, but you likely have many in your own community.
Dig Into a Book or Documentary
Taking the time to read, watch, or listen to experts talk about climate change can be one of the most powerful ways to stay informed on what is happening to our planet – as well as inspire us to stay engaged in a sustainable lifestyle. This idea is also inexpensive or free thanks to public libraries and online streaming services!
Our founder and CEO Wendy Strgar says that the movie Before the Flood, from National Geographic and Leonardo DiCaprio, is a must-see. It was hugely influential on her perspective on climate change, which in turn led our business to become even more environmentally conscious than ever before.
Those of us at Good Clean Love also say that films like Planet of the Humans and The Story of Stuff, as well as books like The Conscious Closet (Elizabeth Kline), The Sixth Extinction (Elizabeth Kolbert), and Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (Barbara Kingsolver) have sparked a fire in us to take climate change more seriously.
Find a topic that resonates with the things you’re passionate about – health, fashion, education, history. There are books for everyone’s interests that tie to the planet. Are you in a book club? Even better to share with friends!
What We're Doing to Take Care of the Planet
At Good Clean Love, social responsibility and environmental stewardship are at the forefront of our business practices.
- We are the only feminine hygiene and intimacy product company using green plastics made of recyclable sugar cane.
- We won the PETA Compassionate Company Award for our work in helping change the FDA animal testing requirements for personal lubricants.
- We are a registered B-corporation, meaning we align our business practices with people and our planet.
We also made the decision in 2018 to make Almost Naked Organic Personal Lubricant the world’s first certified carbon-neutral personal lubricant.
For every bottle of you purchase, we donate to a carbon offset project that reduces greenhouse gases by an amount equivalent to that bottle’s carbon footprint. With your help, we have saved over 1,800 metric tons of carbon to date!
You Really Can Make a Difference
We truly believe most of us desire to help our Earth, but many times we can feel like no matter what we do it wouldn’t really make a difference. However, it’s important to remember that our individual actions can be widely inspiring to others around us. We cannot discount the value of positivity and the influence we have on those around us.
Our individual actions when taken collectively give real benefits. With each decision that we make in the marketplace as consumers, we send very real messages to retailers and the larger industry. Even when we make a conscious decision not to buy something or to shop at our local farmer’s market, that is a direct economic signal we’re sending.
So it is not just about the feel-good or inspiring messages we’re sending to others, (which are absolutely critical), but we can also send a very real economic message through our decisions in the marketplace.