There is a bit of a learning curve to Sustainable Living. It can be hard to make swaps, as we don't always know what we are looking for. Sometimes they don't work, but then sometimes we find something that changes our lives.
When we think about the swaps we've yet to make or the ones that haven't worked, you can almost feel like a failure, but you aren't. We aren't. The very fact that we're even thinking about it is wonderful. In those moments where I think, I should be doing better, I should be doing this or that, I find it helps to think about what has worked well, and why and compare it with what hasn't worked well. So here we are!
Worked Well -
Refillable Cleaning Products - These are easy to buy, they reduce waste, and they are they contain fewer chemicals/are non-toxic so they are better for our households, waterways, and just generally better for the environment. They are often cheaper and last longer.
Reusable washing-up cloths - These are great and so simple. Use them, stick them in the wash and use them again. Simple!
Silicone pouches and beeswax wraps - an alternative to cling film, sandwich bags, and tinfoil, I am a big fan, particularly of the silicone pouches.
Milk deliveries - A couple of years ago, we started getting our milk delivered in glass bottles, and this has reduced our plastic considerably.
Cordless hoover - It uses less energy, as it has a rechargeable battery, so it's not always plugged in when I use it. It's smaller too!
Period Pants and CSP - And a cup! These items are some of my favorite swaps. They save so much money, save loads of plastic, and are better for our bodies. I love not having to buy disposable products.
Bamboo/Wooden toothbrushes - A great alternative to a plastic toothbrush! An easy swap to make.
Soap bars - For both washing hands, and in the shower, I love a soap bar! I sued to get freaked out by them, but now the plastic of liquid soap bothers me more! They take up less room in the shower caddy too!
Safety razor - Another favorite! Much less waste, they give better a shave and I rarely cut myself (Although when I do, I really do!) They look cool as well.
Reusable face wipes - Love these! Another super easy swap and I can't understand why everyone doesn't make it!
Klean Kanteens - Swapping from plastic bottles is a great choice, and I will always suggest a Klean Kanteen to anyone looking for a good quality bottle.
Dryer Balls - Instead of dryer sheets, these dryer balls are much better. Only buy them once, instead of buying them regularly, and they don't send waste to a landfill!
I'm sure there is more, these are just the top swaps that come to mind.
Hasn't Worked Well -
Shampoo bar - I've tried a couple, and one didn't work at all, one was good but not for long-term use. I have a lot of hair, it's very long and very thick, and having the kids has taken a lot of the goodness out of it. My scalp has also changed, and I find making changes to my hair products can really aggravate it. I use Body Shop shampoo at the moment, but I am interested in finding a shampoo bar that works, or a refillable option.
Reusable baby wipes - I have really wanted these to work, and I don't know what I am doing wrong but the wipes seem to go off quite quickly. I open the box and they smell, sometimes awful. It's not all of the time, but I feel then it should be. I keep thinking of ways I can use them, perhaps if we had a kitchen box for wiping hands, but so far it's not happened.
Toothpaste - I've not tried loads, but what I have tried I've just not stuck with. I've tried a couple of options in a jar, but I find it such a faff. There are still options for me to try though, so I'm not giving up!
Laundry Sheets - I mean as an alternative to washing powder. I tried a pack once, and I didn't feel like they did a good job. I've stuck, for now, to Aldi washing powder. Yes, it does have chemicals in it, but it comes in a cardboard box with no plastic at least - not even a scoop or a handle.
I have a long list of things I still want to try, and there will always be changes and improvements. It's all about finding that one thing that makes you never look back!