When you’re trying to help the planet, it might seem like it’s an expensive lifestyle. Surprisingly, though, there’s actually so many things that you can do that will actually save you money instead! From the kitchen to general environmentally tweaks you can make in your home, there are plenty of eco-friendly ways you can start saving money today!
Start in the Kitchen
One of the best things you can do is to invest in reusable products. When you spend money on reusable products, you are investing in something that will last years. Whereas, when you buy single use products, sure you spend less in the moment but in the long run, you waste a lot. Some reusable items that you should definitely invest in are: water bottle, reusable bags and stasher bags.Likewise, you should also look into using glass containers. Glass containers will last a lot longer than plastic containers plus they are better for the environment which will save you money. They can be recycled forever whereas plastic containers can’t.
Cooking from homeis such a great way to save money. Want to help the environment with it? Meal prepping will save you even more money plus help reduce your food waste. When you meal prep, you know exactly what foods you need to make each dish. This prevents you from impulse buying food that ends up rotting away without you realizing it.
Shop in bulk
When you buy items in bulk, you spend less money in the long run. Plus, you reduce the amount of packaging you bring home. One large bag 10 lb bag of rice is less packaging than 10 small 1 lb bags of rice.You might also look to buying tea in bulk vs individually packed tea bags. Teabags might seem like a small thing to think about but if you’re drinking one cup of tea a day, that’s 365 tea bags sent straight to the landfill. Instead, buy tea leaves which are cheaper to buy in bulk and can be composted so they leave behind no waste.
Eco-Friendly Bathroom Tips
It might be an adjustment, but have you heard of a shower bucket? A shower bucket is basically a bucket that you keep in your shower to catch excess water. So much water is wasted in the shower so catch the excess and use it around your home to water plants or clean the floors.Something else that might seem different, but worth it, is investing in a bidet. A bidet will save you so much toilet paper down the line. Not only is it great for your wallet but it also cleans way better than using just toilet paper.Lastly, think about using an epilator instead of a razor. Disposable razors can only be used once before they should be replaced. Epilators can be used forever since they just need to be charged
Soap + Shampoo/Conditioner
Making your own soap is surprisingly easy! Mix 1 part water and 1 part castile soap from Dr. Bronner’s in a pump bottle. It’ll make a lot more soap for a lot less compared to buying it from brand name stores. Plus, there’s no plastic bottle to throw out after each use!Also, instead of throwing out shampoo and conditioner bottles, get shampoo and conditioner bars. They last much longer than your standard shampoo or conditioner bottle. And since they simply dissolve when they’re used up, they create with no waste at all.
15 Eco-Friendly Tips For Your Home That Will Save You Money
All Around the Home
Have you ever thought about how the junk mail coming to your home impacts the environment? It’s so useless! It comes into the home and goes straight into the recycling bin (I hope). Ask your delivery person to stop giving it to you by putting a note on your mailbox saying you no longer want junk mail. This eco-friendly tip will let the delivery people know not to give you any.
Saving on Electricity
Don’t forget to unplug unused appliances! Did you know that appliances that are plugged in use energy even if they are turned off? Save that money and help the environment by unplugging anything not in use. Things like tea kettle, fans and laptop chargers don’t need to be plugged in if they aren’t being used.You should also use a power strip when possible. It might seem annoying to have to unplug a bunch of outlets every day. Instead, use a power strip that you can turn off so the power doesn’t come through.
Saving Money on Laundry
Not only are there special tricks to saving time when doing laundry, but you can save money, too! Start by using dryer balls with your laundry. Dryer balls are put into the dryer help dry your clothes faster. Since your dryer isn’t running as long, it’ll reduce your electricity bill. Plus, this will reduce your need to but single use, disposable dryer sheets. Instead, you can add some drops of essential oil to the ball if you want to add some scent to your clothes.Also, don’t forget about hang drying. Instead of using a ton of energy to dry your clothes in the dryer, try to hang dry them when you have time. In the summer, they dry really quickly if you hang them outside. The rest of the year, invest in a sturdy drying rack.This eco-friendly, money saving tips might seem basic, but they can truly go a long way! They’re easy to do and you can implement most of them today and save money within a month. Your wallet and the planet will thank you.
About the author: Youmna Rab is the author and blogger at Sustainably-Yours.com. She has a passion for helping the environment and living sustainably. She loves teaching her friends, family and readers how they can help the environment too. When she’s not blogging, you can find her curled up on a couch reading. Find her on Pinterest and Instagram.
City living can be expensive and then factoring in entertainment can make your paycheck disappear. Thankfully, the Windy City has a bounty of regular free or cheap activities to keep Chicagoans occupied, if you know where and when to look. Let’s check out the best activities in Chicago that won’t break the bank.
Saving money is a difficult prospect, even in the most stable of times. During the pandemic – or any time of social unrest – saving money and thinking about the future can seem irrelevant or hopeless. Focusing on the future, however, can be a huge boost to your mental health – not to mention your future financial health – by helping you fixate on a longterm goal.
The dreaded rush to get the kids prepped for back-to-school time is upon us. New clothes, new backpacks, new pencils – new, new, new. It all costs money and you might end up in an argument or two before the end of it.
Serious question – is wine an acceptable addition to a back-to-school list (for me, I mean)?
Fortunately, with a little preparation and planning, you can get everything your kids need, some of the things they want, and still have cash left in your wallet. And maybe a little sanity left in your mind!
Right now in our homes, we’re all stressed; the kids, the spouse, our parents. It’s scary and uncertain and there’s a pall of tension over everything, and even mundane tasks like going to the grocery store feel like suiting up for dangerous missions.
Between taking care of the kids, working from home and trying to keep things organized, going to the grocery store was not high on my list of wants, but having food is definitely high on our list of needs. A friend of mine suggested I try Postmates, and they gave me the promo code FOODMATES, which gives $100 off of delivery fees, so I decided it was worth a go. That said, please note this is a sponsored post, but it in no way reflects my view points or opinion.
I had heard of Postmates when I lived in Chicago, as it was a popular courier service, but they’ve branched out and now deliver just about anything, anywhere. This includes food from local restaurants, groceries, medicine, etc so we used them to get our weekly grocery order delivered.
The app is incredibly simple to use and the delivery was fast, no-contact and painless. I didn’t have to fight crowds, wear PPE, or wander around a grocery store – our weekly meal plan was completed with a few clicks of an app.
Plus, by ordering through Postmates, there was no chance I was going to impulse buy anything; I got exactly what I needed and didn’t have to leave the house.
It’s not guided meditation or a 5-mile run, but anything to prevent some stress right now is welcome. Having our groceries delivered by Postmates freed up a huge amount of time in my day, and by using the promo code FOODMATES, I didn’t even have to pay for delivery (though we tipped of course).
Do yourself a favor and give them a try and see how much less stressful your life can be when things you need are brought to you.
While the world is staying safe and keeping our distance, there are still those of us who must go out and work, shop and interact at least in some ways with the outside world. Though we’re all counting the days to when we can get out and mingle again, for right now our trips to the grocery store need to be quick, efficient and frugal.
Grocery Shopping Tips For Quarantine
These tips are designed to help us all make our quarantine grocery shopping healthy, safe and efficient, but they’re useful for when all of this ends as well. Wrangling your grocery excursions each week can save you thousands of dollars over the year and tremendous amounts of waste, and might even improve your health.
Make a meal plan before your grocery list
Everyone knows that you shouldn’t go shopping hungry or thirsty because it increases your chances of impulse buying. Did you know it’s just as detrimental to not have a plan in place for all your groceries?
A good meal plan flows into each day; buying a value pack of ground beef can make burgers one day and the leftovers can be used for chili the next. Cooking a pork roast for dinner on Sunday is perfect to make pulled pork on Monday or Tuesday. Planning meals like this saves money and prevents waste, and it allows you to use fillers like beans or rice to make your meals stretch farther.
Avoid Instacart unless you absolutely cannot
Though it seems like getting your groceries delivered is a great way to save time and minimize risk, ultimately someone else is still out there shopping, meaning even though you’re not exposed, someone else is. Additionally, this person is looking at your list and touching things, putting them back and spending more time in the store than you would because you know where to find your routine purchases.
Services like this also mark up the cost of each individual item and charge you a fee. Combined you might be looking at paying over 20% more than if you had shopped yourself.
For high-risk people, these types of services are likely necessities, but many grocery stores offer special hours for high-risk, elderly and emergency services customers. These are low traffic times with extra precautions taken, so if you can, use these hours to your advantage.
Try expanding meatless Mondays
Meat is usually the most expensive part of a meal and with supply chains becoming hindered, it’s increasingly scarce, limited and costly. Meatless Monday is a popular concept that helps people reduce their carbon footprint, reduce meat intake and increase their vegetable intake for better health.
Beans are a great substitute for meat as they provide proteins and cost dramatically less. Dried beans last a considerable amount of time when properly stored and they’re not difficult to cook at all. When coupled with rice, most beans provide a complete essential protein profile and again, both are pantry staples that last for years.
If you want an idea of how much meat to buy for your family and how much each serving costs, there are calculators online that help with that. Applications like these can show you just how much you spend each week on meat, and how much each serving costs, and you can compare different proteins against each other for cost-effectiveness as well.
Batch cook and streamline
With quarantine days bleeding into each other, it’s best to automate as many healthy practices as possible. Your brain likes to make habits out of the mundane, but different experiences feel more special when we make certain parts of our days automatic.
To this end, making big batches of easy breakfasts and lunches is a great way to eat healthy with little thought and to save money. A big container of tuna salad or a breakfast casserole are both extremely cheap, can feed a family for days and can be tailored to be delicious and healthy. This also makes it so that your dinners or weekend meals are more special, because they differ so dramatically from your daily meals. Canned tuna also keeps for a long time, making it an ideal purchase during quarantine when you want to maximize your shopping trips.
Safety and efficiency
Going to the store should be as quick and efficient as possible. Plan a grocery list based on what you pass by as you flow through the store. Produce and meat are usually on the outside, with pantry staples in the middle of the store.
Take a list to ensure you only need to go past each area once, and don’t waste time browsing. Getting in and out as quickly as possible is your top priority, as is maintaining distance. Going as early as possible is another great idea to minimize interaction with other people and maximize how quickly you can get through the store.
Redefine your overall budget
Your grocery budget should be robust enough to feed your family well, but not bloated and including things you really don’t need. Reconsidering your entire budget is a great step during these quarantine times because money is probably becoming more tight, but even if it’s not, there’s never been a better time to step back and evaluate where your money is going and how it’s working for you.
Take the time to sit with a budget calculator and plug in the data to determine how much you should be spending on groceries versus how much you are, and find ways to make those numbers more closely match up.
Grocery shopping has changed dramatically in a few months, and what was simply another chore has turned into something that begs deeper consideration. You can, however, make it a positive, efficient and money-saving experience with just a little bit of planning, budgeting and forethought.