Living Sustainably: A Series

Living a sustainable lifestyle might seem overwhelming at first; there are so many pieces to consider in each aspect of life. The good news is that you can transition into a sustainable lifestyle one step at a time, and right now is the perfect time to do it. We will be breaking down living sustainably into a few different posts and linking them to this one as they release (so make sure to bookmark or share this page so you can find it later). Our series will be full of helpful tips and tricks, as well as DIY projects to keep you busy this summer.

We will be starting off the series with something extremely fundamental given the current world situation: sustainable cleaning solutions.

What Makes Cleaning Products Unsustainable?

Items such as wet wipes, aerosols, and sprays are all packaged in plastic and usually contain harmful chemicals to you and the environment. For example, many clothing detergents contain phosphates which harm our waterways by speeding up eutrophication and suffocating the water (and aquatic life) below. 

Luckily, there are many alternatives to choose from that are much better for you, your family, and the environment. These alternatives could be purchased or made with a few simple steps. It may be more time consuming, but knowing that you are doing your part to help the environment and keep yourself safe is worth it. 

Everyday Items to Phase Out

When it comes to making the switch to sustainable products, you want to use the “phasing out” method. Instead of tossing everything you want to replace in the trash half-full, replace things as they run out. Following these steps to get started:

Steps to phase out unsustainable cleaning products.

To help you with Step 2, here is a list of our favourite projects and brands.

Sustainable Brands:

ECOS has a terrific all-purpose cleaner with refill options available for future purchases. They are also 100% carbon neutral, using only plant-based ingredients, and boast a variety of scents and products, as well as hypoallergenic products.

Better Life is another plant-powered company that uses biodegradable ingredients. They even have biodegradable surface wipes that are free from harsh chemicals. Their diverse product line covers every room of the house.

For something more local, try Norwex (this one is a personal favourite). This company’s microfibre cloths remove 99% of surface bacteria, and all of their products help reduce waste. From laundry detergent to window cleaners to lint removers, this brand is doing everything right.

DIY Cleaners:

For most DIY cleaning projects, all you need is:

  1. Baking Soda
  2. White Vinegar
  3. Hydrogen Peroxide
  4. Essential Oils
  5. Castile Soap

These natural cleaners and disinfectors can tackle virtually any household mess. You will also need a scrub brush, sponge, water, and a bucket or two. By combining these ingredients in different ways, you can skip the shopping trips and continue to keep your home clean. You can also reuse certain ingredients and containers in different ways – an added waste-reducing benefit. This article was so thorough we think they covered it all: you will find mixing proportions for all-purpose cleaners, air fresheners, and even laundry detergent.

Next up

Coming up, we will be tackling sustainable living room by room. We will look at bedroom solutions, kitchen pieces, and zero-waste bathrooms. After that, we will tackle sustainable shopping for all of your needs. And to top it off, we will be finishing off the series with fun activities to jump-start your sustainability journey.

Here is our inventory list:

Cleaning products inventory template

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