Hi there! Today we’re talking about all things sustainability and all things Public Goods (but more on that in a minute).
At this stage in the game, I think we’re all pretty aware that our choices matter and have an impact. But with so much info, brands, and products out there- it can be kind of confusing knowing where to start in making more sustainable choices, right?
Today I’m giving you some starter tips for making more sustainable choices in your life. Now, I’ve been vegan for many years (my top tip for helping the planet), but I’m also pretty new to understanding what to look for in packaging and how to opt for more earth-friendly goods, as I mentioned in the YouTube video.
I think living more sustainably is a process – it’s not about being perfect. Instead, it’s more about gaining awareness first and then making better choices based on that awareness.
So here are 5 tips for how to live more sustainably. 🙂
5 Tips For Living More Sustainably
Seriously. Adopting a fully plant-based diet can have a massive impact on air pollution by saving carbon dioxide emissions. It’s said that the world would see a 70% decrease (70%!!!!) in CO-2 food-related emissions if current meat-eaters would go vegan. This is due to the amount of air pollution that factory farms create. The fewer people buy and eat meat- the less factory farming there would be.
We’re always voting on the type of world we want to live in with our dollars. I’m not even skimming the surface on this topic though- there is so much to unpack here- so if you want to dive in further, Cowspiracy is a great place to start. You can watch it here.
Pretty freaking powerful that you can immediately reduce your impact on the planet by changing what you’re eating!
Opt for Recyclable Packing
The first thing to know is that not all plastic is created equal. And that can get kind of confusing. Every container comes with a resin identification code which tells you the grade of plastic that you are dealing with and how well it can be recycled. I found this little chart to be helpful via The Huffington Post:
1’s & 2’s are yes’s- they can be recycled, 4’s & 5’s are maybes, depending on where you’re at (recycling differs in different areas). 3’s, 6’s and 7’s are no’s and can be found on things like plastic wrap, cooking oil, vinyl, and styrofoam products.
When possible – check out the number on the package you’re looking to buy and opt for the recyclable containers.
Use Refillable Containers
Ever get a skincare product in a glass container and think, wow this is a waste when throwing it away? SAME! (This is also the reason I save all glass jars from food containers too.) To decrease the amount of waste, think about opting for reusable containers.
Public Goods (more on their sustainable finds below) is a great example of a company offering reusable containers. So you get the conditioner bottle once, and then anytime you need a refill, you get their biodegradable conditioner refill package rather than another plastic bottle.
You also don’t need to buy a whole new container if you already have some options at home! I’m constantly reusing glass jars and dispensers from products I bought and repurposing them for something else. Case in point: I currently have a glass Moon Juice Collagen Protect container filled to the brim with coconut oil for post-shower moisturizing. (The small one-not the big- lol that would be a LOT of coconut oil.)
Seek Out Better Packaging
Another tip about packaging, yes, but I really wanted to mention this because there are companies out there who are really looking to do things differently. And, since we vote on what we want more of with our dollar, it makes sense to think about it.
Public Goods is using sugar cane to make their plastic bottle products- which means the bottle will be biodegradable rather than taking up space in a landfill. And more and more companies are popping up who do this as well. Another company I really love is Love Hair who also uses biodegradable sugarcane to make their plastic bottles. (The shampoo and conditioner are so good! I’m obsessed.)
Invest in Reusable Staples
This is something I’ve gotten into recently and have been obsessed with. From coffee cups, to produce bags, to plastic cutlery- it’s all kinda wasteful when we think about it. I mean, even just talking about the grocery store- it’s kind of crazy how many single-use plastic bags you can use in just one trip. If you’re getting celery, apples, kale, bananas- that’s like 4 single-use bags right there!
Making mini micro-investments up front to get some reusable bags that you can use at the grocery store or farmers’ market over and over again is definitely something that has an impact. (And I have some major favorites to share with you too!) You can do this with a coffee cup, straws, cutlery- it all works!
So now that we talked tips, let’s dive into the Public Goods haul. They reached out and asked if I’d like to try some products and their service, and when I researched what they’re doing and their mission- I jumped at the chance.
Also- side note- this post isn’t sponsored, by they did graciously gift me with the items below and a membership. All opinions are my own- of course.
How Public Goods Works
Public Goods is a membership site that costs $79 a year to join. So what are you getting for that membership? Access to their crazy affordable prices on their environmentally-friendly, high-quality, and aesthetically cute kitchen, bath, and pantry items. I tried of few of these things and was pretty blown away:
Ok to be real – I don’t really use deodorant much. (Insert scared emoji face here.) I don’t know- I just never really got into it. It always kind of freaked me out knowing that there are lymph nodes are so close to the armpit, especially after reading what aluminum has been linked to. So I decided it was a no on the deodorant.
That was until I tried clean deodorant. This spray from Public Goods is clean and free of harsh chemicals, synthetics, fragrances, and parabens. I also love that it’s a spray. It just seems easier spraying than rolling, you know?
Aloe Vera Gel (currently not available)
Considering that I once saw a mini-sized aloe vera gel in a hotel mini bar retailing for $45, $6 for a full-sized aloe vera gel seems really freaking reasonable! I love having this on hand for bug bites and (hopefully not) any sort of sunburns. I’ve also been using this as a light moisturizer after the shower- but I found that I still like my coconut oil better. My next project with aloe is to make a face mask with it. I’ll report back on Instagram.
Another price I was blown away with- $5.50 for this bar! I’ve been interested in trying a shampoo bar for a while now, and have been stalking one on a site that I order clean beauty and skincare at. That bar was like $26. Such a big difference and the ingredients in this are clean and beautiful!
So I’ve been experimenting with this shampoo bar for a week now and it definitely takes a minute to get used to if you use liquid shampoo. I found my hair strands are a little dryer than with liquid shampoo, but I then apply some hair oil and it evens things out. I love the fact that instead of a bottle, you just have a recyclable paper container. But it def takes some getting used to vs liquid shampoo.
This body wash smells INSANE! It’s so good. It comes in a sugarcane biodegradable bottle and looks very minimal chic on your shower shelf. And the cool thing about this very inexpensive body wash is that you can keep the bottle and just buy the body wash refill when you’re done.
Remember those old plastic loofas that were bright purple and got really weird after a few weeks in the shower? Well- they are made of plastic. For a biodegradable (and honestly- way more aesthetic) swap- this sea sponge is it! It’s also amazing when it’s dry for a light dry brush.
I’m a straw lover in two things – celery juice and smoothies. Oh, also iced coffee if I’m doing the caffeine thing (but make it a mushroom latte please). These bamboo straws are super unique and they’re made from – you guessed it – bamboo. They come in a cute little pouch so you can easily have them on the go.
These are one of the handiest things from this haul. First, they are so freaking cute- the neutral color! Second, they work perfectly to replace those single-use plastic baggies at the grocery store. Use these for apples, mangoes, celery, lettuce, and then when they get dirty- just wash them. Easy peasy.
A few other things I’m going to pick up from Public Goods:
These will be perfect for bulk bin items- brown rice, buckwheat groats, pumpkin seeds. And no fall-through!
Because it will be perfect for farmers market run. Definitely going to get a few of these.
These I’ve just been crushing on because they are so beautiful. Just picture a Bubble Gum Smoothie sitting in one of these babies.
But not for liquor on the rocks, lol. For iced coffees and iced dandelion lattes.
Watch the Public Goods haul here:
So there you have it – all the sustainable swaps and Public Goods finds! I would love to know if you have any sustainable tips too. If you do, be sure to share with us on the YouTube video.
And- if you check out Public Goods – use code LAURENVACULAPGA to get 15% off your first order. You can shop here: https://link.publicgoods.com/Lauren-Vacula
-> My favorite clean beauty finds
-> How to Make a Healthy Whole Food Plant-Based Pina Colada
*Items in this post were gifted by Public Goods. All opinions are my own.
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