- Turn off the water while you soap yourself in the shower, remove your makeup, brush your teeth, or shave.
- Give preference to showering over taking a bath.
- Buy a dishwasher: you will save not only water but also the skin on your hands and your dishes, especially stemware and greasy cooking pans and pots. It will take far less effort to wash them with a dishwasher.
- Drink tap water if it is of an appropriate quality; otherwise, install a good water filter. The bottled water that we buy in the shop cannot be stored forever, and we rarely use it to the last drop.
- Try not to wash a pair of sweaters or dresses in a washing machine that has the capacity to wash 7 to 10 kg of laundry. If you urgently need to wash these clothes, try to do it the old-fashioned way – with your own hands.
- If you live outside the city or have a country house, then use water which is not suitable for drinking to water the plants. They will be really grateful to you.
- Regularly inspect all bathroom and lavatory equipment as well as external pipes for leaks, and try to always close all faucets tightly.
- Make sure that all electrical appliances which you are not using right now are unplugged.
- Use only energy-saving light bulbs and home appliances, the ones that consume the least volume of electricity (this is usually determined by the energy consuming classification of the appliance).
- When choosing an apartment or a house, pay attention to the size of the windows: the larger they are, the longer you will be able to enjoy daylight hours.
- Design the interior of your apartment so that nothing prevents the penetration of natural light into every corner of each room. In case the layout of the apartment leaves much to be desired, try to paint the walls, ceiling, and floor with light colors. This will visually illuminate the rooms and make them seem larger, and will also relieve you of the necessity to look for the light switch every time you enter the apartment.
- If you are using an electric stove, make sure that the size of the hotplate corresponds with the size of the bottom of your cooking pans and pots. This way you won't waste any electricity or natural gas.
- Use candles during the twilight and evening hours. This will not only save you money but will also create a romantic atmosphere.
- Try not to install an air conditioner if the climatic conditions are favorable. Use indoor plants instead, they will cope with the task of refreshing and cleaning the air brilliantly. Or just open the windows more often to let the fresh air inside.
- Consider the possibility of installing sun batteries.
- Try not to turn on the heat unless absolutely necessary.
- Be smart about adjusting the temperature of the radiators in the winter period: even the slightest decrease (by one degree) of temperature could have a significantly positive impact on the size of your heating bills.
- Open the windows only when the radiators are turned off. You wouldn't want to heat the streets, right?
- If you are not living in a multi-storied urban apartment but in a detached house, then it would be wise to consider installing a good-old fireplace or a stove. Economy-wise, it may be a great solution for keeping the house warm.
- Take care about thermal insulation: install double window frames and seal all the cracks.
- Always sort out the trash before throwing it into the trash container. Plastic, clear and colored glass, paper, metal, and food waste shouldn't be placed in one container.
- If possible, try not to increase the overall volume of trash. Buy fruits and vegetables in the marketplace, where they are not packed into kilometers of polyethylene film. Always go shopping with your own bag made of cloth or a wicker basket. Get a reusable bottle for drinking water. Try not to buy a lot of unnecessary trinkets which will be thrown away sooner or later. Try to avoid spontaneous shopping: you will come away with little to show for all the wasted money, just useless things and spoiled products. Try to save the paper from your home or office printer. Always think about whether the thing you are about to throw away could have a second life.
Cosmetics and household detergents
- It goes without saying that all beauty products which are made from natural ingredients are less harmful to the body than synthetic substances. The price of natural products can be surprisingly low, despite the fact that they have those “Bio” and “Eco” stickers. However, you should be careful and always check whether the given product really falls into this category or whether tricky marketing is underway, and nothing more.
- Conduct a review of all the shelves where you keep household detergents and try to replace at least a couple of bottles with the ones that are less harmful to the environment. Just imagine what cleaning foam for a stove can do to living plants if it can remove a thick layer of crusty fat in less than a minute!
When decorating your apartment, try to give preference to decorative and finishing materials with natural ingredients whenever possible. It would be not only eco-friendly but also would make your life more comfortable, because a wooden house “breathes” much better than its concrete counterpart. This tip is especially relevant for those who suffer from various allergies. And again, don't forget about live indoor plants!
Turn over the items in your wardrobe regularly. Clothing that is no longer suitable to wear, but which you still don't want to throw away, should go into a basket designated for collecting textiles. Mend the clothes that require mending. Give the things that you haven't worn for more than a year (and don't plan to wear anymore) to your friends or organize a cooperative sale with them. When buying new clothing, look for the slow fashion brands which are part of the eco-friendly style of dressing. By the way, you get greater possibilities of buying truly unique clothing in such stores.
Scientists claim that it takes 21 days to develop any new useful habit. So, how many days are left to the first day of your new life?
Title photo: Nina Johnson