If you’re looking for ways to reduce waste at home that fits your busy schedule, this is for you.
We understand that many people are eager to help out on various environmental issues, like reducing waste.
However, they simply can’t find the time to do anything as they have their hands full with other life obligations and responsibilities.
So we came up with a solution.
Below are 13 simple things average Jane and Joe can do (with little to no effort) that will effectively reduce waste at home – may it be plastic, energy, food, and others.
And guess what, these simple ideas on reducing waste are not only guaranteed to minimize waste at home but even help rid of unnecessary expenses on your part!
Are you excited? Then let’s get started.
1. Use Zero Waste Personal Care Products
From disposable plastic packaging to single-use plastic containers, your perfumes, makeups, toothbrush, and other personal care products are the primary sources of plastic trash at home.
And as you may already know, only a small portion of plastic waste is actually recycled.
But here’s the good news:
Any busy person can still reduce plastic waste by switching to zero waste personal care products.
Zero waste personal care products are made with sustainable materials, and they have eco-friendly containers and packaging that are either plastic-free or 100% recyclable.
2. Use Low-Waste Home Cleaning Products
Another excellent idea on how you can reduce waste at home is to use low waste cleaning products.
And since we know you’re busy, we already did some research and found some of the best low-waste cleaning products for you.
- Zero Waste Dish Soaps
- Zero Waste Laundry Detergents
- Non-Plastic Sponges
- Plastic-Free Cleaning Brush
- Bamboo Paper Towels
And while you’re here, you can also check out a list of 50+ eco-friendly cleaning products for a greener home cleaning routine.
3. Repurpose Old Clothing
Got boxes of old clothes that you’re not using anymore?
Don’t send them away to the landfills yet!
There are many ways to recycle, upcycle or repurpose your old clothes despite your busy schedules.
You can turn them into a cleaning rag, a pet bed, an accessory, or an instant costume for holidays!
Discover 17 simple yet brilliant ideas on what you can do with old clothing here.
By repurposing old clothes, you can minimize waste at home and help reduce the fashion industry’s environmental impact.
Alternatively, you can also reduce waste by supporting eco-friendly clothing brands.
These companies produce high-quality clothes using eco-friendly fabrics through sustainable and environment-friendly practices.
4. Buy Zero Waste Bathroom Products
Say goodbye to plastic sachets from soaps and shampoos.
Zero waste bathroom products are specifically designed to help reduce single-use plastic waste.
5. Reduce Waste at Home by Saving Food
According to the UN Environment Programme, roughly one-third of the food produced globally for human consumption is wasted every year. (see source below)
Let’s not add to those numbers.
Here are some ways to reduce food waste at home:
- Have a meal plan.
- After picking up food supplies, refrigerate perishables immediately.
- Cook only what you can consume.
- Store and preserve leftover food safely, preferably with eco-friendly food containers.
- Learn recipes for leftover food.
- Give away extra food to your neighbors or the homeless.
6. Practice Efficient Energy Usage at Home
Believe it or not, many households are wasting electricity unknowingly.
And as you already know, wasted electricity is wasted money and resources.
On the bright side, there are many ways you can cut back on unnecessary electric usage at home.
Besides, practicing efficient energy usage at home wouldn’t take much of your time.
Here are some ways to reduce energy waste and save some money from electric bills at home.
- Turn off the lights and other appliances when not used.
- Close the door and windows when AC is on.
- Consider switching to LED light bulbs.
- Keep the fridge properly closed.
- Use air fryers whenever you can.
7. Use Eco-Friendly Baby Products
As parents, we can relate that baby products are among the top creators of waste at homes.
From disposable diapers to damaged toys, you name it.
But did you know that using eco-friendly baby products will help you reduce waste from baby essentials?
And don’t worry.
Eco-friendly baby products are guaranteed safe to use for your little angel.
8. Avoid Unnecessary Paper Waste
Take a quick look at your bin.
How much trash paper do you see, and what are they?
You can reduce waste at home and save tons of trees in one go by switching to paperless billing options.
And don’t stop there.
You can also opt for electronic statements, payments, and digital receipts.
By the way, that monthly magazine subscription you hardly read anyways? Unsubscribe.
9. Avoid Disposable Food Utensils on Parties
Once in a while, we host parties and gatherings at home.
But the next time you do it, don’t serve food using disposable cups, plates, straws, and utensils.
You can rent some if you don’t have the budget to buy proper plates and silverware for a party.
You might not like the idea of washing dishes and spoons after the event, but hey, we only host parties once or twice a year.
Plastic trash can last hundreds of years in landfills, and paper plates and cups are products made from cutting trees in the forests.
And on the topic of renting…
10. Rent, Borrow or Buy Second-Hand Goods
If you need something, consider renting first instead of buying new.
For instance, renting a Halloween costume is much cheaper and practical than buying a new one since you only need it for one day.
Another example will be to rent a tent or sleeping bag if you’re planning to go camping.
Another alternative would be to visit thrift shops and buy second-hand items.
And if you don’t want to spend money on something you only need for a limited time, try borrowing from your relatives and friends.
11. Reduce Waste at Home by Composting
What do you do with organic food scraps and peelings from fruits and veggies?
Did you know that rotting food and organic waste in landfills will release methane, one of the greenhouse gases responsible for global warming?
Here’s a much better alternative:
You can compost the organic kitchen waste, and you can do so easily using an indoor kitchen compost bin.
This way, you reduce the organic waste you send to landfills, and you can have organic fertilizer that you can use for your plants and flowers at home.
So technically speaking, your organic kitchen waste are not wasted.
And since many of us cook food more than twice a day, composting will allow you to reduce so much waste at home.
12. Recycle, Reuse, Repurpose, or Upcycle Household Waste
Whether we like it or not, there will be trash in our homes.
But what we do with them can play a vital role in reducing waste that ends in landfills or incinerators.
So before you toss stuff in your bin, pause and take some time to think of ways to recycle, reuse, repurpose or upcycle them.
13. Get a Reusable Shopping Bag
Instead of relying on single-use plastic bags to carry groceries home, the first entry on your shopping list should be to bring your own reusable shopping bag.
Reusable shopping bags are made with durable and washable materials, so they can be used for months (even years) to come.
Just imagine how many plastic bags you would have avoided using within that time frame!
Moreover, you can think big and not limit yourself to using a reusable shopping bag for groceries alone!
You can get a reusable shopping bag that you can also use when buying clothes, accessories, and other life necessities.
But you must be thinking:
“Isn’t it a hassle to be carrying a reusable shopping bag everywhere?”
Today, many reusable bags are foldable, and you can easily keep them in your purse, car, or pocket.
And besides having a reusable shopping bag, what you buy in stores and how you shop will also dictate how much waste your home creates.
For instance, buying supplies with little or no packaging significantly reduces single-use wrappers and plastic that ends in your bin.
Buying in bulk is also a great way to reduce packaging waste and minimize your carbon footprint from driving your car or commuting to pick up supplies.
Moreover, consciously thinking about the implications of buying things before buying them will help reduce waste from products you don’t really need.
We hope that by this point, we have answered your question:
“How can I reduce waste at home despite my busy schedule?”
And so you won’t feel overwhelmed, pick one or two of the easy ways to reduce waste at home above and put them into action immediately.
Before you know it, reducing waste will come naturally to you, like breathing.
Anyways, we would love to hear from you too.
Which of the tips above would you say is the simplest way anyone can reduce waste at home?
Which one do you like best, and which one are you planning to start right away?