We've partnered with
VEOCEL™ to help parents find smart ways to help their family live sustainably every single day.
To really commit to an eco-friendly lifestyle, you have to make it sustainable in both senses of the word. It not only needs to protect natural resources but also be something you can sustain for weeks, months, and years to come — not just the next few days.
The key to achieving this kind of sustainability is making small changes that add up over time, rather than sweeping trends you won't be able to maintain in the long run. Start with these five tweaks to your family's daily routine.
Shop Secondhand as Much as Possible
Kids grow so quickly that investing a bunch of money into the toy of the moment or a cute outfit that will only fit for the next few weeks really doesn't make sense. Plus, constantly buying new clothes creates a lot of waste. To reduce your family's carbon footprint, shop for kids' essentials secondhand. You can find gently used clothes, toys, books, and more at thrift shops, garage sales, or secondhand stores. The fact that you'll save a little extra money is an added bonus.
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Look For Compostable Versions of Daily Essentials
Image Source: Coterie
Going completely without single-use products like paper towels, baby wipes, and diapers probably isn't feasible for most parents — after all, kids make a lot of messes. Instead, consider switching to single-use essentials that are biodegradable, compostable, and efficient, like
Coterie's The Water Wipe. Made from environmentally responsible VEOCEL™ branded lyocell fibers, these wipes offer consistent quality with low environmental impact. They also fully decompose in just five weeks, rather than the years it takes many plastic-based wipes.
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Find New Uses For Food Scraps
It's easy to lose track of those veggies wilting in the produce drawer when you're juggling a million other parenting responsibilities, but reducing food waste is another great way to minimize your impact on the environment. Look for creative ways to use every bit of the produce in your fridge, like throwing leftover veggies in jarred pasta sauce for a quick lunch or blitzing wilted herbs in the food processor for a homemade green goddess dressing. You can even make use of food scraps that you might otherwise throw away. Try simmering apple cores in water for a homemade apple drink, or roast sweet potato and carrot peels with a little olive oil and salt for a quick veggie-peel chip.
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Reduce Energy Use in Your Laundry Routine
Kids come with a lot of laundry — think muddy clothes, soiled sheets, endless burp cloths — which also means an increase in the amount of energy your household uses. Laundry might be unavoidable, but there are a few things you can do to make it more environmentally friendly. Wait until you have a full load before starting the machine, and wash using cold water whenever possible. Line drying your clothes will also help you save energy — and lower your electric bill.
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Take Up Gardening as a Family Hobby
Living a more eco-conscious life isn't all about chores — you can make it fun for the whole family by taking up a new hobby like gardening. Test out your green thumb by growing a few herbs, fruits, and vegetables — if you don't have a backyard, you can even grow a few herbs in a window planter. Ask kids for their input on what they'd most like to plant, then get them involved in your watering routine. It's a great way to not only teach them about where their food comes from but also grow some of your produce as locally as possible.
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