How to be Sustainable: 8 Simple Habits to Start Today
Sustainability and how to be sustainable is something that we like to keep front of mind at TANAKA. No one person can do everything, nor would it solve the climate crisis even if they did, but we believe that it's important for all of us to try to do as much good in the world as we're capable of.
In this post we're going to walk you through 8 habits that will help you learn how to be sustainable.
How to be Sustainable
1. Ditch the plastic
Whether you start bringing reusable water bottles or coffee cups on the go, use beeswax wraps to replace your cling film, or switch to plastic free beauty products, the more we can ease our reliance on plastic the better. This is a huge reason that TANAKA soaps is a fully zero-waste and vegan natural bar soap company, and all soaps come wrapped in biodegradable paper.
2. Eat fewer animal products
Animal agriculture is one of the largest producers of CO2 on the planet, so the less we consume, the better. We don't recommend transitioning to a full vegan lifestyle without first consulting a doctor or nutritionist, but reducing our intake of meat and dairy even little by little can make a huge impact. Start with something like meatless Mondays or vegetarian weekdays, and see how it goes! This is one of the most effective ways to learn how to be sustainable.
3. Shop second hand
Fast fashion is a huge contributor to the climate crisis. While the most sustainable option is to wear the clothes you already own, the next best thing would be to shop for clothes that have already been produced and thus are not adding to carbon emissions. That being said, do try to only shop for what you need! The increased popularity of second hand shops in recent years has made the prices increase in many areas, pricing out people who used to once rely on second-hand to get their wardrobes.
4. Walk & cycle
Walking and cycling are the most sustainable way to travel. They're good for you and don't produce any carbon emissions!
5. Offset your emissions
Speaking of carbon emissions - you can consider offsetting them if you're able to. I offset my emissions through my electricity provider, and it only costs me £6 a month to make sure that I'm carbon neutral. This is an ideal method of figuring out how to be sustainable for those who aren't yet ready to commit to major lifestyle changes.
Composting can be difficult depending on where you're based, but even flats in urban centres can partake by using a small collection bin on their counter! Food waste is unfortunately a huge problem, so if you're able to turn a large portion of it into soil, you're making a big impact.
7. Conserve water
One reason we love using solid bar soaps around here is that it conserves water. But there are many other ways to be water conscious as well! Being mindful of how long you shower for, making sure to turn off the tap when you wash your hands or brush your teeth, and being mindful of the tap when washing dishes are just a few ways to get started.
8. Reduce your consumption
And to finish us off, an overarching reminder to reduce how much you consume, in all areas of life. When we think about the three Rs, we often focus on the "recycle" and "reuse" portion, but it's important to remember that the first R is reduce. Reducing how many things we buy is the most sustainable thing we can do sometimes. Remember that when wondering how to be sustainable it is not always important to bring new things into our lives, but rather to do without some things.
I hope this has helped you get inspired to commit to learning how to be sustainable! It's especially important to be mindful heading into the holiday season, which is a wonderful time of year but certainly does not get a reputation for being eco-friendly most of the time. Sustainability is something we can all practice, and it's not only good for the planet, but in many cases better for you too!