Living a green lifestyle is obviously a great way to benefit the environment, from the local community aspect right up to the global level. But did you know that, as well as helping to preserve our world, ‘going green’ can save you money too? We look at some easy ways to do both, below.
Getting into the ethos
The mantra of eco-warriors everywhere is to reduce, reuse and recycle and this refers to the mindset involved in moving away from a consumerist lifestyle and adopting green principles. So, start using fewer things and adopting old-fashioned principles of frugality in your life. Use what you need and don’t waste. This means not throwing away food in your fridge, so plan your meals in advance. Re-use things where possible. For example, save jam jars and try making your own jam from fresh fruit in the garden! Recycle when you do need to dispose of something, both by using a composter in the garden for your organic waste and by using the council recycling facilities to avoid sending waste to landfill.
This is an important area for both carbon reductions and serious money saving. If you must have a car, opt for an eco model. It will cost you less in terms of petrol and road tax and it will also vastly reduce your carbon emissions. Consider, though, whether a car is really necessary. A car pool will help you achieve even more of these gains, as you simply share with other drivers making similar journeys to you, offering great flexibility. Even better – get a bike or walk!
Again, there are a number of things you can do to be eco-friendly. You can do a home energy audit to see where you’re currently wasting energy and where you can make savings, for instance by replacing your old-fashioned glass light bulbs with modern energy-saving bulbs. You can start growing your own fruits and vegetables. You can also turn the home thermostat down and either move around more or put on a jumper and you can use green cleaning products, such as those based on lemon juice, vinegar and bicarbonate of soda. Look online for ideas and tips, or speak to the post-war generation who will remember the age of austerity well and intuitively know about green cleaning!
Why not also try making your own beauty products rather than using chemical-infused commercial ones. For example, mashed avocado and honey makes a great face mask and a great hair mask alike. Olive oil is a natural moisturiser and full fat milk makes a terrific facial cleanser! There are plenty of ideas and recipes online, which are good fun to experiment with. For example, did you know that you could use freshly mashed strawberries to exfoliate your skin rather than using expensive fruit AHA products?
Finally, one of the most important cornerstones of living a green lifestyle is to create a feeling of community and belonging. So join community groups, become active and add your support to local initiatives. You’ll have fun, meet new people and feel that you’re genuinely part of something positive and proactive to make the most of your local environment, both for you and for your family.
The article was contributed on behalf of IVA Experts. If you’re concerned about mounting debts or have money worries, you can visit their site to use the IVA calculator and find out if you’re eligible for an IVA.