Sustainability on a Budget
Updated: May 18
Hi everyone ♡
Today I wanted to write a few tips on how to live sustainably on a budget. Sometimes it seems that living sustainably is quiet expensive and therefore isn't for everyone. While it's true that (new) ecological & ethical products and brands usually are more expensive, that doesn't mean there aren't other ways to live sustainably without breaking the bank. I've gathered 6 tips that you hopefully find useful and can incorporate into your own sustainable journey:
Buy nothing at all (or less) The most sustainable (and budget friendliest!) thing you can do is actually not buying anything at all. While this obviously isn't doable when it comes to all aspects of life, think of food for example, it can be useful to think twice before buying something. Ask yourself the following questions: 'Do you really need it? Do you already have something similar? Do you think you will use/like it in the long haul?' We live in a society where buying new things is supposed to bring us joy, but this only lasts for a little while and afterwards this vicious cycle repeats itself. Don't get me wrong, there isn't anything wrong with buying something you really want and/or need, just make sure that it's for the right reasons.
Buy vintage/secondhand (and sell items you no longer want) Buying secondhand/vintage is a great way to save money and to avoid items going to waste. Think about clothing for example, which very often gets dumped in an underdeveloped country, which isn't only detrimental for the environment, but also for the economy of the country in question. Something that you might no longer need or want, could make someone else very happy and vice versa :) Luckily, you can also do this quite easily online these days.
Bring your own lunchbox, water bottle and/or coffee cup Bringing your own lunch isn't only good for the environment, but also for your wallet. Buying something to take away or having lunch somewhere (which can also be very nice of course!) is always more expensive than bringing your own. Take away usually contains a lot of plastic as well. The same goes for bringing your own reusable water bottle and coffee cup. Usually you get a (small) discount as well when you bring your own cup.
Use reusable items Buying reusable items might be more expensive than not reusable/throw away ones, but you should see them as an investment that will actually save you money later. For example, think of reusable razors, reusable cotton discs, a reusable grocery bag etc. Not only will it save you money in the end, it also saves you time, because you don't have to keep buying these items.
Repair items that are broken or damaged Instead of throwing away items that are broken and/or damaged, try to see if you can still fix it, either by yourself, someone you know or get it repaired somewhere. This can be a great way to lengthen the lifespan of your items and it's usually cheaper than replacing the item.
Go vegan! This might not be a very easy tip for everyone, but switching to a fully plant-based diet is a great (and possibly the biggest) way to reduce your environmental footprint. While meat and dairy replacements can be more expensive than regular meat and dairy products, it seems that now that the demand is growing, the prices are going down a bit as well. You also don't need to incorporate these into your diet, because fruit, veggies and legumes also contain everything that you need.
I hope these tips were useful!
Do you have any other tips to add?