Modern living has given us many ways to make our lives easier. You can travel anywhere or shop online whenever you want. You can hop into your vehicle, drive for five minutes, and have a meal cooked for you. But the question so few of us are asking is, how is this affecting our planet? Is it sustainable?
From single-use plastics to the fast fashion movement, it’s easy to get caught up in life without realizing the toll it’s taking on our planet. So what are some simple things you can do to fix that?
Make Your Home More Eco-Friendly
You spill your drink on the counter, and the first thing you reach for is a roll of paper towels. It’s the easiest way—you can sop up the liquid, throw them out, and not have to worry about staining a real towel. But in the long run, is there a better option for you and for the earth? A few easy ways to create an eco-friendly home are:
- Use LED lightbulbs – these types of lightbulbs last longer. That means you’re buying a higher-quality product while also creating less waste.
- Eliminate plastic. While 100% getting rid of plastic in your home probably isn’t possible, there are some small changes that will make a huge difference. Investing in compostable trash bags and plastic baggie alternatives are good ways to start.
- Buy natural cleaners. This might take some research, but it’ll be worth it. Look for a brand that lists all of their ingredients and displays the Leaping Bunny and Fair Trade logos.
Consider reusable products. There are such things as reusable silicon baggies or reusable paper towels. All you have to do is wash them, let them dry, and then they’re good to use again.
Support Ethical and Eco-Friendly Personal Care Brands
It’s easy to grab personal care products off our grocery store shelves, but what are you paying for? Brands hide behind bottles instead of explaining how their products are made. There are a couple ways to combat that:
- Shop online. You’ll be able to explore the brand’s values and practices on their website. Hopefully, you’ll also get more information on the ingredients they use.
- Read labels. If you don’t like shopping online, this is your best bet. Always look for the Leaping Bunny Logo (meaning the products weren’t tested on animals).
- Consider making your own. There are lots of recipes online for homemade soaps, makeup, hand sanitizer—you name it. This way you get to choose your ingredients and what container it gets put in.
Cut Back on Single-Use Plastics
You’re out at a baseball game with friends, and you’re thirsty. So you buy a bottle of water, guzzle it down, and toss it in the trash on your way out. You begin to notice how often you repeat this cycle.
Plastic waste is a growing issue—one we try to avoid by shipping our premium T-shirts in plastic-free packaging. A few easy ways you can start eliminating single-use plastics are:
- Carry a reusable water bottle. This will help cut back on the amount of plastic water bottles you use.
- Use cloth shopping bags. Even though plastic shopping bags can usually be brought back to the store for recycling, why use them if you don’t have to?
- Avoid buying foods that come in plastic packaging. The best way to do this is by supporting local farmer’s markets. Another option is using paper bags at a whole foods co-op.
Look for the Fair Trade Logo
Products that our Fair Trade, like our 100% organic cotton t-shirts, come from companies that have to meet certain requirements:
- Fair wages. To be a Fair Trade Certified company, workers must be given a fair wage. This means they’ll be able to invest in their families and futures.
- Workers have a voice. Fair Trade brands have to meet certain standards, like creating gender equality and a work-life balance for their workers.
- Environmental protection. Fair Trade companies are prohibited from using harmful chemicals. Their goal is to keep the planet as healthy as possible for as long as possible.
- Community as a whole is protected. Fair Trade Community Development Funds aid people in building schools, getting clean water, and having affordable healthcare.
Wear Sustainably-Sourced Clothes
Every month, you hit up the mall and shop for a new outfit. Sooner or later, you realize that you have no idea how your clothes were made, or the conditions of the worker who put them together.
Ethical and environmentally conscious brands work hard to eliminate waste, buy from sustainable resources, and treat their workers well. They’ll also give you high-quality clothing that will last longer than department store brands. A few ways to make sure you’re supporting ethical brands are:
- Do your research. Make sure you know about the company before buying from them. Our top quality t-shirts are made from 100% organic cotton. That means 95% less water waste, no chemical pesticides leaching into the ground, and happier farmers.
- Find out the where and how. You can trust Fair Trade Certified brands like us to take care of our employees (and the planet). As a Fair Trade T-shirt manufacturer, we keep a close watch on our entire process. All of our premium T-shirts are made in the USA, and we carefully regulate safe working conditions and working hours.
- Shop online. As mentioned above, this is a great way to explore a company’s values. Look at their about page or their blog to learn more about their process. Having the Fair Trade logo on their site will also be helpful in deciding if you should trust a brand.
At The Classic T-Shirt Company, we take our planet seriously. We encourage you to try out a few of these simple tips. Whether it’s as simple as buying a reusable water bottle or as elaborate as making your own soaps, every step counts.