In the run up to the Holiday Season there's one thing playing on every eco-friendly consumer's mind: how can I reduce waste and keep garbage to a minimum?
From wrapping paper to cards to sandwich bags that store leftovers, all your eco-friendly efforts seem to fly out the window when the holidays arrive. But, you're not alone. Studies show that Canadian households throw away 25 percent more garbage over the festive season.
But don't let that deter you. Making small changes to your daily habits can result in not only less waste, but also save you money.
We caught up with Shannon O’Reilly, founder of the Basic Goods Trading Company in Port Moody, to give us the lowdown on small ways to save big.
Say Goodbye To Plastic Sandwich Bags
Those disposable plastic sandwich bags may save your leftovers, but not the planet. There are only so many times you can wash and reuse them, too. O'Reilly's go-to is the reusable silicone bags. The eco-friendly, BPA-free silicone storage prevents food from going stale and, while more costly upfront, in just two years O'Reilly is already making savings.
Clean Up Your Dishes
As a mother of three boys, O'Reilly's home can sometimes resemble a professional kitchen, with dirty dishes piling up. Traditional dishwashing liquid can contain nasty chemicals that pollute our water and harm fish. And what about all those plastic bottles? Using a Refill Concentrated Dishwashing Bar not only keeps our waterways clean, but saves on space.
A Fresher Fabric Freshener
The holidays bring with them amazing smells of roast dinners. Great for the senses, but not a great smell for your clothes. O'Reilly recommends making home-made freshener with two simple ingredients: water and essential oils. O'Reilly's essential oil of choice is eucalyptus, although mint and lavender work great, too.
Mop Up Your Act
With her boys spending more time indoors and her two fur babies trampling dirt into her home, keeping the floors clean can seem like an impossible task. However, single-use mop pads come with an environmental cost. Instead, O'Reilly uses organic cotton heads that can be washed after use and reused. Alternatively, you can use old towels, or even, old socks!
Goodbye Plastic Wrap, Hello Silicone Lids
Keeping food fresh for longer is a must for the savvy consumer, and the holidays bring with them leftovers for days. While plastic wrap may be convenient, it is tough to reuse, impossible to recycle, and can even contain toxic elements. “I love my Silicone Reusable Bowl Covers, I stick them on everything. They are an affordable and eco-friendly alternative, and because they come in a variety of colours, add a playful touch to your fridge,” says O'Reilly.
To learn more about the products that have helped O'Reilly eco her home, visit basicgoodstrading.co
CREATED BY BCLIVING IN PARTNERSHIP WITH BASIC GOODS TRADING COMPANY