When we buy something, do we think much about its journey? The effort made into making it and the repercussions it’ll eventually have? For most of us, probably not.

But it’s becoming increasingly more fundamental to live a waste-free life for the benefit of our environment. It seems impossible but start small and you can become a piece of the puzzle of a sustainable world.

  • Say goodbye to single-use products - Don’t ask for a straw when you buy a drink (instead use paper ones) and don’t grab 5 napkins for your dinner at a restaurant. Try to remember your own shopping bag from home instead of having to pay 5p for one and creating more waste! Refrain from buying bottles of water when you’re out and about – 16 million plastic bottles end up in landfills A DAY in the UK! Invest in a cool reusable water bottle (check out the funky ones on offer at https://www.chillysbottles.com)

  • Spend consciously – More and more shops around the UK are starting to sell zero-waste products. In Cardiff, Ripple Living on Albany Road are doing their bit by working towards ‘conscious consuming’. They sell everything from ‘help yourself’ wholefoods, to deodorant and toilet paper. They also sell cutlery, jewellery and toothbrushes; if you want it, they’ve probably got it. All eco-friendly, organic and sustainable – what more could you want? Check out their website https://www.rippleliving.co.uk

  • Plan your food and drink – Avoid buying that £3 coffee in the morning. Save yourself a load of pocket money and bring a flask with you. As for food, takeaways add an unnecessary amount to plastic waste – making budget friendly meals means you will never buy more than you need. Create hearty meals and save the leftovers for the next day (you can never go wrong with a pasta bake!). No unnecessary packaging, no food uneaten. Winner, winner waste-free dinner!

  • DIY your cleaning products – Make your surfaces shine by using bits and bobs from around your house. White vinegar, baking soda and citrus can be combined to make your house sparkling. You could even put your mixture in a glass jar or decorative pot you have lying around to save on buying a plastic container!

  • Get creative – Make your own cloths and bags from old clothes that you don’t wear anymore. Making your own milk/butter is a fun, useful way to save yourself spending money and avoiding wasting plastic. Also, use glass jars as containers for dry food and organise your cupboard in a way that will wow your guests!

Little changes DO have an impact, so live free of waste and recycle, recycle, recycle!!