I've been obsessed with how amazing Netflix is at spreading awareness about sustainability, climate change, and just a greener lifestyle in general. I've pretty much seen all the David Attenborough documentaries and followed most of the articles covering the young and bold Greta Thunberg. It's a bit embarrassing how many times I've watched The Day After Tomorrow 😅
Is it just me or, does all the information about sustainability hit a particular "what are we doing!" kind of nerve when you're a parent. We want a better life for our children and a brighter future in general. Looking back, I feel terrible, because pre-baby, I always thought, "What's the point? I'm only one person! What I do wouldn't make a world of difference". But actually, the truth is that every little helps. You can influence so many people, the kids, partner, friends and even your in-laws; think of it like the domino effect.
So, here are a few simple steps I've taken to live a greener lifestyle for a better future:
Start recycling ♻️
This one was an eye-opener! Most things say recyclable, but I couldn't actually believe how much of it still ends up going in the bin. For example, it might just be 60% recyclable instead of 100%, but "that's fine" because it's still recyclable, right? A little controversial if you ask me.
My top tip would be to read the labels and avoid non-recyclable materials wherever possible. Download a recycling guide and stick it up in the kitchen so that everyone can see what goes where. Because recycling is essential and everyone should know about it!
In short, recycling conserves natural resources, reduces pollution and saves energy. By recycling as a family, you are all involved in sorting and cleaning up rubbish to produce "secondary materials", which are then reused in making new products. The primary materials that need recycling are glass, paper, metal and plastic. It'll take some time to get your head around (it definitely did for me 😵💫), but it was so worth it, and it reminded my partner and me about the three R's we got taught in school - Reuse, Reduce and Recycle.
Get rid of any one time use plastics 🧴
I never really thought about this before my lightbulb moment, but how many toothbrushes, carrier bags, straws, water bottles, and even toiletries does one household use in a week, let alone in a year. Yeah, it's crazy when you actually think about it- I don't even want to imagine a lifetime's worth of it!
The simple steps that I took started with replacing our plastic toothbrushes with a bamboo alternative, chucking the plastic straws in the recycling and using mettle ones instead, keeping a tote bag stashed away instead of buying a plastic carrier bag overtimes and replacing plastic baby milk bottles with durable glass ones. I also encouraged everyone to carry a refillable water bottle and to get toiletry refills instead of buying a new shampoo and conditioner every time (who knew that was an option!).
I also took a giant leap in sustainable feminine hygiene by replacing my sanitary care with sustainable/ biodegradable products (Plus, they're healthier for your bits). All this might seem overwhelming to read in one go, but it honestly took me a good month or two to implement. I promise you that it gets kinda fun once you start, that proud sense of "I'm making a difference" 🥰.
Here are some brands that we'd vouch for:
MyHabox - They are the UK's first dental subscription box for children and have a selection of bamboo toothbrushes.
Dame - For all things sustainable period related.
Neat - A great addition to the house cleaning cabinet; beautiful cleaning products that perform brilliantly & cut down waste.
Onloan & Byrotation - If you love buying new clothes to stay on top of trends, these brands are great for the fashion and money-conscious! On-loan works as a monthly fashion subscription service and Byrotation gives you the option to rent out your clothes for some extra cash or pick out that perfect "one night only outfit".
Shop Mindfully 🛍
I think this topic can be a personal challenge for some. We're all living in a world that works in favour of the "gotta have it now culture"- everything is at our fingertips, all it takes is a click of a button. As normal as it sounds, this approach is the cause of fast fashion, mass production, and even directly contributing to climate change. So, as we head into Black Friday and the festive period, let's be mindful of what we're buying. I always think of a few things before I get sucked into the sales and fashion trends:
Do I really, truly, honestly need it?
Am I going to get my use out of it?
Is it good quality?
Is it sustainably made?
Do I actually love it?
These questions help me understand and differentiate my needs, wants and impulse buys. Not to forget, it's a great trick for saving money!
Mamamade's Sustainability Initiatives 💜
We at Mamamade have incorporated sustainability into the heart of our brand because we understand that it's better to leave the world better than we found it! This is why we take care of all the sustainability aspects - so that you don't have to.
Here are some of the steps that we take:
Our packaging is 100% recyclable, from the food packaging to the box it all arrives in! We've also included denim off cuts to our packing to ensure that the sustainability cycle keeps moving. This gives you and your kids a chance to get creative - why not try some denim DIY. If not, all you have to do is scan the QR code and send it back to us. As simple as that!
Our shipping is also carefully thought out and is carbon neutral, which means that it's better for the environment and contributes far less to pollution than some.
Our zero-waste company policy ensures that we aren't wasting any food in the kitchen when making our delicious meals! Not only that, but Mamamade flash freezes all of its meals so that they can stay fresher for longer. Keep the food in the freezer for up to 4 months and, once defrosted, it can be heated up for a second time.
Our food is 100% organic, ensuring that it's healthy, tasty and guarantees that it's ethically and sustainably sourced so that it doesn't harm the environment or wildlife in the process.
No one is perfect, and it can be challenging to change certain things that we've gotten so used to in our day-to-day lives. But all I'd say is you'll never know unless you try it! Try taking small steps to a greener you.
Himanshi @ Mamamade