Going green at home is often one of the first steps to a sustainable lifestyle. It's where we eat and sleep, where we connect to our loved ones or center ourselves. It's only natural that it be the first thing to which we turn our attentions.
Much of what we do to live green isn't something that fits on a list of ideas. In our every choice, we attempt to decrease our footprint by turning off the faucet a few seconds faster or choosing not to use a light when possible. We may buy the smaller laptop to save resources or make sacrifices that aren't necessary to our lives. All of these daily choices may seem overwhelming, but with time they work together to simplify our lives.
Simplifying our life goes a long way in going green at home. Looking back to simpler times for inspiration (while using innovative alternative technologies) can help guide us in environmentally-responsible actions. Here are a few principles behind simple living:
Keeping in mind these principles of simple living will keep you on track as you peruse the following articles and begin going green at home.
Conservation begins at home by considering the true value of what we use, how we use it and why. It's important to understand the sources of energy and natural resources, like water, and it's also important to consider the affects our over-consumption causes to our environment.
According to the University of Nebraska, approximately 30% of the nation is reporting drought conditions84 and yet few people are conscious of their water usage. Reducing water waste is easy with the tips in the article below.
110+ Ways to Save Water
We use purified water for everything we do. But we only use it once before we send it back for more purification. This is where home water recycling comes into play. For instance, did you know your washing machine water can sustain your garden?
How To Start Greywater Recycling
The price of energy is going up and our natural resource reserve is dwindling. It's not possible for everyone to pull off the energy grid but it is possible for everyone to reduce their personal consumption. From electricity to natural gas, these tips will help.
85+ Energy Saving Tips
Perhaps one of the greatest consumers of energy, heating our homes can be expensive and inefficient. With a few tips you can find sustainable and affordable ways to stay warm and save money while conserving energy.
26 Home Heating Tips and Alternatives
Depending on where you live keeping cool may be an even bigger concern for you, especially as energy prices rise and our dependence on finite resources increases. These tips will help you cut back on your air conditioning usage, save money and lessen your carbon footprint.
28 Home Cooling Tips and Alternatives
Other home conservation articles:
With the damage caused by chemicals, it's important to rethink the way in which we care for our home. Cleaning and managing pests shouldn't increase our risk of disease. Going green at home increases your health by removing harmful chemicals from your environment.
There are many natural, more sustainable options to controlling household pests. Through prevention and the use of organic pesticides almost all home pest issues can be prevented.
The Most Effective Organic Pesticides
Get Rid of Flies and Fruit Flies
Keep your home and family safe by using non-toxic, all-natural alternatives to chemical cleaners. Make your own natural cleaners easily, inexpensively and efficiently.
How to Use Natural Household Cleaners
Why invest in expensive electrical air purifiers when you could purchase a few types of houseplants to clean and filter your air naturally and inexpensively?
19 Types of Houseplants that Clean the Air
You don't need harmful chemicals to eliminate odors in or around your home. You just need a few tips on removing odors naturally and safely without adding any harmful chemicals to your indoor air.
Removing Odors Naturally (without "Febreze")
Perhaps the most sustainable cleaning product on the market, soap nuts have numerous benefits (such as being all-natural and affordable) and even more uses (from your laundry to your car and everything between).
The Benefits and Uses of Soap Nuts
The sun is shining, the breeze is cool and you're ready to freshen your home with a few spring cleaning tips. Forget the disposable supplies and toxic cleaning supplies, and make your experience fun, enjoyable and eco-friendly.
Spring Cleaning Tips for a Non-Toxic Home
Now that we've got the big topics out of the way, let's move on to some of the smaller things you can do in and around the house as you continue going green at home, starting in the kitchen.
Cooking and baking with environmentally-friendly and safe pots and pans is very important. Whatever you use has the potential to taint your food. Instead of teflon, mke the switch to cast iron cookware: it's easy to clean, simple to use, energy-efficient and versatile.
Cast Iron Cookware: The Eco-Friendly Choice
When searching for a kitchen cutting board, there is one clear choice that is safe, long-lasting and healthy. No harmful cleaners, no worry of bacteria and completely sustainable, too!
The Only Naturally Antibacterial Cutting Board
Many of the tips for the bathroom are included in the Water Conservation articles above. But let's chat about some of the other things we can do.
It's a topic most people find a little crazy, until they realize just how common it already is, even in their own homes! Yes, cloth toilet paper is considered a big step, but this article will show you just how easy it is to implement and why you'll want to.
The Dangers of Recycled Toilet Paper
When we're talking about going green at home, and specifically in the bathroom, we cant help but overlap with the others sections of this site, such as the personal care we do in the bathroom. In this section we give ways to green you self-care practices.
Personal Care for Organic Living
Considering that we probably spend upwards of a 1/3 of our life in our bedrooms, this is an important topic to cover. What else would you like to see in this section?
Have you ever stopped to consider the mattress toxins you may be sleeping on? Below is a guest article from a mattress specialist, someone who has turned toxic-free sleeping into his career to ensure consumers know the safety of choosing the right mattress for you and your family
Is your mattress safe?
Going green at home will inevitably bring up the topic of paint. We decided to test out a variety of brands to see which are safe, and actually work well for interior walls. We tested a variety of milk paints, no-VOC paints, and low-VOC paints to find which we preferred.
Low-VOC Paint Comparisons
Staining your own furniture often comes into play when you're refurbishing vintage or upcycled furniture, old wood floors, or building your own. We looked at a selection of wood stains to find out which ones were both eco-friendly and performed well and have shared our results in the article below.
Natural Wood Stain: Which is the best?
After you've stained the upcycled or antique furniture or refurbished your wood floors, you're going to be appalled to have to spread on toxic VOC-laden sealants over it. We tested and reviewed several brands ourselves in order to find ones that both worked and were eco-friendly and came up with mixed results.
Natural Wood Sealer: Which is the best?
For all the articles that don't really fit in any other Going Green at Home category, check out our growing list of tips and ideas below.
Whichever step you take next, remember to have fun!
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