12 sustainable swaps for 2019

Discover 12 simple swaps to make for a more sustainable 2019

As 2018 draws to a close and we welcome in the new year, many people will be setting resolutions, intentions, and goals for the year ahead. But with some reports suggesting that 80% of people do not stick to their new year’s resolutions, we’re keeping it simple for 2019 with one ‘sustainable swap’ per month to fit into your everyday life (inspired by our very own Charlie Lally’s resolution for 2018).

With just 12 years to prevent catastrophic climate change damage and a plastic pandemic like never before, here are 12 easy sustainable swaps to make each month in 2019:

JANUARY – Swap Sale Shopping for Clothes Swapping

Credits: Sylvie Tittel / Unsplash

With the January sales and messages of slashed prices emblazoned across the high street and your email inbox, it can be tempting to splurge on more stuff you don’t need just because of the discount. But this January, swap shopping for swapping by organising a clothes swap with friends and family. Bag yourself a new outfit and send unwanted clothes to a new home at the same time. Holding a swishing party is also a great way to recycle children’s clothes.

FEBRUARY – Swap Chocolates & Flowers for Self-Care & Giving Back

Show yourself some love this February with our easy DIY self-care Sunday recipes and set some time aside for yourself each morning with a new morning routine

MARCH – Swap Tea Bags for Tea Leaves & Strainers

If your morning routine just doesn’t work with out your morning cuppa, then here’s a simple swap that will make your breakfast tea taste even sweeter – swap tea bags (which often contain plastic) for loose leaf tea and a reusable strainer. Not only is it more environmentally-friendly, but it also tastes delicious. 

APRIL – Swap Wipes & Nappies for Reusable Alternatives

Take your family on a zero waste journey by swapping your usual disposable wipes and nappies for reusable and washable options that won’t contribute to landfill or ocean plastic pollution. 

For alternatives to makeup wipes, which can take up to 100 years to decompose, try knitted or muslin face cloths.

MAY – Swap Plastic Toothbrushes for Bamboo Toothbrushes

Your bathroom is often a haven for plastic. Cut down by swapping your usual plastic toothbrush for a compostable bamboo brush. 

JUNE – Swap Plastic Cutlery for Bamboo Utensils

As you travel over the summer, keep a set of reusable bamboo cutlery in your bag to avoid single-use plastic cutlery when eating on the go. 

JULY – Swap Face Wipes for Reusable Face Cloths

If you’re a pro festival goer, you’ll be familiar with the amount of face wipes used in just a few days. Did you know it can take some make-up wipes up to 100 years to break down in landfill, and often create those gross sewer-blocking fatbergs? So, if you’d like to avoid using any single-use face wipes this year, try swapping them for reusable organic cotton cloths or bamboo wipes that you can simply rinse with some water and throw in with your washing when back home. 

AUGUST – Swap Plastic Straws for Reusable Straws

Sit back with a cool drink as you enjoy the summer sun, and sip guilt free by swapping plastic straws for reusable bamboo, metal or glass straws. Carry in your bag at all times so you’re not caught out and remember to say ‘no’ to plastic if you’re offered one at the bar.

SEPTEMBER – Swap Pre-Packaged Food for Bulk Buying

Give up pre-packaged food, which often comes wrapped in unnecessary plastic packaging, by giving bulk buying a try for September. For fresh fruits and vegetables, head to your local farmer’s market to buy loose produce or order a vegetable box delivery straight to your front door (if you’re in London check out Oddbox for wonky fruit and veg delivered to your home).

For cupboard staples such as flour, nuts and grains, find your nearest zero-waste store or shop online. 

OCTOBER – Swap Food Waste for Loving Your Leftovers

Make the most of the Autumn harvest and the abundance of fruits and vegetables coming into season while also cutting down on food waste. Always store leftovers properly in air-tight containers and prioritise eating food that will spoil quickest, first. Vegetables that are about to go off can be pickled, or try making a soup from your leftovers

NOVEMBER – Swap Shopping for Making

Instead of buying gifts and decorations this year, get crafty and make your own. Not only is it less wasteful, but it is also considerably more fun than braving the shops. Get in the festive spirit by making homemade gifts and Christmas crafts.

DECEMBER – Swap wrapping paper for reusable gjft wrap

Swap the usual plastic-wrapped, glitter covered, un-recyclable foil gift wrap for squares of offcut fabrics to make colourful, reusable gift wrapping this December.