Along with throwing open the windows and putting away the heavy winter clothes, spring is the perfect chance to switch up some habits and make more eco-conscious choices for your home and family. Even these five simple changes can go a long way in creating a healthier house that’s also friendly to the environment!
Natural Cleaning Products
While more and more natural cleaning products using less toxic ingredients are becoming more widely available, sometimes the original, homemade version is best. There are tons of effective and budget-friendly cleaners you can make using just water, baking soda, vinegar and even some essential oils for natural fragrance. With a little research and time you can find the right homemade recipe for almost any type of cleaner, knowing it’s safe around your family and not adding harmful chemicals to your air and water.
Dust, dander and even new furniture can contribute to how healthy the air in our house is, so take advantage of milder weather and open the windows, wipe down dusty surfaces and air out the house. If you’re looking to replace furniture this spring, keep in mind larger upholstered items can off-gas fumes from the foam and fabric. Common offenders are flame retardants and toxic chemicals like formaldehyde that can contribute to poor indoor air quality. This is especially important for pieces you spend an extended time in contact with like your bed, so be sure to select a low VOC, non-toxic mattress.
Personal care items are notoriously full of additives and chemicals, some being known toxins like phthalates. Purchasing more natural products for shampoo, lotion, makeup and body wash means you’ll be exposed to less harmful chemicals each day and helping signal to companies how important natural products are to you.
Cut Out Plastics
One more area where we can all make an impact is to use less disposable plastic items, like single use utensils and packaging. While not all plastics can be easily avoided these days, look around your kitchen for some simple swaps that won’t add clutter or drain your bank account. Instead of plastic sandwich bags or tupperware, opt for glassware, beeswax paper and other non-plastic reusable containers. For cooking, go for cast iron as non-stick pans can leach and chip off their non-stick coating into the food you’re cooking. Wooden spoons can be more durable than cheap plastic counterparts, and will never melt if you accidentally leave it on a hot pan.
Repurpose For A Fresh Design
Hoping to turn spring cleaning into a new design for your home? Marie Kondo might have you in the mood to toss everything that doesn’t “spark joy” and start fresh, but save some money and turn to your creative side. Switch up furniture and decor you already own instead of buying more and throwing things out that will probably end up in landfill. You’d be amazed at how simply moving items to new places and rooms, or a quick DIY decor project can accomplish the same effect you’re looking for while being eco-friendly and saving you money.