Making sustainable choices isn’t always easy.
Sometimes, sticking with what we know (and like) is easier. Sometimes, choice is confusing. Sometimes, we have perceptions which hold us back from change.
So to help, we’re going to address some popular misperceptions around making more earth-friendly choices.
Maybe this will help unleash the eco-warrior that lies underneath, desperate to get out and protect the planet.
Or, perhaps you’ll just make one or two small changes, which will still make a big difference.
Going eco means…spending loads more money!
A popular myth this one; eco-friendly products are more expensive, a luxury indulgence of the wealthy, compared to their plastic-ridden, earth-damaging competitors.
Distilling this myth means looking beyond purely price (but not always). It means looking at long term value. And it means considering impact.
Getting more for your money
One example where the price comparison myth doesn’t add up is with handsoap. A bar of soap vs the average bottle size (250ml) of liquid bottled soap? Our handsoaps far outlast liquid soap offering a cheaper handwashing experience. But the value doesn’t end there. Handwash needs up to 20 times more packaging than bar soap. You’ll be paying for this in the price too. And, for the clincher, bottled handwash is plastic, while bars of handsoap are packaged in environmentally friendly recycled materials.
So a bar of soap is both a financial win, and an environmental win. We’ll leave that no brainer decision in your clean, capable hands!
Multiple or long-term use vs single use
There’s no point comparing the cost of a short-term use toothbrush or disposable nappy with a bamboo toothbrush or reusable nappy. Of course, the first option will be cheaper in a direct price comparison.
However, the sustainable versions will be more cost-effective because they are designed to last, be reused (possibly with parts occasionally updated or replaced), therefore you’ll see cost savings over the long term.
Taking the longer-term view will enable you to see not just the environment benefits, but the benefits in your wallet too.
Brush up on your DIY
Some eco-friendly alternatives don’t involve spending much at all. If you really want to max out on cost savings (at the same time as saving the planet) there’s home-made alternatives to many bathroom products.
You can whip up your own natural oil air freshener, throw together a minty mouthwash, even get creative with your own soap creation from left over soap scraps.
And yes, we know time is money. But some of these activities could be fun and satisfying, a nice little craft project of which you will be proud.
Special offers to take the edge off
If you are concerned about the prices of some products, most businesses run special offers and promotions from time to time.
In fact, sign up to our newsletter or visit our website to check out the bulk buy, pick and mix and other offers we have available.
Going eco means….a massive inconvenience
Most things in life worth fighting for involve putting an ickle bit of effort in don’t they?
And that’s no different here, although we are going to show you how some eco-products offer ultimate convenience.
The products are there if you look for them
Okay, so you can pitch up to your local supermarket and buy most standard products with ease. However, if you know what you’re looking for, you’ll be surprised how many eco-brands are now available in high street stores.
Take us for instance. Our bars of soap are now available in Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Asda, Tesco, Boots and more.
And many environmentally friendly alternatives can be found on the supermarket shelves, just make sure they are genuinely green (rather than green washing). If you’re in doubt, all the products we recommend pass the genuinely eco-test.
Order and replace – online and delivered
In many ways, retailers and suppliers of eco-products have gone out of their way to make accessing their goods as easy as possible. Most offer online ordering and delivery.
Many work on a subscription basis, so you’re always covered. This is particularly useful in the case of toilet paper, why take a risk when a company like Who gives a crap can keep you stocked up?
And items that are reusable and sustainable put the control in your hands, rather than the suppliers. Yes, you may have to wash reusable period products. But you’ll always have them available, without needing a trip to the shops.
Going eco means….boycotting, banning and missing out on the things you like
Of course, if a business is indulging in ultra-damaging, unethical or cruel practices, most people will want to turn against them. There’s been plenty of examples where bad practice coming to light has led businesses to make changes out of fear of damaged reputations and lost sales.
But generally speaking, the eco-lobby, those of us who are passionate about protecting the planet, want to do so in a way that is positive, helpful, and protects communities and supply chains, not sabotages them.
Blanket boycotts without research and understanding can do damage and harm.
The Palm Oil story
Palm Oil which appears in many products and foods, has had a poor reputation due to the known harmful impact it has had on wildlife and the environment, specifically the Sumatran Orangutans. Large swathes of forests in the Sumatra have been removed to make way for the production of palm oil, leading some environmental commentators to call for boycott of palm oil in favour of alternatives.
A deeper inspection of the social, cultural, environmental, and financial impact of a total boycott however has revealed that this is not the best approach. Whole communities rely on the market for palm oil. Alternatives may have equally, if not more, damaging consequences.
A better route therefore is to work with the communities and farmers and support them on a more sustainable approach to producing the palm oil, which doesn’t rely on deforestation, works towards reforestation and makes a commitment to protecting and restoring the habitat.
Be realistic, take responsibility, enjoy the rewards
There’s no need to feel like you are missing out. Making greener choices means taking control, understanding the impact of your decisions, and contributing something positive. And there’s a world of choice and opportunities to make simple swaps available, right here.
Not many of us manage to live purely eco-friendly lives. But any little bit we do, can and does make a difference.
By busting these myths, we hope we’ve given you the knowledge and confidence to make good decisions that work for you and the world around you.
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