It’s Earth Day, friends! As a vegan and lifelong advocate for animals and the planet, I’ve tried to make swaps in my everyday life that lessen my environmental footprint. You don’t have to dedicate your life to sustainability to make an impact, though! Even one or two simple changes can make a big difference. Here are some of my favorite eco-friendly products!
Isn’t Earth Day such a fun holiday? I love taking a moment to appreciate the beauty all around us and think about the ways that we can be a little gentler on our planet. I know just how overwhelming the concept of sustainability can be, so I thought I’d share some of my favorite product swaps that I think are a great place to start. You don’t have to revamp your entire life to live in an eco-friendly way! Making small and simple swaps with eco-friendly products makes a bigger difference than you realize.
Every April 22 people across the world (an estimated 1 billion people in more than 190 countries!) mobilize to take action and discuss the ways we can become better stewards of our world. The first Earth Day was back in 1970 and it’s so cool to think about this day that has come to unite us across political parties, countries, and religions thanks to the one thing we have in common: our home on this planet!
I am by no means perfect at this. I don’t think any one person can be! Life is fast and busy with three young kids, but I try to do my part with my purchases to be a conscious consumer and select products that are not only healthier for us but also healthier for the planet. Thankfully, they usually go hand-in-hand!
Eco-Friendly Products for Cleaning: Branch Basics
Branch Basics created a line of non-toxic, biodegradable cleaning products with a mission to reduce plastic waste on home products. How cool is that?! They do this by sending you cleaning concentrates, letting you add water at home and reducing the amount of plastic needed for packaging. Their bottles are refillable and their ingredients are all plant- and mineral-based, vegan, and non-toxic, so they’re perfectly safe around children and animals. We use Branch Basics for laundry, home cleaning, and even hand soap. Definitely one of my favorite eco-friendly products! They now have sustainable glass spray bottle too!
Reusable Paper Towels
These pair perfectly with the Branch Basics cleaning products! I love having reusable paper towels on hand, and these Wowables are the best ones I’ve used. I love that they seem to get more absorbent with each wash and I never run out of paper towels!
Eco-Friendly Products I Love: Reusable Sponges
This is another swap that’s easy as can be! I use these sponges for cleaning and doing dishes, and they can be tossed into the washing machine or on the top rack of the dishwasher. It’s one of those eco-friendly products that I use daily!
Plant Milk: Joi
By now you’ve probably seen some of the oat milk craze happening! Oat milk is the latest and greatest in plant-based milks and you know I’m totally on board. Plant milks are so much gentler on our planet than animal milk and they taste amazing. Joi is the company at the front of the movement! They use zero-waste packaging for their plant milk bases, which just get some blender time with filtered water to create milk alternatives (cashew, almond, and oat milks) at home. They’re reducing packaging waste and offer you an improved carbon footprint because one pail of Joi yields up to 60 quarts of milk. That’s so much packaging that isn’t headed to a landfill, plus you’re preventing boxed milks that are 98% water being shipped around in refrigerated trucks. Amazing!
Buy with the discount code: EATINGBYELAINE
My Favorite Reusable Water Bottle
I love how fancy this water bottle feels! It totally elevates my daily water drinking game and actually motivates me to drink more water than I would otherwise. Isn’t it funny how sparkle can do that?!
Anytime I use these on my Instagram stories I get a TON of questions! I love Hummingbird glass straws whenever I make a smoothie or even just for drinking water. They’re clear, so it’s really easy to see if they need to be cleaned, and the glass is so much stronger than you might think. They come with a cleaning stick so it’s easy to keep them looking like new! Straws are one of the most popular eco-friendly products lately and I love it. My kids also love these silicone straws with their smoothies.
Reusable Storage Bags: Rezip
Raise your hand if you go through plastic bags like crazy! Packing lunches, storing ingredients, refrigerating leftovers…it all adds up. I love using storage bags that can be washed and reused to keep plastic out of landfills! I’m recently into Rezip bags, which I found on Amazon. They’re super affordable and I love their stand-up options that make them so handy for scooping food! Here is their 2-Piece Tall Leakproof set and their 3-Piece Set of Smaller Rezip Bags.
Silicone Stretch Lids: Eco-Friendly Swap for Plastic Wrap
Speaking of leftovers…these silicone stretch lids are AMAZING and turn any bowl or can into an airtight storage container. They’re dishwasher and microwave safe, so easy to clean, and come in sizes that fit the smallest can all the way up to your biggest mixing bowl.
Silicone Baking Mats
These baking mats are an amazing way to save money while drastically reducing the amount of parchment paper and foil you use! They’re totally oven safe and line your baking sheets so nothing sticks. They make cleanup so easy!
Silicone Baking Cups
If you bake any kind of muffins or cupcakes regularly these silicone baking liners are a must-have! I wash them in the top rack of my dishwasher and use them again and again. They’re also really cute for putting snacks in for the kids!
XTrema Non-Toxic Cookware
Last year I discovered this 100% ceramic cookware company: Xtrema. I own their 10-inch Versa skillet, which is free of all toxic elements – meaning it is more than just ceramic coated, it is entirely ceramic! I learned that when pans are simply coated in ceramic they may contain synthetic bonding materials and chemicals like PFOAs, which concerns me as my old cookware is starting to chip. Their products are dishwasher, microwave, refrigerator and oven safe. They also offer a variety of sizes and colors. I love the look of this skillet… I think it’s pretty enough to use as a serving dish! USE MY CODE: EatByE10 for 10% off! Plus, they are having a 1-day only Earth Day sale: 20% OFF EVERYTHING site wide, 25% OFF Studio and Extra 15% OFF with Email Sign up! Use my 10% coupon code on top of all that!
Another cookware company that I’ve recently become a fan of is Caraway. They have a mineral-based coating and a super clean manufacturing process that releases significantly less CO2. They are SO easy to clean and absolutely beautiful! Use THIS LINK for an automatic 10% discount.
Eco-Friendly Products: Glass Storage Containers
When possible, I try to buy from the bulk section of the grocery store. This not only saves money but reduces the waste of plastic containers. I store my nuts, seeds, grains and homemade products in glass jars in my pantry, refrigerator and freezer. As a bonus, they look beautiful! Here are some of my favorites:
- Stackable Glass Food Storage Containers, Set of 3 – these are great for storing legumes, nuts and seeds
- Glass wide-mouth jars, 8 ounce (set of 12)
- Ball Mason Jar Wide Mouth Clear Glass, 16-Ounces (set of 4)
- Glass storage jugs with lids (perfect for homemade plant milk and homemade veggie broth)
- Tulip Jars, 12.5 ounces (set of 6) – great for storing leftover sauces
- Weck Glass Jars, 0.5 Liter, set of 6 – perfect for storing legumes, nuts, sees, grains etc. from the bulk food section. I also use these for storing homemade vegan sour cream, vegan cashew cream, vegan nutella, homemade chia jam, overnight oats and chia seed pudding
Eco-Friendly Personal Care Products
- Sustainable Nail Products: I love that this non-toxic product swap falls into the category of self-care! Sundays makes nail products that are completely cruelty-free, non-toxic, and totally vegan. They have a soy nail polish remover that’s super gentle and comes in a beautiful glass container. I love supporting a company with such an incredible mission and story! They also have candles made with soy wax, natural oils, and cotton wicks. Use code EATINGBYELAINE for 10% off and be sure to check out their incredible site-wide Mother’s Day sale going on now.
- Reusable Makeup Remover Pads: This is another super simple swap that has a big impact! Use these gentle cotton Greenzla pads in place of makeup wipes or cotton balls. They even come with a cute storage box and a laundry bag that’s super handy. You could just hang the laundry bag on your bathroom door handle, toss used wipes in there, and launder when it’s time.
- Eco-Friendly Dental Products: This is a recent discovery that has me so excited! I recently chatted with RiseWell and was completely impressed by their mission to change the way we think about oral hygiene. They make tooth care products without fluoride, and all of their packaging is 100% recyclable. They’re even working on compostable tubes for the future! How cool is that?! Their products use minerals instead of chemicals and even my kids are obsessed with how yummy their kid’s toothpaste is. Use code ELAINE10 for 10% off!
- PiperWei Deodorant: This is a super sustainable company that I have been excited about lately. Their deodorant is free from toxic ingredients like aluminum and triclosan and they even work for sensitive skin. I also love that my purchases support a business owned by women of color! ELAINE20 for 20% off!
- Thinx Period Panties: Anyone who menstruates knows that sustainable period products can be intimidating! I admire that Thinx is encouraging people to know their bodies and use sustainable products that don’t end up in landfills. Thinx underwear work for both heavy and light days, they have no odor, and they feel dry all day long! It honestly feels like a miracle! I have the hiphuggers, the cotton briefs, and the cotton bikinis. I also have friends who use and love Bloody Buddy Cup, a menstrual cup with tons of educational resources on their Instagram, and I’m kind of intrigued by that option as well. The code INSTABUDDY gets 10% off!
Okay, so here’s my challenge to you: make one swap! Replace just one disposable item in your home with a reusable one. I’m guessing you’ll be surprised by just how simple it is! You’re saving money AND saving the planet. It feels amazing! Happy Earth Day, friends!