When thinking about ways to be more eco-friendly, there are some pieces of advice that are more familiar than others: turn off the lights at home, take shorter showers, hop on your bike or carpool. It should come as no surprise that there are plenty more opportunities to make greener choices every day.
For example, introducing more plant-based foods to your diet is a great way to help Mother Nature.
In fact, according to one study, eating a plant-based diet is the single biggest thing we can do to help fight climate change and protect the planet.
Just by switching to a plant-based diet, you can potentially halve your carbon "foodprint", use a fifth less water and cut land use by three quarters — but only 4% of Canadians know it.
While eating a plant-based diet is the biggest thing you can do to help the environment, it's not the only thing you can do.
The good news is that there are tons of sustainable, eco-friendly products available to help you help the environment. From personal care and kitchen items to dairy alternatives, you can be more eco-friendly in all aspects of your life.
Swap To 100% Bamboo Toilet Paper
Price: $52.00 for 48 rolls
Details: Since bamboo actually regrows after it's harvested, toilet paper made from sustainably sourced bamboo is a winner when it comes to sustainability.
You can get bamboo toilet paper pretty much anywhere you'd buy normal toilet paper, but be sure to keep an eye out for B Corp Certification — the only certification that measures a company's entire environmental and social performance.
And while the price tag may seem high compared to your typical TP, the super-soft bamboo alternative is almost double the length of what you get from your regular supermarket rolls.
Add Earth's Own Oat Milk To Your Morning Tea
Details: Did you know oat milk needs seven times less water to produce than dairy milk? According to Earth's Own, if you switch to using oat milk for one year, you can save up to 42,220 litres of water.
Voted by Canadians as the best-tasting dairy milk alternative, Earth's Own Unsweetened Original Oat Milk is made with oats grown using 7x less water than cow's milk. The oats are farmed right here in Canada, and even the carton is made from plant-based materials.
And it doesn't end at oat milk. Through their Plant Project initiative, Earth's Own also provides mentorship support and grants to Canadians to help get their plant-based ideas off the ground.
Say No To Plastic & Yes To Sustainable Materials, Like Bamboo Plates
Details: Some single-use products are really hard to give up just because of their convenience, like picnicware. Thankfully there are alternatives to flimsy, polluting plastic plates.
Bamboo plates, like the Bambu Veneerware 9", are certified organic, FDA-approved food-safe, compostable and biodegradable.
Start Cleaning With Swedish Dishcloths
Details: Swedish dishcloths are a great replacement for paper towels and kitchen sponges. They absorb 20 times their weight in liquid, are machine washable and can even be boiled (no more germs!).
These Swedish dishcloths by Nature Bee will last between nine to 12 months and are made from 70% wood cellulose and 30% cotton, meaning they're completely compostable.
Go Green With Eco-Friendly Phone Cases
Details: Made of 100% compostable flax shive and plant-based biopolymer, Pela cases are the world’s first truly sustainable phone case.
Their manufacture produces 25% fewer carbon emissions, 70% less waste and uses 35% less water than typical plastic phone cases. Pela also donates profits to ocean cleanup and preservation initiatives.
There are also tons of colours and designs available, so you'll have no trouble finding one that fits your taste.
Switch To A Menstrual Cup
Details: According to Nixit, the average menstruator throws away 250 pounds of disposable period products in a lifetime.
With plastic a key component of menstrual product composition and packaging, this is bad news for the environment.
Switching to a reusable menstrual cup like Nixit reduces waste by 93%. Their cups are made in Canada with 100% medical-grade BPA-free silicone, making them a safe and sustainable switch.
Add Compostable Garbage Bags To Your Kitchen
Details: Have you ever considered how much plastic gets wasted with garbage bags? The good news is there is a compostable option, and it's easily available.
Paper bags like those made by Bag to Earth are sourced from sustainably managed forests and are 100% plastic-free. Using paper bags helps divert food waste from landfills, so you can feel good about the future of your scraps.
Use Earth's Own Almond Milk As A Dairy Alternative
Details: Grown using half of the water that is used when creating dairy milk, Earth's Own Almond Milk also uses 16 times less land compared to cow's milk and produces four times less greenhouse gas emissions.
If you're looking to make your diet a little greener, splash some almond milk over your cereal, mix it in smoothies, use it to make dairy-free ice cream and create baked goods.
Make Taking Off Your Makeup Eco-Friendly With Reusable Rounds
Details: Reusable makeup rounds don't just make your beauty routine more eco-friendly by keeping trash out of landfills but they're more affordable too.
Reusable pads made with bamboo or cotton microfibre stick around a lot longer than single-use rounds and makeup wipes, meaning you'll buy (and spend) less if you opt for this green alternative.
Give Your Morning Smoothie A Chic Upgrade With Silicone Straws
Details: Plastic straws contribute about 2,000 tonnes of waste to oceans every year, which is terrible news for marine life.
One way to help reduce the number of plastic straws left in the ocean is to use silicone, glass or metal straws instead.
They're easy to find, too. Nordstrom sells a pack of 10 silicone straws, including four travel cases, making it super convenient for you to pop out your sustainable straw whenever you need it.
Get Down With Beeswax Wraps
Details: Beeswax wraps are a great alternative to the typical plastic wrap found in many kitchens.
They're softened by the warmth of your hands, creating a waxy texture that allows them to stick together much like plastic wrap. Use them for fruit, vegetables, cheese, sandwiches, leftovers and pretty much anything else you can eat!
Nature Bee's Beeswax Wraps are handmade from Vancouver Island-sourced beeswax, 100% cotton, pine tree resin and jojoba oil. They're washable, reusable, compostable and can last up to a year with proper care and storage.
Store Your Snacks In Reusable Silicone Storage Bags
Details: Suitable for both the fridge and the freezer, these food bags are made from food-grade silicone and are a seamless swap from single-use plastic food bags.
They come in every size, shape and colour imaginable so you can finally get serious about finding a more environmentally friendly way to store your snacks.