In my attempt at being both minimalistic and environmentally friendly, I have come across the act of… *cue dramatic music*…traveling.
And you know what? It’s a big adjustment. I’ve found that if you’re not prepared, than it’s certainly not convenient to be minimalistic or eco-friendly. You’ll want to use plastic straws, styrofoam, utensils, and other one-use items because they are convenient. And if you’re like me, you’ll feel guilty and sickened by every item you have to throw out to be transported to a landfill. No good.
But hey! Here’s some good news- it’s not difficult to prepare yourself. I repeat, it’s not difficult! All it requires is an interest to be less wasteful, and a willingness to change how you think about how to pack and reuse everyday items.
So after flying to New York City, Chicago and Orlando, then road tripping through the country, from coast-to-coast, all in 3 months, I’ve put together a list of essential items that will make your suitcase, and your conscious, lighter.
The items I have found to be the most useful are:
The Essential 11
- Dr. Bronner’s Soap
- To-Go Ware
- Reusable Water Bottle
- Foldable, Convenient Grocery Bag
- Reusable Coffee Mug/Tin (For the coffee shop frequenters)
- Collapsable bowl or tupperware
- SilverTech socks and underwear. The technology allows for multiple day wear before washing!
- Unbound Merino- You can wear these shirts for 30 days straight without washing! Seriously! (Currently just for men- women’s line is coming soon!)
- Menstrual Cup (for the ladies- no tampon waste or storage- yay!)
- Reusable Organic Cotton Pads (Wiping Witch Hazel across your face is a great way to freshen up if running water isn’t close by!)
- Multi-use Zip Bags- I bought some that can actually go in the dishwasher or be washed by hand.
These are all incredibly useful items that I have taken full advantage on while traveling for work, outdoor activities, & on-set days. While it may seem like extra work- these small changes will amount to so much less waste, a more purposeful suitcase, and a sense of preparation that will have you ready for anything.
I plan to write soon about my favorite products of each type- so stay tuned!
And until you’ve secured all of these items, you can still be eco-friendly by:
- buying produce that doesn’t come in plastic packaging
- asking for no straws! Just go without!
- Don’t buy new things until what you already have is completely used up or worn through!
- Buy solid shampoo, conditioner & soap from companies that don’t have packaging!
And last but not least- thanks for being interested in improving your life and the life around you, too. In order to make change in the world, we need to change the way we produce, interact with, and dispose of daily items. I’d love to hear what your favorite tips and tricks are, too!