Happy Earth Day: Five green actions we can all take

The beauty of Earth Day is that it allows me to stop and reflect on what I can do in my own life to make the planet a better place. More importantly, it causes me to pause and ask myself two questions: What am I teaching my kids about being more eco-friendly? What stops us as individuals from believing that we can make a difference?

One of the hurdles are that we tend to think that being ‘green’ as the expensive alternative, however it is a wonderful way to rediscover what our (grand) parents have always known — simple changes in our daily living don’t involve the unnecessary consumption of new materials, waste energy or add to landfills.

Here are five easy, green alternatives that save you time and/or money while keeping your family looking great.

1) Go easy on the detergent. Even without high-efficiency washers, you don’t need a lot of detergent. Using too much detergent clogs up the fabric and, ironically, the residue left on your clothes attracts and holds onto dirt. I recommend a detergent that is free of phosphates and other unnecessary
ingredients.

2) Love the color of that new blouse? Wash in cold water and cut your energy usage. Hot water makes color fade more quickly. Many women know this rule because it’s true for hair color, too. Unless you’ve got serious contamination on your hands (read: bodily fluids or the like), it’s not
necessary and causes your clothes to show wear quicker.

3) Don’t use the dryer unless you have to. And when you do, use the Low or Delicate setting. Heat causes clothes to fade, and also shrink. And when you do put things in the dryer, don’t overstuff it. It causes more wear and tear on your dryer but also more friction and rubbing/wear on your clothes.

4) Get creative with outgrown clothes. 

5) Rediscover resale. Whether you shop online, your local consignment shop or trade with your friends, kids outgrow their clothes so quickly. Passing them along to another family is one of the best things you can do to save money and save the planet.

These simple changes are easy and just take a little bit of awareness to implement. And you’ll save time, save money and save the planet—which is perfect for Earth Day and every day.


--Baby Center

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