Going Zero Waste – 20 Ideas for Consumers

Going Zero Waste

There isn’t a magic formula to go zero waste, it’s all about being creative and shopping wisely.

That said, there are some cool ideas you could try!

As a consumer, you just have to pay attention to the things you buy and throw away. 

Although some people think that having a zero waste lifestyle is expensive, it can save you money in the long run!
Additionally, it isn’t a difficult habit.

If you don’t know how to start, below you will find 20 easy ideas to become a conscious consumer and achieve your zero waste goals!

become a conscious consumers

 20 Ideas to become a conscious consumers

  1. Replace Disposable Items with Reusable Options

Take a look at the disposable items you usually waste and start replacing them with reusable and durable alternatives.

But more importantly, try to avoid single-use plastics like straws, bags, cups, and bottles at all costs.

For example, instead of buying several plastic water bottles each week, invest in a reusable bottle that will last for years!

You can also replace other disposable items, like plastic food bags for zero waste packed lunch boxes, batteries, cotton pads, and more.

  2.  Prefer Compostable Alternatives

There are some disposable items you can’t avoid.

For example, you will need to discard your toothbrush after a few months of use, whether it’s a plastic one or not. For those products, a better idea is to choose compostable materials.

You can use bamboo toothbrushes, biodegradable sponges, bamboo plasters, and many other products to compost at home. 

Give Second-hand Stores a Try
Give Second-hand Stores a Try

  3.  Give Second-hand Stores a Try

Do you need to buy something? You probably don’t need it to be completely new.

Buying second-hand products is a great idea to reuse useful items that otherwise would end up as waste.

Besides, you can find unique things!

  4.  Prepare a Zero Waste Kit

One of the most common mistakes of zero waste consumers is forgetting their reusable products at home when going out.

A great idea to prevent this is to carry a zero waste kit with you every time you go out. 

You can include items that will help you avoid waste on the go, like a travel mug, reusable cutlery, a bamboo straw, and others!

  5.  Go Paperless

Another good zero waste idea is to reduce the amount of paper you usually discard.

You can refuse to accept promotional brochures, ask for no receipts when possible, replace tissues with handkerchieves, use cloth napkins, and so on!

Repair Damaged Items Saves Money
Repair Damaged Items Saves Money

  6.  Repair Damaged Items 

When something breaks or is in bad condition, most people would buy a new item to replace it.

But a better zero waste option would be trying to repair it first. If you can’t repair something on your own, find someone who can help you. For example, tailors, cobblers, carpenters, and others!

  7.  Donate Things You Won’t Use Any More

If you have items that you won’t use any more and they’re in good condition, donate them instead of sending them to landfills.

Remember that other people might find them useful.

With this idea, you will support a market where nothing is wasted! 

Also, see this article about tips on shopping for secondhand fashion.

  8.  Buy Local Products

Keep in mind that goods transported over large distances require more energy and packaging than local products.

As a zero waste consumer, you should give locally made goods a try to reduce waste and support local businesses!

Prefer Loose Veggies and Fruits Reduces Plastic Waste
Prefer Loose Veggies and Fruits Reduces Plastic Waste

  9.  Prefer Loose Veggies and Fruits

Food packaging is the most problematic waste to avoid.

An easy idea to start cutting down on food packaging is choosing loose veggies and fruits instead of buying them wrapped in plastic.

  10.  Give Ugly Fruits and Veggies a Chance

If you want to fight food waste, you could start buying some “ugly” fruits and vegetables.

Think about how many people avoid them just because they don’t look perfect.

If nobody buys them, they will end up as waste! 

  11.  Store Your Food Properly to Prevent Food Waste

Once you get home from food shopping, make sure to store your food properly to avoid spoilage!

Separate foods that promote ripening, like bananas and tomatoes, from sensitive foods like apples and leafy greens!

Ask for Plastic-free Packaging
Ask for Plastic-free Packaging

  12  When Buying Online, Ask for Plastic-free Packaging

When possible, cut down on plastic packaging from online orders and ask for cardboard or paper instead.

If you can’t avoid plastics, a good zero waste idea is to reuse them.

  13.  Do Your Research to Avoid “Greenwashing”

Nowadays, there are many products labelled as “eco-friendly” or “natural” even though they’re harmful to the environment.

Before buying some of these products, find out what makes them better for the environment than other options & try not to be greenwashed.

  14.  Find Zero Waste Grocery Stores

Another great idea to cut down on food packaging is going to zero waste grocery stores near you.

You can bring your own containers and reusable bags to buy what you need! 

Upcycle Old Fabrics
Upcycle Old Fabrics

  15.  Repurpose Old Fabrics

If you have some old sheets or clothes, consider using them as rags or turning them into produce bags.

With this simple action, you will reduce waste and you could even save money!

  16.  Prepare Your Food

Ordering takeaway is an easy solution to avoid cooking. Yet, it’s unhealthy and creates too much waste.

You could skip takeaway some days and prepare healthy dishes at home instead!

  17.  Opt for Homemade Gifts

A fantastic idea to give some original gifts and reduce waste is getting creative with your skills.

You could gift some homemade cookies, poems, and so on!

New Experiences Doesn't Cost Anything
Enjoying New Experiences Doesn’t Cost Anything

  18  Choose Experiences Over Things

Enjoying new experiences is more zero waste than buying and accumulating things you won’t use.

Stop buying meaningless things so that you can go to a concert, travel to another city, or any other!

  19.  Before Buying Something, Make Sure You Truly Need It

As a zero waste consumer, you should always avoid buying impulsively.

Think twice before buying something. Do you really need it?

Will you use it more than once? 

  20.  Don’t forget Your Reusable Bags 

Finally, put your reusable bags near your keys so that you never forget to take them with you when going shopping! 


Now it’s time to put into practice some of these easy zero waste ideas in your daily life! and if you want to learn more tips on saving money read this article 15 Essential Tips to Eat Well for Less.


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    Dedicated to the cause of sustainability and eco-friendliness, our mission is to raise awareness about the importance of eco-conscious living.

    We firmly believe that individual actions can spark collective change and recognise the need for sustainable living to be tailored to your unique circumstances and pace.

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