Zero waste living is becoming a real movement. And while zero waste can seem near impossible with kids, “low waste” is definitely not. Many people around us try to do their part to protect the planet, with zero- (or low-) waste living being one of them. Have you ever tried it? A sustainable lifestyle offers a lot of benefits, from saving money to improving health and contributing to reducing the adverse impact on planet earth. While practice makes perfect, living a zero-waste life with a baby can be chaotic. But it is not an impossible task. With time and a good plan, zero waste living with a baby can be simplified.
Here are some easy tips!
Use reusable nappies instead of disposable ones: Disposable nappies can make your life a little easier. But if you are planning on a zero-waste lifestyle with a baby, then replace disposable with reusable nappies. Disposable diapers do not break down easily or quickly in landfills, and can also create toxic runoff. Cloth nappies on the other hand are eco-friendly. They are easily available in the market and can be used many many times. They are cheaper as well! You may also replace disposable swim nappies with reusable swim nappies.
Reusable wipes are a great replacement for wipes: Did you know, that a bamboo or cotton cloth dipped in warm water offers the same results as a disposable wipe does? But the chemicals in a disposable wipe can be harmful to your baby's skin. So instead, you can use warm water, mild soap (or a drop of essential oil), and a damp reusable cloth. You can also buy reusable wipes that are specially made to protect your baby’s delicate skin.
Look for skin-care products that contribute to zero-waste: Most skin care products that are natural come in plastic containers. Fortunately, there are several products at home that you can use such as olive oil or coconut oil to moisturize the skin, and also to treat diaper rash. These products can be bought in a glass container. In addition, using fewer natural products on your baby's delicate skin is a far better option than using various skin-care products.
Invest in used clothes: Babies grow faster than the blink of an eye. The dress you bought today may not fit right a fortnight later. Instead of wasting money on clothes that may be used once or twice, invest in used clothes. You may buy or borrow clothes from your family and friends, or buy them online. Most of the clothes are usually in near good condition.
Make your baby food at home: Parents spend several dollars on fruit and vegetable purees specially made for babies. These organic products are priced high as they are packed and shipped from different locations. While pureed fruits and vegetables offer all the vital nutrients your baby needs, you can make them at home instead of buying them. You may make a large batch and store it in a freezer-safe container, or prepare them fresh as and when needed. Preparing them at home reduces the resources used to pack the baby food, as well as the cost of shipment.
Choose eco-friendly toys: The tip may not be justifiable. Rather, 'choose your baby toys carefully' may be the right use of words. While eco-friendly toys are the best to buy, they come packed in plastic covers and boxes that speak against zero waste living. Look for toys that are available without packaging, such as at a fair. Or again, choose second hand. Furthermore, babies do not need more toys. It would be ideal not to waste time buying plastic toys that break easily and are dumped in the trash. Better prioritize quality instead of quantity.
Gadgets don’t make your life easy: One of the worst mistakes parents make is the use of gadgets to make life easier. Yes! Gadgets do make your life a breeze, but these expensive plastic gadgets that promise to entertain your child while making your life easy are not necessary. Germ-killing humidifiers, fancy baby monitors, and chargeable swings among others just add to your credit card bill. If you don't buy them, you won't miss them, simple!
In addition, you may also consider breastfeeding instead of bottle-feeding your baby, ask family and friends for practical gifts instead of those that go against zero-waste living with a baby, and reuse what you can. Remember, it may be difficult, but it's not impossible.