As of 2018, there are roughly 127.59 million households in the United States according to Statista, and each of these households can either help or hurt our planet. Here are some suggestions to make your home more eco-friendly.
It’s not wet paint to worry about
For homes built after 1978, federal law ensures the paint in your home doesn’t contain lead, but that’s not the only toxin to keep an eye out for. Some paints have Volatile Organic Compounds which are low-level toxic emissions that result in symptoms such as headaches and dizziness that often come after applying that fresh coat of paint, according to Katherine Englishman’s article on The Good Trade. There are three better health requirements GreenAmerica.org encourages consumers to meet: low VOCs, low biocides, and natural pigments. Some eco-friendly options include paint from The Real Milk Paint Co. as well as Benjamin Moore Natura.
Invest in ENERGY STAR
These four classic home appliances — clothes washer, clothes dryer, dishwasher, refrigerator — are also an opportunity to upgrade energy efficiency. While ENERGY STAR appliances do come at a higher price, they’ll not only save money in the long run, but also use less energy and are more efficient, according to EnergySage.com. Another quick tip about appliances — place your refrigerator in a shady spot. When your refrigerator is in the sunlight, the natural heat will force your fridge to work harder. Be conscious about not only what certification your appliances have, but also where you place your appliances.
Be mindful of your furniture
One of the best ways to be eco-friendly is to re-use. Instead of opting for a whole new furniture set off the showroom, consider buying second-hand and perhaps re-upholstering. Other options to look into is buying furniture whose materials are certified sustainable wood, made with recycled materials, or bamboo, according to the YLiving blog. Just like with paints, also look for low toxicity in the materials you’re purchasing.
Through the power of photosynthesis, plants have the amazing ability to transform our carbon dioxide into much needed oxygen. What better way to help put more oxygen into the air than growing a few plants ourselves? The New Ecologist offers a list of 10 plants such as African violets and peace lilies that can help spruce up your home both on the inside and outside. A blog post from Tinycaravan also offers five more houseplants that can help increase eco-friendliness.
Hygiene is important and is an aspect of our lives that we can adjust to make more eco-friendly. For example, try searching for and using products that don’t use palm oil. The demand for palm oil has led to the rapid deforestation that misplaces orangutans, which is why companies such as AXIOLOGY strays from using palm oil in their products, according to Zoe Dubs’ article on Elle. Be aware of the contents of your beauty products and where the ingredients of your products come from to help support more sustainable practices.
Small changes make big differences, and so don’t stop looking for ways to make your home more eco-friendly. Jessica Anderson from Huffington Post has also compiled a list of 50 ways to make your home more eco-friendly, with habits organized by location from your bathroom to your bedroom. Take a green step forward to help show our planet the care it needs.