Zero-Waste Lifestyle Is Expensive? Here are 6 Solutions Without Buying Anything
Is your goal in life to live a more sustainable lifestyle that's focused on being as waste-free as possible?
But, you might be wondering how much it actually costs to go zero waste?
And if it’s too pricey for you to do?
Worry no more!
It really doesn’t have to be.
Zero waste is about buying less and saving money.
The good news is, plenty of things that lead to living with zero waste can be done for free!
Yes, you heard it right…”no spend required.”
Here’s how you can embrace a zero-waste lifestyle without buying anything.
1. Creative ways to use food scraps
Food waste is a serious issue.
With so much food that we throw away, we’re all guilty that we just don’t know how to use it.
So to help you with creative ideas to use up your food scraps…
For example, just throw your vegetable scraps into a bag.
Put it in the freezer until you have enough for a batch of broth.
Then freeze broth in small portions for making the best soups and sauces EVER!
2. DIY cleaning materials
If you are looking to clean sustainably and on a budget, your best option is to make your own cleaning materials.
So there’s no need to buy cleaning cloths, wipes, rags, paper towels or tissues.
You can simply repurpose old fabric that you previously have recycled as rags.
For example, your old towels, bedding, T-shirts, work shirts… or even underpants.
3. Compost your food waste for Free
Setting up a compost bin doesn’t have to cost money.
Bins and buckets that are required for these things are often given away for free or second-hand.
And most community gardens or people with worm farms will give you a handful of composting worms for free to get you going.
A type of composting system I want to recommend is bokashi composting.
What I like about it is that it really handles all the kitchen waste in your house.
Bokashi composting efficiently handles all food wastes, even meats, and dairy, in as little as four weeks.
It is a two-stage process.
In stage one scraps are fermented or pickled.
In stage two they should be buried in a shallow hole.
4. Borrow as a first option before buying
Do you often buy things that you really don’t need?
Well, sometimes we tend to buy things that are unnecessary.
And we often get tempted to buy everything because of the result that it offers.
For instance, when you need a hole in the wall…
You don’t need to buy a drill right away.
You can ask your friends, family, or neighbors if they can lend you the thing that you need.
5. Glass Jar as an alternative storage
Glass jars are your zero waste friend!
And even better, they are free!
So, what you can do right now is to stop recycling your glass jars.
Then save them for re-use.
One idea for you to do it, you can rescue glass jars out of your friend’s recycling bin.
Or from cafe and restaurant recycling bins.
Once you have your collection of glass jars, use them for everything!
You can take it to the bulk store to buy ingredients without packaging if this is an option for you.
And can be used for food storage.
Like taking lunch to work, organizing your pantry, storing leftovers in the fridge, and even in the freezer.
6. Line Your Bin (without buying anything)
There is completely no need to buy bin liners.
Depending on the size of your bin…
Or what you put in it and how often you fill it.
There are plenty of zero waste solutions that don’t cost a penny.
You can use an old newspaper to line your bin.
It depends also on how much wet and stinky stuff goes in your bin.
You could use an old pillowcase, a cardboard box, or do away with any kind of liner altogether.
If you create a lot of waste, consider separating it into “wet” and “dry”
That way you can use one of these ideas for the dry stuff, and keep the plastic liners for the wet only, to make them go further.
Choosing to live zero waste might seem overwhelming.
And possibly an expensive task to undertake.
But in reality, it really doesn’t have to be either of these things.
Actually, it’s probably more tiring and costly to live in a way that produces waste.
It’s because it can lead to a cluttered home…
And result in you having to buy more cheap items that don’t last long.
So for greater sustainability…
A greater part of zero waste living is changing how you view things.
This includes being smarter with your choices and asking the question,
‘How can I use this again?’ (for example when faced with products that you’d ordinarily throw away.)
By doing this, a zero-waste lifestyle becomes something that benefits your life, and your wallet, in a big way.
Now we’d love to hear from you! Are you new to zero waste and overwhelmed at all the stuff you think you need to buy? What no-spend zero waste tips would you add? Any other thoughts? Please leave a comment below!