5 questions to ask yourselfWiebke Venter
As you may know, in light of the long journey we have had, living amongst the pandemic and all its ups and downs, we have felt it’s time to temporarily close The Re-Store and take some time for ourselves. However, we will be reopening in June with all your Re-Store favourites. Nevertheless, we don’t want to leave you hanging in this time. We have put together a few questions to ask yourself that will help you to stay on track with an Earth-conscious lifestyle and keep up until we’re back!
Do I really need that?
Saying “no” is very important when following an Earth-conscious lifestyle. We are constantly surrounded by the temptation of buying more. You can start by getting into the habit of bringing your own reusable shopping bags so that you can learn to refuse plastic bags at the till. Say “no” to things such as pamphlets, flyers, business cards or maps when offered to you, rather take a photo using your phone. Where possible, avoid disposables in general and aim for things you can reuse. The more we accept and purchase freebies and disposables, the higher the demand for it grows. Every purchase we make is either a vote for or against single-use plastic.
Rethink your needs so that you can avoid making impulsive buying decisions. Otherwise, you end up with more items that will only clutter your home.
Does this spark joy?
Keeping your home decluttered can help to stay conscious about wasteful living and over-consumption. Just keep and consume what you really need to keep your space and mind healthy. A good way to sort out your home is to ask yourself: “Does this spark joy?”. This way you can only keep what really makes you happy (or you actually really need). We all have these items at home that seem too good to throw away, but we never really use them either. Each of which had to be produced at one point and has now become a waste of resources, because they are just lying around in our homes. When decluttering, donate or sell them. This way, someone else can reuse your things instead of buying new products, which would, ultimately, use more of our resources.
What´s the true cost?
Disposables can be quite costly because we buy and throw them away, over and over again. If you really think about it, you’re not just throwing them away, you are actually disposing your money too, when there are so many healthier and smarter alternatives for reusing that you can invest in. They may be a bit more expensive than disposables but considering the time of use, it can be a huge relief for your wallet in the long run.
Here are just some examples (linking):
- Cotton rounds – reusable cotton rounds
- Paper towels – hemp or cotton cloths
- Dish sponge – hemp dish scrubbie, hemp dish cloth,
- Tin foil/ cling film – put it in a food container or stasher bag, or wrap it in wax wraps or use bowl covers
- Paper bags/ plastic bags – bring your own linen bag
- Bottled water – a good quality glass or stainless-steel water bottle l and tap water
Another important question in the bigger picture is “What is the true cost of plastic?” It might be cheap now, but it ends up costing the earth. Everything is flooded with single-used plastic items. With that comes micro-plastics entering the food chain and contaminating the earth, costing our health and the health of eco-systems. Also, bear in mind, there are reasons why products in plastic are cheaper. Depending on the type of plastic, a kg of virgin raw material costs cents and it’s much cheaper to produce new products than recycling old ones. Isn´t it worth it to invest a few more Rands into our future?
Can I do it myself?
There are endless ideas online of what you can “do-it-yourself” at home, be it food-related or bathroom-related or décor-related. DIY is always better: You know what is in there and it can be more affordable to buy a few simple ingredients. Here are just a few ideas to spark you creativity:
- Mix a delicious smoothie with fruits, vegetables, liquids and superfoods you have at home. The magical formula is: 1 cup liquid (almond milk, coconut milk, coconut water, juice, milk, water, yoghurt) + 1 cup fruits (apple, banana, grapes, mango, orange, peach, pear, pineapple) + any extras you’d like (oats, chia seeds, flaxseeds/flax powder, hemp seeds, cashews, walnuts, leafy greens for a green smoothie). Enjoy!
- Bake bread without yeast: 500 g flour, 16 g baking powder, 380 ml water, 1-2 tsp. salt, 2 tbsp. olive oil. Bake it for 40 min. at 200 °C. Optional you can add 2 tbsp of your favourite seeds.
- Make a spread for your bread: Hummus, vegan spreads with pulses, new mixtures of cream cheese…get creative!
- Prepare your own all-purpose cleaner: Put the peel of an orange or two lemons in a 500 ml glass jar, fill it up with vinegar, close it and let it rest for 2 weeks. With that cleaner you are ready to make a proper spring clean in autumn, both environment friendly and package free :)
- Make your own face and body scrub: Mix some olive oil with sugar and rub the stress off!
What´s the better choice? (- not the perfect choice)
When it comes to grocery, cosmetics and homeware shopping, we always recommend to shop at local farmers and craft markets or at small local stores. We often find that larger supermarkets and franchise shops have a lot of packaging. Farmers and local shops are usually more open to individual solutions like filling containers. Refer glass and aluminium tins to plastic containers, as they can be recycled easier. Ride a bike or walk instead of taking the car. Just keep asking yourself: “What is a better choice?”. There is not the perfect way to live a zero-waste lifestyle, however as long as you aim for making better choices; you are making a huge impact.
We thank you so much for your support in the past two years and your effort to change the world and make it a little greener. We hope to see you soon in our shop. Also check out our ‘MARCH MADNESS’ Clearance Sale, that we are running until we are closing on the 10th of April. We’re giving you the opportunity to receive up to 60% OFF site wide on products that are definitely a better choice.