Sustainable Haus Mercantile - 2021 New Year’s Challenge and Giveaway

#BringItOnSH

Copyright Sustainable Haus Mercantile                   

This guide is a great way to think about being more sustainable, step by step. Try one or two of our ideas each month or think of your own. Want to make a bigger difference? Share with a friend and take the challenge together. Post a monthly picture to Instagram with the hashtag #BringItOnSH and be eligible for a year end giveaway (think large gift basket of our favorite sustainable solutions – more to come on this but follow us on Instagram for details. Are you just reading this and it’s after January or did you miss a month? 12 changes, and 12 pictures before year end will still leave you eligible, but they must be posted with the hashtag.) 

If this is difficult to print and you'd like a PDF version, email us: Janette@sustainablehaus.com

 

January - Plastic Free Food Storage

 

Plastic food storage can be dangerous as it leaches chemicals into the food we eat and contributes to our consumption of microplastics.

  1. Switch from plastic food storage to glass or metal.

  2. Purchase take out in sustainable packaging (recyclable pizza boxes or metal tins, sandwiches wrapped in paper, etc.).

  3. Participate in a CSA (January-May sign ups) or shop at a local farmers market bringing your own boxes/bags.

  4. Purchase food in sustainable packaging, e.g., buy mustard and ketchup in glass bottles, berries and eggs in cardboard cartons, bring your own container for fish/cheeses/meats, buy grains package free, etc.

  5. Plant a garden, or add edibles to your flower garden such as mint, basil and pumpkins.

  6. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

February - Plastic Free Drinkware

 

Plastic drinkware, like plastic food storage, is a major contributor to our consumption of microplastics and is incredibly dangerous to our bodies and to our planet.

  1. Carry a reusable water bottle.

  2. Drink from a reusable coffee/tea cup. 

  3. Buy liquids in glass rather than plastic or plastic-lined paper such as milk or juice in a glass bottle.  Avoid cardboard cartons and paper coffee cups, which are all lined in plastic. Also remember, heating plastics causes more chemical leaching. 

  4. Have your home water filtered. The Environmental Working Group website (www.ewg.org) rates the water of all towns so learn how good or bad your water is before investing in a filter so you can buy the right system.

  5. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

 

March - Sustainable Period Care - Women’s History Month

 

Period care has a big environmental impact - one pad has the same impact as four plastic bags. We believe in period care items that are accessible and eco-friendly as well as healthier for us. 

  1. Try a period cup, reusable pad, or period underwear.

  2. If uncomfortable or unable to use reusable products - consider purchasing applicator free tampons and plastic free pads made with organic cotton with minimal packaging. 

  3. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

 

April- Sustainable Spring Cleaning

 

Doing spring cleaning? Opt out of harsh chemicals and use natural cleaners or DIYs without plastic packaging. 

  1. Research ingredients and avoid products that contain toxic chemicals which permeate our air, water, and earth as well as reside in our homes. Why allow chemicals in your home that you wouldn’t want on your drinking water?

  2. Simple ingredients (such as vinegar which is great on windows and floors and baking soda for scouring sinks, tubs, pots and pans) can be used alone or in DIY cleaners. 

  3. Buy your toxic free cleaners’ package free to avoid single use plastics many of which are not recycled!

  4. Look up your current products on the Environmental Working Group website (www.ewg.org) to see how ingredients and products are rated. 

  5. Use reusable Wipes – there are many options, but cutting up old towels works just fine. 

  6. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

 

May - Be More Plant Based

 

Choosing plant-based foods and clothing significantly lessens your carbon footprint and encourages healthier habits. Plant based materials are biodegradable and are generally easily compostable.

  1. Eat more vegetables and make Mom happy!

  2. Switch to plant-based meals. Try starting with a small change - meatless Monday! 

  3. Reduce the purchase of synthetic clothing - which contributes to microplastic contamination of water and air through production and laundry. These microplastics end up in our food and our bodies. Our clothes touch our skin all day. Natural fabrics such as cotton, wool, and linen are compostable and breathable, comfortable and better for your health and the health of the planet. 

  4. Start a Compost Bin – this is a great time to do so. Don’t have a yard? Ask us for more options. 

  • At Sustainable Haus, we use mostly cotton thread which makes most of our products completely compostable at the end of life. An example of how small changes can have a big impact.

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

 

June - Shop Secondhand 

 

The environmental cost of producing clothing is enormous! Shopping secondhand for clothes, mending clothes you have, or doing clothing swaps is a great way to get a new wardrobe without harm to the environment. 

  1. Go thrifting, mend clothes, or do a clothing swap! 

  2. Buy basics that are long lasting and not susceptible to changes in trends. 

  3. Support sustainable brands and buy natural fabrics.

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

July - Sustainable Beauty

 

Ever thought about all that plastic packaging around makeup and beauty care? How about the ingredients in them? And what happens when you toss all that plastic away? DIY beauty tricks and environmentally conscious beauty companies help make the transition to more sustainable beauty easy and fun!

  1. Try a DIY beauty care project like making a body butter or scrub.

  2. Support sustainable brands that list ingredients. Be sure all ingredients are clean.

  3. Buy local beauty items with refillable packaging or returnable bottles.

  4. Look up your current products on the Environmental Working Group website (www.ewg.org) to see how ingredients and products are rated. 

  5. Stay clear of all undisclosed fragrances. 

  6. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

August - Sustainable Personal Care (Skin Care and Hygiene)

 

Personal care can be super wasteful and harmful to our health. Buying refillable personal care items, using DIY skin care, avoiding single use items, and finding multiple uses for products are all ways to be more environmentally conscious.

  1. Move towards reusable products, made without plastic e.g. safety razor, reusable swab, cotton handkerchiefs, compostable dental floss in refillable glass containers

  2. Support sustainable brands.

  3. Buy local beauty care with refillable packaging or returnable bottles.

  4. Look up your current products on the Environmental Working Group website (www.ewg.org) to see how ingredients and products are rated. 

  5. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

September - Sustainable Hair Care

 

Hair care can be tricky - with toxic ingredients and poor packaging, it’s often a huge source of waste and toxins. Make the switch to refillable hair care with natural ingredients or DIYs to help maintain healthy, beautiful hair without the environmental cost. 

  1. Try a shampoo/conditioner bar or refillable shampoo and conditioner to go package free, especially for children.

  2. Research ingredients and avoid sodium, sulfates and silicones.  Enjoy healthier hair that does not need daily washing. 

  3. Make a DIY hair mask or hot oil treatment.

  4. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

October - Reduce, Reduce, Reduce!

 

Getting cluttered? We often have more stuff than we really need. Being mindful about the “stuff” we let into our lives is a great way to reduce our carbon footprint and encourage a low-waste, simple, and mindful life.

  1. Donate clothes and household items you no longer wear to local charities. You can also sell things in good condition on various online, local platforms. 

  2. Buy used, repair what you have and trade with friends and family when you need something new. How many family members own a crick pot they’d be happy to give away? 

  3. Say no to promotional items and trial/sample items

  4. Consolidate products - instead of a morning and evening face cream, for example, try using one for both routines. 

  5. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

November - Kids and Baby

 

Kids and babies are more susceptible to plastic contamination due to their smaller size. It’s also important to teach children about sustainability and encourage healthy habits.

  1. Keep plastic away from children’s food and drink. Replace plastic bottles and sippy cups with ceramic, stainless, glass, enamelware and silicon. 

  2. Consider cloth diapers. 

  3. Consider children’s sleepwear and clothing and choose natural fibers when possible.

  4. Ready for bigger changes - consider mattress materials and bedding to be sure they are free of chemicals and synthetic fibers.

  5. Use only no VOC paint on the walls.

  6. Select toys without plastic or with less plastic. 

  7. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________

 

December – Larger Purchases and Home Furnishing

 

Many people don’t realize the environmental cost of large home purchases - like rugs, couches, and appliances. It’s important to do the research and become aware of the possible toxins in your home in order to make healthier, more sustainable choices.

  1. Consider reduce, reuse repurpose before buying new. Consider reupholstering or refinishing an existing piece. This also supports local artisans. 

  2. Select rugs made of cotton and/or wool.

  3. Use only no VOC paint on the walls.

  4. Buy furniture made of natural and sustainable materials. 

  5. Research larger purchases looking for more sustainable brands. This is true for cars, homes, appliances, gadgets, etc.

  6. Other _______________________________

 

Describe change made/picture posted: _____________________  Date Picture was posted  ____________________