You can easily green your morning routine starting today, well probably tomorrow unless you’re reading this before you get out of bed.
You don’t need any special products to get started, just a few little changes to your current routine and then we can think about longer term changes.
Once you tackle the easy things, there are a few simple changes you can make for the longer term.
In the Bathroom
This is where the day starts and your easy green efforts begin. You’re probably already doing many of these things so awesome job!
According to the EPA, 50% of indoor water use is in the bathroom!?! The most eco friendly thing you can do in the bathroom is reduce the water usage.
By fixing leaks and swapping out old toilets, faucets, and shower heads, for more efficient ones, you can save around $500 per year in water and electricity costs.
Going Green at the Sink
Use a pea size amount of toothpaste. That’s all you need and young children need even less, a rice grain size amount. A quick Google search will show that’s the recommended amount and that most of us are totally over doing it.
Turn off the water while brushing your teeth. Letting the water run while you brush your teeth is just like watching money go down the drain. According to the EPA, turning off the water while brushing teeth can save 8 gallons of water – that’s per person, per teeth brushing session.
Turn off the water while shaving (for the dudes). Tell the dude in your life to turn off the water while shaving. It can save 10 gallons of water per shave.
Cotton balls/makeup sponges/facial pads – cut these in half until you can swap out the single use variety for a reusable version.
Going Green in the Shower
Lower the water temperature – the standard water temperature is 140 degrees Fahrenheit, try lowering it to 120 and save some money. Hot water can be drying to your skin, which is already drier in the winter.
Shorten your shower – I know it’s hard, especially in the winter but hop in, do your stuff and hop out. Use less water and save money. According to the EPA, we use 2.1 gallons of water every minute of the shower.
Turn lights off – it’s easy to forget but get into the habit of turning off the lights when you leave the room. I’m still working on this with my teenager.
If you’re really ready to green your morning routine, grab my free Cleaning Out the Chemicals workbook so you can make sure the products you’re currently using are ‘green’.
Green Your Morning Routine for the Long Term
I will be the first to admit that I don’t do all these things I have listed. We are all on a journey to a greener life so do what you can as you are able.
We don’t need to do everything perfectly, we just need to do something.
Probably the biggest impact you can make is to identify any water leaks and fix those. According to the EPA, 5-10% of US households have easy-to-fix leaks that result in 90+ gallons of water lost per day.
Be conscious of product packaging. Take an inventory of the products you have, is the packaging recyclable or super low waste?
If it is, awesome!
If it isn’t, can you buy a different brand that uses less packaging or recyclable packaging?
Pro tip: keep a bin or bag in the bathroom to put all the recyclables in. This will make recycling easier and you’ll be less apt to throw it in the trash.
At the Bathroom Sink
Swap single use products for sustainable alternatives
Foaming Soap Pumps – swap the single use soap dispensers for a reusable foaming soap pump. They use less product which saves you money. We use the dispensers and soap tablets from Blueland and really like them.
In the Shower
Low flow shower head – investing in a low flow shower head not only saves water (40% or more) but saves you money, both on your water bill and your energy bill. Using less energy also cuts down on CO2 emissions.
PVC free shower curtain – the package will be labeled PVC or vinyl. PVC is a type of plastic that’s flexible but also full of chemicals like phthalates that can cause nausea and damage to the liver and reproductive system.
Shampoo and Conditioner – my Cleanout the Chemicals workbook (see above) will help you identify eco-friendly brands.
Two options to reduce packaging waste are buying in bulk like I did here or switching to a shampoo bar. A few years ago I tried a couple different shampoo bars and didn’t like them at all. I may try again in the future.
We do like Earth Science shampoo, this jug should last a while – insert eye roll.
Toilet Spray – swap out toilet sprays that are made with harmful chemicals to one that is made with essential oils
Toilet Paper – swap to a toilet paper that is sustainably made like Who Gives a Crap. Read my honest review of Who Gives a Crap toilet paper.
Toilet Tank – fill a plastic jug with rocks and put it in the toilet tank. This reduces the amount of water used.
And finally, why not add a houseplant in the bathroom? Houseplants add a nice visual element but more importantly, are helpful for improving indoor air quality.
RELATED: Tips to Improve Indoor Air Quality
I am fascinated by some of the statistics I learned while researching more about how to green your morning routine.
The EPA’s WaterSense website has so much eye-opening information on water use and how to conserve water.
Comment below with the next thing you’re going to do to green your morning routine.