5 Best Green Products for Everyday Use

Green Products for Everyday Use

If you know anything about environmental hazards, you’ll know that a major contribution to environmental damage comes from families and homeowners. If you look closely, you’ll find that the plastic cutlery, latest apps to achieve financial goals, lead-based items, microbeads-containing cosmetics, and a variety of other materials in your house do more harm than good. Check the best green products for everyday use below.

Sure, they may be cheap and efficient, but that doesn’t outweigh their long-term environmental consequences. But what if you decide to go eco-friendly? Will you still have all the gadgets? 

Sure, you will? In fact, you’ll even find better alternatives for the current gadgets you use. Here are some of the best green gadgets that can bring down your negative environmental impact:

1. Sodastream Fizzi Sparkling Water Maker

Each day, millions of plastic bottles end up in landfills, roadside dumpsters, on seashores, and often inside the tummy of large marine animals. So, the next time you feel the urge to buy a bottle of sparkling water, just hold yourself back and go for the Sodastream Sparkling Water Maker instead! 

With returnable and recyclable CO2 cylinders and a BPA-free design, you can stir up a bottle of sparkling water right at home. Not only is this environmentally friendly, but it’s also way cheaper than buying readymade sparkling water each time!

2. Philips Hue Bulbs

Harsh, yellow light bulbs are old news. Instead of investing in these energy wasters, you can look for high-quality LED bulbs, such as these Philips Hue Bulbs. 

Besides consuming lesser energy, these bulbs also:

  • Avoid heating up the room
  • Give a much brighter light
  • Last longer
  • Reduce electricity bills
  • Are available in changing colors

3. Rachio 3 Smart Sprinkler Controller

Most sprinkler systems today are automatic or semi-automatic but still consume a lot of water. But what if you have an intelligent sprinkler system? What if your system takes care of all the adjustments on its own when you’re busy or away from home?

The Rachio Sprinkler Controller takes web-based weather updates and predictions and adjusts water requirements and distribution without needing any intervention from you. Talk about convenience!

4. Google Nest Thermostat

Google has one of the smartest and easiest-to-use Wi-Fi programmable thermostats for home use. It can work with Alexa and is programmable remotely as well.

The Google Nest Thermostat has Energy Star certification, which means it functions according to some pretty stellar energy-conservation standards. The thermostat:

  • Comes with a remote control
  • Turns itself down whenever you’re away
  • Has a Savings Finder to help you tighten up your energy expenditure as cleverly as possible
  • Sends red alerts to notify if something’s wrong in your HVAC system

5. Force of Nature Non-Toxic All-Purpose Cleaner

Phenyls and acids and bleaches, and commercial grade cleaners lead to the eventual destruction of your home’s environment. They’re too harsh and chemically active, so families looking for a safer and eco-friendly option can turn to Force of Nature’s fantastic solution!

This gadget creates electrolyzed solution from vinegar, salt, and water within no time and gives you the perfect all-purpose cleaner with zero toxic additives.

Final Words

Shifting to eco-friendly gadgets can be really dicey. You have to research well before investing in such a different lifestyle. However, these top five picks are some of the most trusted and widely used green products for everyday use, so you can use them without any difficulties!

How to Sell Stuff Online Fast

How to Sell Stuff Online Fast

Whether you’re trying to get out of debt or boost your investment income for retirement, one of the best ways to achieve these goals is to sell items you no longer need.  Thanks to the Internet, it’s even easier to sell things online.  You’ll need to research which platforms would be the best and that would give you the most decent profits.  Make sure your items are in good or excellent condition, and you should research the average prices of what you’re selling so that you’re not overcharging but still charging enough to earn a profit.  Here are some cool ways to sell items online fast.

eBay

This is one of the best ways to sell things online, and here are a few tips on getting sales quicker on this platform.  Start by including as many details as possible on the items you’re selling.  By doing this, the buyer won’t have as many questions, which speeds up the ability to earn profits faster.  Use the Best Offer feature on your listings since this helps buyers who want to negotiate.  Offer multiple payment options and avoid auction-style listings. Take high-quality pictures of your items.

Consider Which Items Sell the Best

Don’t waste time selling items that people will not want.  It is better to research which items are the most popular among certain demographics and budget levels.  This helps you sell items faster online.  Brand-name clothing is always popular with online shoppers, and if you have outfits from the most popular designers, you’re likely to sell faster.  Other items that do well for online sellers include video games, electronic gadgets, kids’ clothing, furniture, toys, and sports equipment.

Use the Decluttr App

If you have a lot of gadgets that are in good condition, sell them through the Decluttr app.  All you have to do is look up the devices you want to sell then enter the barcodes in the app.  Then the app lets you know the overall value of your items and how much they’ll offer for your items.  After you accept the offer, they’ll send you a shipping label and you can pack up your items for shipping to them.

Try Facebook Marketplace

This is a neat way to sell items fast online.  Start by taking pictures of a certain type of item and then post the pictures and information to Facebook groups that sell specific types of items such as used books or used kids’ clothing.  It would be quicker to sell if you can do it locally and have the person meet you in a public place to pick up the items.  However, you have the option of shipping your items for a 5% selling fee.  

Customer Service Should Be on Point

Be sure to answer potential customers’ questions promptly as this helps you sell items faster.  Be concise with the information in your listings and the pictures should be clear enough for everyone to see.  Make sure the items are priced fairly and exhibit a professional attitude at all times. Offer products that promote sustainable lifestyle.

These strategies will be helpful in selling your items faster online.

6 Tips for Buying and Enjoying Sustainable Coffee

Sustainable Coffee

Coffee is a wonderful drink that is highly valued all across the globe, and that has been enjoyed for centuries. The history of coffee is rich and full of interesting developments. More recently, folks have become more concerned than ever about purchasing and enjoying coffee in the most sustainable ways possible.

Keep on reading for some ideas on how to buy and enjoy coffee sustainably.

Do Some Research

Coffee is considered to be sustainable if the growing, harvesting, roasting and selling of the coffee product is invested in:

  • Conserving nature
  • Improving the livelihoods of its growers
  • Sustaining the supply of coffee
  • Strengthening the demand for coffee

Doing a deep dive into your favorite coffee brands, and investigating things like where they source their coffee, how they reciprocate the community for it, and how they package and sell their coffee is an important part in buying sustainable coffee. It is a healthy habit to know more.

Connect with Local Roasters

Local roasters are the best place to start your coffee journey. Like with fruits and vegetables, coffee is often higher quality and more sustainable when you buy closer to home.

Plus, you can get a much better idea of where the coffee is coming from by speaking directly to the experts at your local roastery. They can tell you about how they source the beans, and the relationships they have with their suppliers.

Check the Label

Labels can tell you a lot. Especially the labels on coffee. Labels on the side of your coffee can tell you if its organic, fair trade, or if the bag itself is made from recycled materials.

If you are concerned about the sustainability practices of the coffee brand you like to drink, or lack thereof, then perusing the labels, and the significance of the labels, can tell you a lot.

Avoid Big Brands

As with agriculture, the bigger the brand, the more likely that the coffee comes from less sustainable practices.

Smaller brands and independent coffee roasters have smaller footprints. They take up less space, spend less money and energy, and create fewer outputs. They tend to pay their people more, source their coffee more equitably, and be more concerned for the natural environment.

Use a Plastic-Free Coffee Maker

Keurig coffee machines, and other single-serve brewers, are far from sustainable. They rely on single use plastic pods to brew small batches of coffee. Millions of these pods end up in landfills every year.

Yes, it may be true that single-serve brewers use less water and consume less electricity. But they are notorious for producing a lot of plastic waste.

If you must rely on a single-use brewer, it’s worth looking into recyclable pods, compostable pods, and reusable pods. Cleaning your coffee maker right is also important. However, even the solutions to the original K-cup problem have their setbacks.

Compost Your Grounds

Coffee grounds make excellent compost. Even most coffee filters can be composted. By adding your used grounds to the compost pile, or fertilizing your plants directly, you can sustain the usefulness of coffee.

Coffee grounds in soil is good for:

  • Adding aeration
  • Increasing organic matter content
  • Retaining more water
  • Enhancing drainage

From your cup, to the compost, it is possible to purchase and enjoy coffee in sustainable ways. By following some tips from above, and investing in reputable coffee brands, you can be a part of the solution that helps keep quality coffee around forever.

4 Sustainable Lifestyle Changes That Save You Money

Sustainable Lifestyle

Everyone wants to have a positive impact on the world, but sometimes it feels like living a sustainable lifestyle is only for the wealthy. But the ads you see for expensive “green” products or organic produce don’t tell the whole story.

They don’t even tell the best story. The most effective sustainable lifestyle changes are free and save money in the long run.

Reduce Food Waste

Keep an eye on what you’re throwing away. 165 billion pounds of food are thrown away in the United States each year. That food represents meals that could have fed hungry families and has a significant environmental impact.

Energy and water are used to produce food, even if it isn’t eaten. Wasted food is wasted resources. Discarded food goes into landfills and produces 34% of emissions of the greenhouse gas methane in the U.S.

The solution is to buy what you need and eat what you buy. Finish up those leftovers and keep an eye on your produce so it doesn’t go bad.

Reduce Energy Consumption

Decreasing the amount of energy you use during a regular day is remarkably quick and easy. Each of these small things contributes to sustainability and saves money.

  • Turn down the thermostat. A reduction of even one degree can reduce your heating costs by 10%
  • Turn off unused lights and appliances
  • Don’t use your dryer for every load of laundry—air-dry clothes instead
  • Walk or ride your bike to do errands instead of driving
  • Turn off the water while you scrub your hands or brush your teeth
  • Take shorter showers
  • Turn down your water heater from 140 degrees to 120 degrees—most people won’t notice a difference and it saves both energy and money

Most people can make some, if not all, of these energy-saving changes. Living a sustainable lifestyle is a group effort and every change adds to the greater goal.

Reduce Plastic Use

Plastic pollution not only sits in landfills for centuries, but it also clogs waterways and devastates sea life. But you can reduce your contribution to the problem and become part of the solution by taking some relatively simple steps.

  • Do not use single-use plastic bags—carry compact reusable bags
  • Do not use plastic straws. This is not a political issue, it’s a simple way to reduce plastic pollution
  • Avoid products in plastic containers. This seems tricky, but simple things like using bar soap instead of liquid soap reduce plastic waste and save money
  • Carry reusable glass water bottles instead of buying bottled water

Reduce Consumption

Living a sustainable lifestyle means knowing when to reuse, repurpose, swap, or borrow instead of buying new things that add to the planet’s collective clutter.

Use your local library. Buy clothing and other household goods used at local thrift shops and yard sales. Borrow and lend tools and infrequently used items. And finally, think before you buy. Saving money and saving the planet go hand in hand when you know how to live a sustainable lifestyle.

Related Reading: 4 Easy Ideas to Reduce Your Food Waste

How to Clean a Coffee Maker

Coffee Maker

Every coffee lover knows how frustrating it can be to clean out all the build-up that accumulates in your coffee maker over days or weeks of regular use. Even with careful scrubbing, warm water, and dish soap, those stubborn stains and residue just won’t get out. The worst part? They can make your coffee taste bitter and remove a lot of the aroma and flavor from the roast.

Since you’ll be drinking the stuff it makes, you should never use strong cleaners to get rid of coffee build-up. Yes, they’re totally effective at getting the gunk out of your coffee maker, but you’re risking poisoning your next cup of joe! Not to mention the effect those harsh chemicals have on the environment when you throw them out. That’s why we’re here to show you how to clean a coffee maker the eco-friendly way.

Here’s the full list of everything you’ll need to clean a coffee maker:

  • Vinegar
  • A clean rag or tissues
  • Clean coffee filters
  • Water (preferably running water from a sink)

That’s it! No need to resort to expensive cleaning solutions; everything you need can be bought at your local drugstore for less than $10. This is one of the ways you’re wasting your money on unnecessary purchases.

Now that you’ve got everything ready, it’s time to get to cleaning!

Fill your pitcher to the brim with a mixture of half vinegar and half water. Now, let it sit for a few minutes while the solution works its magic. The acetic acid in white vinegar will slowly kill bacteria and munch away at the calcium buildup in your coffee maker.

Now, stick a clean filter on your maker and pour about half of your water-vinegar solution into the reservoir. Power on your coffee maker and let it brew for a few minutes.

Next, turn off the coffee maker and let it just sit. Again, leaving it to rest will allow the acid in the vinegar to get to work tearing down mineral buildup. The heat from the brew will accelerate the process.

It’s time to pour all of your vinegar-water out of your pitcher and reservoir and down the drain.

You don’t want your coffee to taste like vinegar, so we’ve got to get all of that stuff out of there! Fill your coffee maker with regular water and let it brew. Do it twice to make sure all the vinegar’s gone.

Now, grab a rag or tissue and dry it out.

See? That wasn’t so hard! Do this at least once a week to keep your coffee maker clean and brewing consistently delicious coffee.

Related Reading: 6 Ways to Make Your Coffee Habit More Sustainable

4 Easy Ideas to Reduce Your Food Waste

Ideas to Reduce Your Food Waste

Did you know that between 30 and 40% of our food gets thrown away? This estimate means that an astonishing 133 billion pounds of food are wasted in the US in a year. There is a need for people to think for ideas to reduce food waste.

This sounds like a staggeringly huge problem, and it is, but there are ways you can help. There are 330 million people in the US. If everyone put in the effort to reduce their food waste, we could watch that number dwindle.

You can get started with these easy ideas to reduce your food waste!

1. Plan Before You Shop

Most people buy too much food when they go to the grocery store. They might buy things on impulse, pick up stuff because they “might” need it, or simply buy in bulk because it works out to be cheaper per item. Unfortunately, it won’t be cheaper if you throw half of it away and, unless you’re going to use it, you really shouldn’t buy it.

To that end, make a plan for what you’ll eat over the next few days. Make a list of items you’ll need to complete that plan. When you head to the store, stick to that list and try to ignore the fact that the Oreos are on sale…

2. Use All Your Food

Before heading to the store, make sure you really need to go. Use up all the perishables you bought last time before going out to buy more. Challenge yourself to come up with ways to use up items you have on hand.

As you get better about planning your shopping trips, this will become less of a problem. You’ll have everything you need to create the recipes you planned.

3. Organize Your Fridge

How many times have you forgotten about a head of lettuce and discovered a sludgy brown mess in the back of your produce drawer? This usually happens because everything is crammed haphazardly into your fridge and you can’t see stuff well.

To avoid this, clean out and organize your refrigerator. Plus, always make sure to put newer food behind older food to help ensure the older one gets used up first.

4. Learn to Love Leftovers

Leftovers sometimes get a bad rap because some people don’t like reheating food. But we’re here to tell you that leftovers are amazing! If you’re the one responsible for cooking in your house, you probably already really appreciate leftovers.

The trouble is, they can often get forgotten in the fridge. Store your leftovers in clear containers (as opposed to opaque) so you can see them and will be more likely to eat them. If you often have leftovers, designate one leftover day each week to use up all the random bits in your fridge.

Doing Your Part

We’ve just barely scratched the surface of all you can do to help cut down on food waste. You can also get friendly with your freezer, appropriately plan your portion sizes, make compost and use food scraps to fertilize your garden, and so much more! Hope these ideas to reduce your food waste help you and your community achieve environmental goals.

For more great tips and tricks, check out more news and updates on sustainability and home life!

3 Solar Gadgets That Will Make Your Life Easier

Solar Gadgets

Solar power is more accessible than ever, without the need for installing huge, expensive panels. Lots of gadgets now have solar panels built into them so you can charge them when you’re out and about (and away from power outlets), save on electricity bills, and enjoy using a sustainable energy source. Plus, they’re a life-saver when the power goes down or in the event of a natural disaster.

They’re also a great way to simplify your life. Everyone in the family from kids to seniors can benefit from having solar gadgets on hand.

Read on for our top three solar-powered gadgets that can simplify your life.

1. ABFOCE Solar Bluetooth Speaker

Whether you’re camping, spending a day at the beach, or just enjoying your backyard, a solar Bluetooth speaker helps you keep the music going no matter what. ABFOCE’s Bluetooth speaker comes with a built-in solar panel that gathers enough juice in 10 minutes to provide a half hour of playtime. Another cool feature is that it also functions as a battery bank you can use to power up your phone or other mobile devices.

2. Goal Zero Torch 250 Flashlight

A good flashlight is a must for your home, but it’s useless if it isn’t powered up or you don’t have batteries for it. A solar-powered flashlight, such as the Goal Zero Torch 250 Flashlight, is a good way to make sure you have a flashlight that is ready to go when you need it. When fully charged, it can run for 48 hours, and it has three modes to choose from: flashlight, floodlight, or red light for emergencies. Like the Bluetooth speaker, this gadget also doubles as a battery that can charge up a smartphone—just use the built-in USB plug.

3. Lattis Ellipse Keyless Smart Solar Bike Lock

Bike riders of all ages will love this solar-powered bike lock made by Lattis. It stops thieves from stealing your bike by sending an alert to your smartphone through Bluetooth when someone attempts to tamper with the lock. Plus, it’s a breeze to unlock it. You simply hold your smartphone near it and it opens automatically. You can also use a touchpad to enter your personal code.

Key Takeaway

Solar-powered gadgets are here and they are easy to use for the entire family and offer a ton of money-saving and environmentally friendly benefits.

Related Reading: Solar Panels: Great for you pocket and the environment