sustainable storage ideas

On Campus, Lifestyle

3rd November 2021

Top Tips for Student Sustainability

For many students University offers the chance to have control of your own space for the first time and so is a great opportunity to make some small changes to help minimise damage to our planet. You may have already invested in a favourite reusable water bottle for trips to the library, but I’ve compiled my top tips to inspire you to make your next sustainable swap. Take what is relevant and applicable to you and your situation and leave the rest! Keep reading to get the inside scoop on eco-friendly student life hacks with our top tips for student sustainability…

Shampoo and Conditioner Bars

Perhaps try out a shampoo bar or a conditioner bar instead of the usual bottled variety this autumn. By having to lather the product before using it, you may find you use less product than when squirting an estimated amount into your hands. This means it’s likely to run out less quickly which is great for the wallet and the world.

If you can’t find any bars that take your fancy, perhaps try out a refill shop such as Purple Carrot where you can still use a liquid product without having to buy new packaging every time.

Sustainable Razors

For a long time, I put off buying a reusable razor for one reason, I was scared of replacing the blade when it became blunt. I would instead buy men’s plastic razors but now, after buying a reusable alternative, I will never go back! Switching the blades was nowhere near as difficult and dangerous as I had built it up to be in my head. I find it’s a higher quality shave and it has saved me money as I go through blades a lot slower than I went through low-quality plastic razors.

Washing Machine Temperatures

Though perhaps less exciting than other eco-friendly life hacks, reducing the temperature you wash your clothes at is a great way to help the planet with just the twist of a dial. Similarly, opting for a clothing rack over the tumble dryer whenever possible saves you money on your energy bill meaning both you and the environment benefit – it’s a win-win situation!

Eco-friendly Sanitary Products

If you are someone that has periods, there is an ever-increasing number of options for a more sustainable way of looking after yourself. It’s all about finding what works for you, whether that’s reusable period pads, period underwear, or menstrual cups. My advice would be to not give up on a particular method just because one brand doesn’t work for you – keep exploring! Now, more than ever, there’s something out there for everyone.

Takeaway Packaging

While we can consider a fast takeaway against the purpose of student sustainability, when you just have to order fast food to cure your hangover, pay attention to which restaurants deliver your food in recyclable packaging and which don’t. If the wrapping doesn’t meet your standards, it might be time to look for a new place to frequent.

Repairing Clothes

You don’t have to be a tailor on Savile Row to fix up damaged clothes. Charity shops on Smithdown Road sell thread for as little as 20p and it often only takes a couple of stitches to make a t-shirt wearable again. If the item of clothing really is no longer decent, you could always use it as a duster (life hack).

Another tip on the subject of sustainable clothing is to rent your outfits for university balls and other events. This can save you from splashing out and clogging up your wardrobe on something you may only wear once.

Food Containers

Glass jars are usually recyclable, but I recommend washing out any glass jars you buy in your weekly shop and repurposing them in your home. Mason jars are a staple of home décor but can be pretty pricey to buy so this is an easy way to get your money’s worth out of the purchase and saves a trip into town for another storage container.

Student sustainability is all about using what you already have so why not keep the jar your pesto came in to store your bobby pins? Once you’ve peeled the label off, you can decorate the jar however you like – or just leave it plain for a more minimalist look.

For more sustainable swaps I recommend this video by the Sustainable Vegan. See our article by Alice Bartholomew on being The Vegan Student for more tips and eco-friendly student life hacks!

Featured Image Credit: The Author