UK lifestyle and money blog

Victoria Sully Nov 2018 Circle Logo

 

Welcome to the Lylia Rose UK money and lifestyle blog.  My name is Victoria Sully.  I'm a busy mum of two, wife, full-time blogger and online money-maker who’s always trying to make and save more money.  I’m passionate about making money online, healthy living and blogging.  I’m a mama on a mission to be healthier and wealthier!  Please join me on my journey.


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Category: Eco Friendly Living, Sustainability, Green

  1. Autumn style staples for kids – how to have a capsule children’s wardrobe

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    Before even being aware of the minimalist trend and capsule wardrobe trend, I was following it – even for the kids.  I believe my obsession with living with less started when I moved home around ten times in my twenties and also lived for three years in a bedsit.  I lived in one room and simply couldn’t have a lot of stuff.  Moving house so often was also such a pain that it was easier to simply live with less stuff to make for an easier move!  I also have this secret desire to pack everything up and travel the world, so that’s only possible without getting attached to belongings and having only few things!

    In recent years the capsule wardrobe and living minimally has become very mainstream and even a trend.  Many aspire to live like it, but find it difficult.  I think this is because of the emotional attachment people have to objects and also the fault of consumerism where we’ve been made to believe that having lots of things is valuable.  Having children is often an excuse for owning more and more things and having an excuse to go along with it!  Kids come with a lot of stuff.  Yes they do, but you can still live minimally.

    Could you have a capsule wardrobe for your child?

    A friend recently visited and saw my daughter’s wardrobe and exclaimed ‘are all your daughter’s clothes in there?’  Confused, I replied, yes and she explained that she’d never be able to fit her three year olds clothes in such a small space.  I opened it up and she was even more astounded as it’s not even full!  I then proceeded to show her my son’s wardrobe and my wardrobe and she was shocked questioning ‘where’s all your clothes?!’

    My children each have a child sized wardrobe.  Reuben has a draw of shorts and jogging bottoms, a drawer of PJs and underwear, then no more than 10 tops hanging on the rail.  Bella has a drawer with leggings, shorts and skirts, a drawer of nightwear and underwear and then half the hanging rail is school uniform and half the rail is for play clothes – more like a third and a third though as there is lots of space.

    Autumn style staples for kids – how to have a capsule children’s wardrobe

    Bella's wardrobe!

    I honestly don’t see the need for any more.  It would just be a waste of money. We have enough so as we don’t run out of clothes when I get a couple of wash loads behind and that is all.  Plus the kids probably have slightly more than they need to cover sickness and messy play.  At any one time they probably have around 10 tops, 10 bottoms each, a couple of packs of underwear (a bit more for Reuben as he potty trained this year and there’s still the odd accident), 1-2 hoodies or cardigans, a rain coat each and a warm coat each.  That’s all they need!  Bella has a couple of dresses too and often her jersey dresses last for ages as when they are too short to be a dress, she’ll use it as a tunic/long top over her leggings.  They have a pair of wellies each, boots and two play shoes.  Their feet have both grown two sizes this year, so I don’t want to spend a fortune here only for them to outgrow them in a couple of months.  Plus they tend to just stick to one pair of their favourite trainers each and wear them almost every day for play.

    More is just a waste

    Clothes are always getting covered in muck, food, mud, paint, etc, from school, home, the park and nursery, so they often only get worn once or twice and then thrown in the wash basket.  I’ve the washing machine on almost every day, sometimes more than once, so clothes are constantly being washed and re-worn over and over.  Once they are too stained, grown out or worn through then they go in a charity bag (we always have a charity bag on the go, hung up in a cupboard) – our local charity shops can even sell worn out clothes or ruined clothes to the rag trade, so there’s never any waste.  Then we buy clothes as we need to, in replacement. 

    I’m sure many people have far too many clothes than they actually need, especially for their kids.  I’m amazed that my friend has too many clothes to fit in one wardrobe for her three year old.  I can only imagine the clothes don’t get as much wear as my kids’ clothes.  Kids grow out of things so quickly too; we are having to buy new clothes every season!

    Kids outgrow clothes constantly

    Right now I’m thinking about buying some autumn clothes for the kids.  As the weather is cooling we need to get some trousers, long sleeved tops, jumpers and a new warm coat for both Bella and Reuben.  Whilst us adults can wear our same clothes from last year, the kids really can’t!  They have shot up so much – Bella is probably a couple of inches taller already, maybe more!  We will find kids designer wear online by checking selling marketplaces such as eBay, have a browse in our local charity shops and also try to source new sustainable pieces from companies like H&M who sell recycled clothes and organic clothes in their conscious ranges.  Sometimes the cheapest brands do not last as long, but there are some surprises like H&M that make really high quality clothes – I’ve had some items of clothing from them for over ten years!

    How to create a kids autumn capsule wardrobe

    I’ll be checking what still fits them firstly, to ensure we aren’t buying things we don’t need.  For example, I do still have Bella’s winter coat from last year and it’s in great condition, so we’ll see if it does fit her still before getting a new one.  Occasionally coats are so large that they do last two year which is a bonus!

    Here are all the items you really need to create a kids capsule autumn wardrobe:

    ·         Warm coat

    ·         Rain coat

    ·         Wellies

    ·         2x Play pumps/trainers

    ·         Boots/hi-tops

    ·         10 bottoms

    ·         10 tops

    ·         2x hoodies/cardigans 

    That’s it!  I even think we are over buying with the tops and bottoms, but like I said, that’s to cover all messy eventualities and backlogs of washing like if we go away for a week and need extra clothes.  Two pairs of trainers are to cover when one pair might get soaked or super muddy.  Bella will have some winter boots, but Reuben will have some hi-top trainers for those cold wet days.

    Obviously this list doesn’t include pyjamas, underwear and socks and so on.  The kids usually have 3-4 packs of socks at any one time, 2-3 packs of underwear and around 4 pairs of pyjamas, though Reuben has been surviving on two pairs of PJs for a while!

    It’s totally possible to have a capsule wardrobe for your kids this autumn.  We make use of t-shirts that still fit from the summer to wear under hoodies and cardigans, until it’s really too cold to do so.  Providing they don’t have a sudden growth spurt then this wardrobe can even see them through the whole winter, saving money and making sure all the clothes get plenty of wear.

    At the moment my kids are six years and three years old, so they are still quite messy, especially the three year old!  I expect as they get older we can even cut down the amount of clothes they need.

     

    Related blog posts

    Why every woman should create a capsule wardrobe

    How to create a warm and welcoming minimal dining room

    Essential items for a minimalist hair care routine

    Why less is more

    How my minimal bedroom décor describes my personality

     Autumn style staples for kids – how to have a capsule children’s wardrobe

    Collaboration

  2. My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ (as a family)

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    Last Friday and Saturday we went to UK Vegan Campout which also happened to be on our wedding anniversary!  So a double celebration!  I was very excited to go to this festival and in particular I wanted to eat lots of vegan street food and know that everything was safe for vegans.  It makes things so much easier!  I was probably most excited about the food if I’m honest!

    TheVeganKind Monthly Subscription Box

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ 7

    On the way and excited!

    We took our campervan and although they had sold out of campervan pitches, we were still able to book and just park in the main carpark.  This did mean we weren’t by any toilets so next year I’ll book way in advance, or if I go on my own I might even book a nearby hotel!

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ 8

    Why am I thinking of going on my own?

    Although the flyers said kids activities, I think I’d get more out of this event by going by myself.  It’s mainly about the vegan talks and films along with the street food and yoga, which is all right up my street, but not so fun for kids.  They do make it clear it’s not aimed at families, but they do have a kids activity tent and some bouncy castles.  This section was great for the kids, but it was in the family camping section, so far away from the main event.  Not ideal if you want to grab a snack or drink or listen to music at the same time.  So although the kids enjoyed this section we felt we either had to be in the main part of the festival with nothing to do for the kids, or far away from it and not a part of it so as the kids had something to do.  Next year would be amazing if the kids area can be with the main stuff so parents and kids are both together.  I think it’s more important than ever to involve kids as they are the future and to raise them vegan is more important than ever.

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review 1

    Bella loved this slide!

    The festival has loads of talks and film screenings all about veganism, health, plant based food, animal cruelty, activism, zero waste and more.  These are so inspiring and I managed to watch 2.5 talks!  I heard Kerry McCarthy, Neal Bannard and the beginning of Lex Rigby.  We managed to keep the kids settled with iPads during Kerry, I saw Neal on my own and then we left Lex’s talk as we were hungry, but also the kids were a bit bored.  It was better when I went to the talk on my own, but then I felt guilty leaving the family when I knew there wasn’t much to do outside.  I could quite happily have stayed in the talks and films all day long as I find them so liberating and inspiring.  I watch so many of them at home and it’s great to see speakers in person and learn from them or hear a different perspective.

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ 2

    Packed out for Neal Barnard!

    I would be much better going by myself next year or with Ben if he wants to, so I can sit in all the talks I desire and then fill the rest of my time with yoga, fitness and of course eating vegan food!  I didn’t go to any more talks as I’d have had to abandon the family pretty much the whole time.  I really wanted to see a film, but it was over two hours long so I felt too bad!  Obviously if we’d have known all this we would have planned a schedule or something, but it was our first visit so we had no idea what to expect.  I didn’t find the schedule until the Saturday lunchtime on their Twitter page as we arrived late Friday and I’d only previously tried to find it on their website, Facebook and Instagram where I couldn’t see it posted.  It was on Twitter, doh!

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ 3

    Next time I’ll go by myself, definitely find the schedule beforehand and plan out my two days.  I’ll make sure I go for the full Friday and Saturday.  I’ll probably book the tickets soon so I can get the early bird price and make sure I’m in the proper camping area with the van if Ben comes with!

    The music was also inside one room which meant you couldn’t hear it outside unless you were very close to the music building.  Music outside would be amazing as that’s what I feel festivals are all about.  I guess it was a good idea if raining, but in the lovely sunshine there’s nothing better than hearing the music outside.  Sitting eating vegan food on the grass with live music?  Yes please.  I hope they have an outdoor music stage of some sort next year.

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­

    The festival is only three years old and they say they will improve it for next year, so this is great.  It’s very young and with the massive boom in veganism I bet it will be even more popular next year.  This year they sold out with 5000 tickets.

    My review may seem quite negative, but that’s really from going as a family without knowing what to expect and not having any sort of schedule beforehand.  I am still glad I went as I know what to expect next time and will make the most of the event.  It’s definitely my cup of tea and I can’t wait to go next time.  I’ll be more excited than ever as I know how to plan my time there and will be able to do all the adult things!

    We still had a nice time, but I think it could have been a lot better had we known where to find the schedule beforehand and planned our trip better.  The festival could also have a few improvements to make it more family friendly and to have more entertainment outside in the day.

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ booja booja tuktuk

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ vegan ice cream

    I did adore the food!  Oh my!  I definitely pigged out on way too much vegan junk food, but it was delicious!  Booja Booja were there who are amazing.  We’ve had their ice cream at home as a special treat before and it was great to see their tuktuk set up.  I also tried a jackfruit burger from Biffs Jack Shack which was incredible.  So incredible, I had two!  For breakfast on the Saturday we had hot dogs from Vausages which were also amazing!  So tasty!

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ 5

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­ 6

    Vegan street food really is the best, so much flavour and so many unique ideas.  I really wanted to try vegan fish and chips from Battered, but the queue was always insane!  It must taste unbelievable.  There were even people queueing and waiting for them to open half hour before their opening time!  That’s how mad the queue was for them, it was constant.  I must try next year if they are there to see what all the fuss was about!

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review­vegan hot dog

    Vausages!

    Overall I’ll definitely recommend this festival, but for adults who can make the most of it in the talks and film screenings whilst being kid free.  I’ve already put it in my calendar next year and I know my review next time will be so positive as I’ll be able to make the most of the whole event and not feel like I’m missing out or abandoning people all weekend!

    More honest reviews

    My Very Honest CBeebies Land Hotel Review
    Peppa Pig World Review 2017 (and where to stay for under £100 for 2 nights)
    We The Curious | Bristol Science Museum Review
    First Choice Premier Family Holiday Review: Club Jandia Princess Hotel in Fuerteventura
    A Kid Free Weekend: Hot tub glamping and zip wire fun at Chepstow Quarry
    My Very Honest LEGOLAND Windsor Review
    All Things Wild Nature Centre Review

    My Very Honest UK Vegan Campout Review_ (as a family)

  3. How to shop more ethically and sustainably for clothing

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    In a previous blog post I looked at 13 ways to get rid of unwanted clothing without sending them to landfill.  I was shocked after reading 300,000 tonnes of clothing went to landfill in 2016 when they all cold have been repurposed, reused or recycled.  So now you know what to do when your clothes are worn out or unwanted, but perhaps you are wondering how to shop more sustainably or ethically for your clothes in the first place.  This is something that is quite new to me too and naturally feels like the next chapter for me to explore in my healthy living and living more sustainably journey.  Over the past few years I have changed all beauty and household products to natural where possible, changed all the food that we can to organic, become more conscious about plastic use and the amount of landfill waste in our home and made several other changes which you can read in my blog post 15 eco-friendly things I do on a regular basis.

    In this blog post I am going to explore some of the ways you can shop more consciously for your clothing:

    Fair Wear Foundation

    The fair Wear Foundation is a non-profit organisation that seeks to improve working conditions in 11 countries in Asia, Europe and Africa.  They keep track of the changes the companies implement to ensure workplace conditions are improved.  They help to ensure there is no child labour, a fair wage is paid, conditions are safe and work hours are reasonable as well as setting many other fair working standards.  They currently have 80 companies signed up which represent over 120 brands including, for example, engelbert strauss who are a German workwear company who also sell amazing all weather protective kids footwear, perfect for outdoor loving families.  Simply go to the FWF website and search the brands that are signed up.  You can check out their reports and be sure that these brands are working with the FWF to improve labour conditions where the clothes are produced.

    How to shop more ethically and sustainably for clothing

    Photo by Priscilla Du Preez 

    Organic cotton

    Chemical pesticides and fertilisers are so destructive to the planet, wildlife, our water supply and our own health.  We are a living experiment for the routine use of these chemicals and I’m sure all their devastating health consequences are not yet fully known.  We know we are suffering from soil erosion which is having an impact on food production and its mineral content is reducing.  The best way to make a stand against chemical farming is to choose organic instead.  Yes you can choose to eat organic food, but you can also choose to buy organic clothing which is made from organic cotton.  This is much kinder to the environment and in my experience the clothes are of a higher standard, softer and last longer.

    Sustainable brands

    Buying sustainably doesn’t always mean giving up the brands you love.  Even popular High Street brands such as ASOS, H&M and Urban Outfitters have green, conscious and upcycled ranges.  You can still shop in some of the stores you love whilst making a more planet friendly choice.  Before shopping with a brand have a look in the footer of their website to see if they have any information on their sustainability efforts.  Just dig a little deeper before choosing a brand to make sure they are taking responsibility for their clothing production and to ensure their vision aligns with yours.

    Buy second hand

    So many people give away perfectly wearable items to charity stores or even sell them on eBay.  Perhaps the fit was not right for them, they’ve not worn as much as intended or they have worn the item but no longer require it.  Either way, there are plenty of second hand clothing items for you to snap up!  Buying second hand is cheaper than buying a brand new item, plus it prevents the planet damaging production of a new item for you.  If you buy from charity shops you are also supporting a worthwhile cause.  It’s also exciting to rummage through rails in thrift stores as you’ll never know what you’ll find.

    Opt for a capsule wardrobe

    Far too many of us have far too many clothes in the first place.  There’s no need for this over consumption and throwaway fashion culture that we have been used to.  I’ve been working on reducing my capsule wardrobe to around 50 pieces of clothing only.  Count your clothes and you may be surprised at how many you own in total.  By starting a capsule wardrobe you will automatically become more conscious when clothes shopping as you’ll need to ensure the piece can mix’n’match with several of your other clothing items, as well as ensuring it’s a staple piece that you’ll wear time and time again.  I saw an article once say to follow the rule of 30 – if you won’t wear it at least 30 times then don’t buy it.  I’d like to disagree.  I think 30 is still too little and you should go for a rule of 100 at least!  I have several items of clothing I have had for several years and work them on a weekly basis, if not a few times per week.  This is what we should all be striving for to drastically reduce the unnecessary clothing production, pollution and waste.  We need to get it out of our heads that we can’t be seen in the same outfit more than once and this is something the celebrity world needs to adopt and encourage.

    Hopefully we can all start to make a change in the way clothing is produced and instead choose recycled, organic and repurposed clothing as our first choice.

    Related blog posts

    7 ways to live a more sustainable lifestyle
    3 Important Reasons to Choose Organic (other than your personal health)
    13 eco-friendly ways to start saving money in the kitchen
    Get 100% renewable energy with Bulb and save lots of money (over £250)

     How to shop more ethically and sustainably for clothing

  4. Lil Packaging goes eco-friendly with their ecommerce packaging range (and I review three products)

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    If you run an online shop like I do then you’ll understand the importance of appropriate packaging.  Since selling goods online as a small home business I’ve sold items from handmade cards and trinkets to jewellery, scarves and clothes.  Needless the say the bendable items such as cards need sufficient board backed packaging to protect them in the post, photo frames and the like need even more protection to prevent breakage and even the jewellery is easily broken if the postal wrap is not suitable.

    Clothes and scarves have been easier to sell as they are quite happy in a light mailing bag.  This usually provides me the most affordable option when it comes to packaging, but I’ve started to question whether it is the most environmentally friendly.  I switched to biodegradable bags only a year or so ago, but since watching several documentaries highlighting the plastic pollution problem, I’m no longer sure these are even an ideal solution. 

    Yes, the product may biodegrade into tiny little pieces, but these little micro plastics may never ever fully decompose back into their original elements.  Micro plastics are those which are less than 5mm in length and are harmful to our oceans, sea life and even those of us who eat fish.  Tiny fish unwillingly consume these plastics, larger fish eat those and larger fish eat those and so on, meaning the amount of plastic inside the fish is accumulating.  Then who catches those fish to eat them along with all the plastic?  That’s right, us.  Well, those of us who eat fish.  It’s kind of like karma in a way; we pollute the planet and now it is polluting us back.

    Lil Packaging goes eco-friendly with their ecommerce packaging range (and I

    Lil Packaging have realised how devastating single use packaging that contains plastic is upon our environment and so they have committed to being more sustainable by the end of 2018 by removing all their plastic lines.

    They say ‘By the end of 2018 we will have removed all plastic packaging from our stock product line up. This includes removing all mailbags, bubble mailers, plastic ecommerce tape and reformulating inks and glues to be more eco-friendly and sustainable going forwards. We want our brand Lil Packaging to become synonymous with plastic free packaging by the end of 2018.  As a packaging company that makes products with a short lifespan, we realise just how important it is that we do our bit to protect our environment.’

    Of course, I hope most of us don’t just receive a package and bin it!  I always keep mailing bags, cardboard sleeves and bubble wrap envelopes that I receive my online orders in, to reuse to post items to friends, family or for personal eBay orders.  Not only does this save money on personal packaging, but it reduces waste and the single use of these items.

    Lil Packaging Recyclable Cardboard Packaging Review

    With all this in mind I may move away from plastic mailing bags altogether and start using sustainably sourced cardboard packaging that can be reused and recycled (as well as compostable bags made from vegetable sources which Lil Packaging will be looking into).  Not only is this beneficial to the environment, but the cardboard is both sturdy and stiff so it will protect my goods in transit.

    Lil Packaging kindly sent me three of their products to review and they’ve arrived today.  I am bit of a stationery and organisation geek, so I do get excited by deliveries like these.  I love seeing the neatly stacked boxes and trying them out!  Having sent well over 3000 orders I am very used to packaging deliveries, but I still remember the excitement of setting up shop and receiving my very first packaging delivery that made me one step closer to being in business!

    Lil Packaging goes eco-friendly with their ecommerce packaging range (and I

    The first thing I noticed when I ordered from Lil Packaging was the competitive prices.  I usually order from eBay and assumed it was the cheapest, but Lil Packaging are very comparable.  Plus you know exactly who you are ordering from and their packaging has some extra touches which make it even more small business friendly.  Delivery is free if you spend over £25 and you can place orders with a minimum of only one quantity, but the price per item will obviously get cheaper the more you bulk buy.

    I’ve noticed the three items I ordered all have ‘Thank you for shopping with us’ printed on them which is a perfect touch for the customer to see when receiving their goods.  They also have strong glue strips which will save me getting in a sticky tangled mess with a roll of Selotape!  The boxes have fold lines which makes packing orders even quicker and easier.

    Lil Packaging goes eco-friendly with their ecommerce packaging range (and I

    Here’s what I ordered:

    Cardboard envelopes – These are strong envelopes made from FSC certified environmentally sustainable materials.  They are so quick and easy to use for my scarves and I can easily slot one inside, but I can also squeeze up to five in for a larger order.

    Twistwrap – Now these are promoted at use with toys and items such as board games that are in boxes that need great protection, but I was intrigued to see how they work.  I often receive goods in the post in these clever boxes and now I can use them to dispatch my scarves too.  They are much quicker than building a flat packed box and offer protection if you do have a boxed item that needs to arrive in perfect condition.  They are so quick and easy to use.

    Letterbox – The final item I ordered was a letterbox that is the maximum size of the Royal Mail large letter dimensions.  This is often the size of one or two of my scarves in one package, so it’s handy to know if they fit in this box without bulging out then that’s exactly the right size postage I need.  Again, it will save time having to measure the packages or test them with my Royal Mail size guide as Lil Packaging have made them to the specified size already.

    Why it’s so important to package your online orders correctly

    • High quality packaging will prevent customer complaints
    • The number of broken item returns from damage in transit will reduce
    • Good packaging gives a good impression of your brand
    • It keeps the products safe and protected during transit
    • It shows you care about the products inside and how they reach the customer
    • The packaging is the first impression of your brand once the goods are received for an ecommerce business
    • Professional looking packaging implies a professional brand (ever received something wrapped in a bin bag and far too much brown tape?...)

    For small business owners like myself it is vital to use appropriate packaging that ensures the goods arrive to the customer in perfect condition.  Lil Packaging definitely offer a wide range of competitively priced, high quality, responsibly sourced and eco-friendly packaging options for small online stores as well as large retail giants.

     

    Related posts
    15 Ways to Reduce Plastic Consumption
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    Lil Packaging goes eco-friendly with their ecommerce packaging range (and I

    I was sent some packaging in exchange for my honest review.

  5. 13 eco-friendly ways to start saving money in the kitchen

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    The kitchen is one of the most used rooms in the house.  In ours it is probably the busiest room and I can never seem to get out of there enough!  There’s always cleaning to do, food to cook, lunchboxes to prepare, laundry to tackle, recycling, waste to dispose of and cupboards and draws to sort out.  It’s never ending, especially as a family of four.  I expect it’s also the most expensive room in the house.  There’s always something switched on whether it’s the washing machine, kettle, extractor fan or our water distiller.  The fridge and freezer are always plugged in zapping energy all day.  In this blog post I am going to share with you how to start saving money in your kitchen whilst being more eco-friendly too.  Win-win!

    Wash by hand

    Hubby and I debate this all the time, but I’m certain it’s better to wash by hand.  We do only have a slim dishwasher and it just doesn’t fit much in at all.  We can fit one family meal’s worth of washing up in at a time and it runs for almost two hours!  I can’t see how that is cost saving as it is using electricity for two hours.  If I wash the same amount up I will use one or two hot soapy bowls of water and no electricity, perhaps a tiny bit of gas for the hot water.

    According to this statement I would definitely be saving money by washing up - ‘One cycle in a typical dishwasher costs the same in energy and water as heating between four to six washing-up bowls of water in the kitchen sink’ - Source

    I guess it depends on how much you can fit in your dishwasher and how many bowls of washing up you would do, but for us I’m certain it’s cheaper to wash by hand as I never use 4-6 bowls per load.

    Break dishwasher tablets in half

    If you do use the dishwasher then try breaking your tablets in half.  Hubby always does this (he prefers the dishwasher) and it washes everything just as effectively whilst making our tablets last twice as long.  Plus there’s less of the tablet getting washed into the environment each time.

    Use Eco-Eggs

    Save time and money on your laundry by using Eco-Eggs.  These are egg shaped cases that are filled with pellets made from minerals.  Chuck them in with your wash load and you’ll not need to use any detergent.  They come in various sizes that can last one year or more before you need to replace the pellets!  The dryer balls have fragrance sticks to make your clothes smell nice, reduce drying time and soften the clothes to stop fabric softener use in the wash.  Just replace the fragrance sticks every now and then.  Using both of these will stop you from buying detergent and softener, reduce your drying time which will save on energy costs and it’s much better for the environment.

    Use cloths instead of wipes

    Cleaning wipes may be convenient, but they are terrible for the environment.  If you must buy them then choose eco-friendly options, instead of non-biodegradable versions that are smothered in nasty chemicals.  Try using a plant based kitchen cleaner spray instead with cloths that you can wash and reuse time and time again.  Much cheaper than wipes, nontoxic and there’s no waste.

    Make tea with a teapot

    Do you always put a teabag in each cup when making tea for everyone?  Invest in a teapot and you’ll be able to use one teabag to make four or five cups of tea!  I regularly do this with green tea bags and have even got six good tasting cups of tea from one teapot.  Previously I used a bag per cup so this would have wasted six tea bags!  Less waste again and more money in your pocket as you need to buy less teabags over time.

    13 eco-friendly ways to start saving money in the kitchen

    Image

    Cook from scratch

    Making homemade meals is much more cost effective than buying expensive readymade meals and it’s healthier.  There’s a lot of debate online about which is really cheaper, but I definitely believe cooking from scratch is.  Just take a look at the price of a potato compared to a part baked one in the chiller section.  Just bake it yourself and save pennies or even pounds.  Another comparison is to look at the price of a readymade pizza.  It’s easy enough to make a thin dough base with water, oil and flour, then top with tomato puree and grated cheese.  You’ll have loads of flour left over and tomato puree and cheese… enough to make even more pizzas another day.  I’m sure making your own food can be much cheaper, just less convenient.  Plus there’ll be less packaging waste.

    Meal plan

    Meal planning can help to save money by reducing food waste.  If you’re buying random items each week not knowing what you’re going to be cooking then there’s a higher chance you’ll waste some.  If you plan your week’s meals in advance then you’ll shop for exactly what you need and use everything.

    Save leftovers (or give to pets)

    If you have left overs then save them to use the next day for another meal.  Throwing them into the bin is just throwing money away!  If you have pets then they may appreciate the leftovers and this can reduce how much pet food you need to give them.

    Bulk buy

    Buying in bulk or larger sizes is a great way to save money.  Just check the labels in the supermarkets for the ‘price per’ to see which size offers the best value for money.  It can also reduce the packaging waste too.  It may be more expensive upfront, but will save money in the long run.

    Batch cook

    Batch cooking is a great way to save time and money!  You can buy ingredients in bulk which will save money, you’ll be doing the majority of the chopping/cooking/food processing and so on in one go which will save on energy costs, plus you can divide the food into controlled portion sizes to reduce waste.  It’s also a brilliant way to use up veg that will turn if left for another day or two and so prevents food waste.

    Freeze browning fruit

    Don’t throw away browning fruit, especially bananas.  Peel and freeze bananas to use at a later date in a smoothie or dessert.  Frozen bananas make the best milkshakes when blended with your favourite milk.  We love almond milk for a sweet taste.

    Distil or filter water

    We were buying mineral water at first as our tap water tastes so horrid and isn’t very clean at all.  I actually measured it with a TDS meter to see how many dissolved substances were in it and it read 200ppm.  That’s 200 parts per million.  200 different little things floating in the water that I don’t want to consume regularly!  Plus I was concerned about the amount of plastic waste from the water bottles.  Oh and it was expensive to buy mineral water for our whole family!  So after looking into the water thing more I decided I wanted to distil our water at home and invested in a home distiller for around £150.  This means we get pure water to drink and cook with and over time we’ll make our money back compared to buying high quality bottled water.    If you’re regularly buying bottled water then look into buying your own filtration system or a water distiller.

    Change energy supplier

    One of the best money saving things we did this year was to switch energy supplier for the first time saving ourselves over £250 for the year.  We switched to bulb who use renewable energy sources and they are much cheaper than the main energy suppliers.  You can get £50 credit as well as saving around £200 per year (we’ll save £264) by joining Bulb with my referral link by clicking here

    There are so many ways to start saving money in the kitchen and be more environmentally conscious too.  Just start looking at where most of your money or energy usage is going and see if you can make a change.

     

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