A clean home is a happy home. However, if your organizing solutions aren’t eco-friendly, your home might not actually be 100 percent clean. Most organizing tools on the market today are made from harmful plastics. Instead, turn to the sustainable options listed below to truly stay clean and green.
The first step towards organizing is reviewing your current strategy. While doing so, it might be tempting to trash things you no longer want, but it’s best to gift them to someone who you know can use them or donate them to help others. Even if your clothing or home decor has seen better days, it can be given a new purpose. Look for charities accepting donations and that can pick up items directly from your porch. Organizations such as the Purple Heart, Habitat for Humanity ReStore, and Goodwill can accept all kinds of household items, including clothing and furniture. Be sure to call ahead to ensure that your store can accept the items you’re donating.
Once you get rid of old items, take inventory of what needs to be replaced. Nowadays, there is no shortage of lightly used secondhand items that you can repurpose. The easiest option is to ask your friends or family members if they have items they no longer want that will suit your needs. You can also find free organizing supplies by joining an online group such as a Facebook Marketplace or a local buy nothing group. Groups like these often post regularly, just be sure to meet in a public place to pick up your items to ensure safety for both parties.
Reusing objects you already own is an eco-friendly way to get organized and gives purpose to something that might otherwise be clutter or trash. It also eliminates the cost of buying something brand new to store your odds and ends. The household materials below can be repurposed into useful storage containers.
Jars and mugs
- Spaghetti sauce or salsa jars: use for storing pens and markers in an office or buttons in a craft room.
- Mason jars: use for keeping sugar and spices on your kitchen counter or for holding toothbrushes.
- Coffee mugs: paint them for organizing office or beauty supplies.
Tins and boxes
- Shoeboxes: used for holding and sorting mail.
- Tin cans or soup tins: decorate them with chalkboard paint or decorative paper, and stash small toys and tiny knickknacks in them in a kid’s room.
- Breath mint or other small tins: contain paper clips on your desk or pocket change in your mudroom.
- Soda boxes: place your canned goods in these to organize your pantry.
Purchase with purpose
When you can’t upcycle or find a solution from a secondhand source, be intentional about your storage-solution purchases. Below are a few eco-friendly products you might consider buying for your home.
Silicone sandwich bags
Plastic containers and single-use sandwich bags aren’t the best items for the environment, and they don’t keep your food fresh for very long. Silicone sandwich bags are the latest and greatest in food storage technology because they provide a lasting seal, and you can wash and reuse them. Check out these bag options from Stasher that come in a variety of sizes. You won’t need to buy another food storage system for a long time.
Bamboo storage bins
Countertops are notorious gathering places for clutter. These aesthetically pleasing bamboo bins are the perfect size for a vanity, dresser, or coffee table to hold small everyday objects. Bamboo is an eco-friendly alternative to plastic and synthetic fabric bins. These bins are also great for kitchen and bathroom storage as bamboo can stand up well to high heat and humidity.
Cotton rope baskets
These flexible cotton rope baskets are a stylish way to corral your blankets, towels, and children’s toys. Organic cotton is a soft, durable material that makes it a great option for a variety of home storage needs. From bags to baskets, cotton is long-lasting when properly cared for and it can be dyed any color to match your decor.
A clean and green home is a happy home. By implementing the tips above, you’ll be wondering why you waited this long to take an eco-friendly approach to organizing.