Steps to Sustainability: How you can adapt your life to become more sustainable

Since there is no way of avoiding the disposable nature of the ‘new normal’, we’ve tried to switch to more sustainable living in every way possible. We have also invited this lifestyle into our working life and have switched almost completely to recyclable packaging- except for eco-friendly stickers which are almost impossible to locate. If, like us, you’re growing concerned about the amount of waste produced by our new Covid-friendly lifestyle, we’ve got a few tips to help you live more sustainably.


Trade the supermarket for small shops

 One of the biggest ways you can support your local area and adjust to a more sustainable lifestyle is by exchanging your big weekly supermarket shop for local stores that stock local produce. Local food shops often get their stock from nearby locations so not only will you be supporting the area you live in by minimising overseas transportation, but you will also be reducing your carbon footprint by exchanging car journeys for a walk around the local high street. Making the small transition to buying more local produce can help to progress to a more sustainable way of living without any long-term commitments- any week you don’t have time to shop local, you can simply resume shopping at your local supermarket. Certainly, here in Whitley Bay, there are a whole host of local food and drink suppliers such as: 

  • Eden Valley Farm Shop: Eggs, jams, preserves. 
  • Pure Knead: Bread and pastries.
  • Nicholson’s Butchers: Meat and oven meals. 
  • Tom Owens: Fruit and vegetables. 
  • NORD: Beer and ale. 


And we know further afield you have your own favourite local shops and suppliers that we love to hear about.


Abandon single-use products

 Plastic carriers, cotton pads, feminine hygiene products, kitchen roll and cling film all have one thing in common- they are single-use products. By swapping out these products you can reduce your waste and limit your use of plastics and unsustainable materials. But where do we start, I hear you ask- not to fear, we have a quick and easy-to-read list of alternative products and ideas:

  • Plastic carriers: exchange single-user carriers with fashion-forward tote bags and the planet will love you forever! We stock a whole range of totes that are manufactured in the UK with organic cotton and vegan inks. You can use them as a fun everyday bag or pop them in your normal bag or car to use when shopping. 


  • Cotton pads and Cling Film: Drawn by Rhiannon has a full collection of reusable products with completely biodegradable packaging. Her reusable cotton pads come in three unique coastal designs are planet friendly, even when you’re done with them. The Food Wraps are easy to use and mould to food with the heat from your hands, when you’re finished with it you can wash is and leave it to dry ready for the next use. 


  • Feminine hygiene products: Comfort is key here so we can’t say this would be for everyone, but Period Cups are a great reusable alternative to tampons and are washable between uses. If not, major tampon producers have exchanged to cardboard applicators, or you can even get applicator-free tampons to reduce plastic waste.


  • Kitchen roll: This sounds very obvious, but tea towels are a great alternative to kitchen roll and you can get plenty of cute designs to match your kitchen. At For the Love of the North we also have a wide collection of organic tea towels that have been printed with vegan inks. 


Avoid buying new clothes:

 There is no such thing as ethical or sustainable consumption, especially within the fashion industry. However, you can source your clothing from more sustainable means such as second-hand shops, eco-conscious brands. We always try to spend that little more on clothes to ensure that they are sustainably sourced and will last longer, but we do realise this is a luxury and won’t be accessible for everyone. Cropping or dying your old clothing to give it a new lease of life is a great alternative to purchasing something new and is cheaper than sourcing from sustainable brands.

Some of our favourite sustainable brands are:

  • Any charity shops in your local area: there are some hidden gems in charity shops, so if you have the time (and the patience) this could be great for you.
  • Miss Persnickety, Whitley Bay: our favourite local destination for second-hand designer treats.
  • Lucy and Yak: this isn’t a local brand, but we couldn’t help but give it a mention because we both LOVE their timeless dungarees. They are a great place to start with eco-conscious clothing brands.
  • We also have begun to introduce our own clothing line into our brand teaming up with local creatives to produce eco-friendly tees and jumpers. Keep any eye on our social media channels to see our next release!


Reduce how much meat you eat:

 We know that this is a controversial one and many people will never give up eating meat and that’s okay. Swapping out just one meal a week for a veggie or vegan alternative is a great way to reduce your meat consumption and allows you to keep eating the food you love while remaining actively conscious about the environment.


These changes may seem very extreme but a little really does go a long way. Making small adjustments to your daily life is the best way to introduce sustainability as a permanent fixture. We started making these tiny changes our daily life, slowly adding them to our work lives and now we can proudly say we are as sustainable as possible both at work and at home (minus those pesky stickers).


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