5 single use items to remove from your life, starting now!

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1. Dryer Sheets

Believe it or not, those lovely fresh rain-lavender-tropical twist-linen scented dryer sheets are filled with various chemicals that can be irritating and harmful to your body! Some of these include: Benzyl alcohol, an upper respiratory tract irritant, Ethyl acetate, which is listed on EPA’s hazardous waste list (!) and Pentane, a VOC chemical known to be harmful if inhaled and can irritate and burn the skin after prolonged exposure (hello underwear?!).  It’s easy to ditch this low totem household item, in fact, most people who have quit using them all together see no difference in their laundr – except for the occasional static cling. Can’t ditch it? Get crafty and create your own natural dryer sheets using essential oils and wool dryer balls!   

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 < http://www.oursmallhours.com/natural-alternative-dryer-sheets/ >

2. One time Coffee Pods

Repeat after me, “K Cups kill,”  according to NPR, 60 billion K Cups went into landfills since the rise of its creation.  Until 2020, when Keurig plans on switching 100% of the cups to a recyclable material, toss ‘em out of your life.  It really isn’t asking too much to pour a little water over some fresh ground beans.  In fact, I think many of us find it sweet and romantic if we were served carefully crafted coffee rather than K cupped convenience.  If your want to hang on to your K machine, buy a reusable K cup and fill it with your purchased grounds. 

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 < http://www.ekobrew.com/ >

3. Plastic Bags

No shock here, plastic bags are harmful to the environment.  By the time you have finished reading half of this article, 1 million fresh bags have been used.  Plastic bags are deadly to our marine environment, ranked as the second biggest water pollutant behind ciggies.  In one square mile there is an average of 46,000 different pieces of plastic in the water.  We might be able to tell the difference between a floating plastic bag (or a released balloon!!) and a jellyfish, but sea turtles and other marine animals can not.  By ingesting these harmful products animals will die from digestive blockage and/or suffocation.  To combat the baggage, next you go to the store bring your own reusable bags, it’s that simple – and if you forget it at home at least opt for paper bags!     

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4. Take Out Utensils

So not necessary my friends – and they are not recyclable! You know you are ordering take out, so just come prepared, and if you’re getting it to eat on your couch with a cheesy movie on, tell them not to pack the utensils – you obviously don’t need them! Go open your drawer and grab a fork, or better yet go get yourself some awesome chopsticks! Some restaurants have eco utensils which is a step in the right direction, but when do you really need plastic sporks? Never.  

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< http://www.lekueusa.com/ >

5. Water Bottles

Water bottles are probably the easiest thing to nix in your life if you haven’t already joined the bandwagon.  America alone used 50 billion water bottles last year; and the production (not including transportation) of those 50 bil. took approximately 17 million barrels of oil – that would fuel 1.3 million cars for a year.  ‘Take back the tap’ and purchase a reusable water bottle and coffee cup while you are at it!  For your greenest water purchase look for a glass or aluminum water bottle. Oh hey, by the way, those infamous blender bottles? Resist the brand name and purchase an off brand made of glass!

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