By JASMINE GARNSWORTHY
‘Green shopping’. It’s more than a fad people and it’s a fantastic way to find really, super, fabulous stuff that doesn’t cost the Earth (literally…). And no, I’m not talking about taking your green bags grocery shopping (although, it’s a good start). Green shopping brings the double benefit of finding cool, quirky, unique products AND keeping our country beautiful for the next generation. There is also that ‘warm-fuzzy’ feeling that comes from being an environmentally-friendly shopper – and who would say no to a little self congratulation now and then.
You may have read about our Mamamia ‘office clothes swap’. We got a huge response from readers to this fabulous idea, which basically involves bringing in your pre-loved clothes, along with the rest of your office, and swapping them with workmates. You get free clothes, save some dosh by not buying new ones , recycling stuff you don’t use instead of adding them to landfill AND the added bonuses of cleaning out your wardrobe (you can read all about our clothes swap here). Plus, the quality of stuff? Just awesome. One person’s trash is another’s sparkly t-shirt.
Everyone contributes their clothes. And our boardroom begins to resemble a warehouse sale
The clothes swap got me thinking of other ways to find cool, unique products, cut down waste and, sometimes, even save cash – not just on clothes, but on everything from cars to celery.
So, here are eight ingenious ways for you to try shopping green for just about everything you could ever want. Toaster, cars and vegies included:
1. Clothes and bags: “Op-shop” is not a dirty word. Op-shopping and amazing finds are like wine and cheese. Keith and Nicole. They just go together. You don’t need to be a hipster to have a crack at op-shopping, and I have to say that Vinnies in Bondi always pull through with what-the-flip cheap, on-trend and quirky clothes. Always. Fondly nick-named ‘Tempe Tip’, Salvos in St Peters (Bellevue Street actually) is another one for savvy Sydney shoppers.
2. Beauty: I could tell you to stop wasting electricity on the hair dryer and straightener (ha ha), but let’s be realistic here and start small. Aveda offer a gentle plant-based, eco-friendly shampoo and conditioner, while skincare brand, Pod Puraceutical is 100% carbon neutral and all their packaging is made from recycled materials. Haven’t tried it (yet), but have heard very, very good things.
3. Home: It’s not just fashion and beauty getting its green on. If you haven’t been to Funkis.com, well, you should click the link or head to their store in Paddington, Sydney. Sure, it’s considerably more expensive than Salvos, but their range is so coooooooool. Aside from my wishlist that consists of their entire kitchen collection, this clever little site also offers glassware, cleaning products, clothes and accessories. AND all of it is manufactured sustainably. Feeling warm and fuzzy already.
4. Furniture: Gomi - you see an abandoned item on the street. You list it, anyone claims it. And you can nab freebie for yourself too. Awesome concept.
5. Groceries: Markets! Considering the food is ‘fresh from the farm’ and generally tastes a whole lot better, it’s really a no-brainer. On a Saturday, I often head to the Growers Markets in Kings Cross… green bag and all. If you’re based in Sydney and want to find your local Organic and Farmers Market, head here for a full list… and enjoy.
7. School uniforms: Find A Uniform is just what it sounds like. Here you will find second-hand uniforms for school, scouts, ballet and more.
8. Babies and kids clothes: SwapItBaby – great to find stuff for little people, that other little people have outgrown.
City of Sydney
The Good Hood is about celebrating all the good things we’re doing to make the City of Sydney a better place. Simply snap a photo of your Good – think recycling, reusing, making, growing and living more sustainably – and upload it to our map of Sydney for your chance to win one of three great prizes. Enter now at thegoodhood.com.au. Open to Sydney residents only.
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What do you do to make sure that you’re a green shopper?