Take the Zero-Waste Challenge

Whether it's juicing, recycling, buying organic or using your own poop for fertilizer (look it up!), a sustainable lifestyle requires extra effort. But thanks to all the yoga-pants-wearing moms, it's not hard to stop creating waste destined for a landfill. Over the past couple of years, blogs such as Zero Waste Home and Trash Is for Tossers have taught readers to rethink our routines and ultimately discard a Mason-jar-size equivalent of trash once every couple of years.

It requires composting, always buying from bulk bins, carrying copious reusable bags and awkwardly asking your Thai restaurant to put its curry inside the Pyrex you brought. But it feels empowering and forces you to evaluate exactly what goes into your body and your home. Thankfully, there are plenty of substitutions so you can take baby steps toward a zero-waste lifestyle:

Biodegradable Toothbrushes. The rad bamboo toothbrushes from Brush With Bamboo (brushwithbamboo.com) have compostable handles and recyclable bristles. For entirely compostable brushes, visit the Environmental Toothbrush (environmentaltoothbrush.com.au).

Safety Razors. Why have I been using disposable razors?! So they can sit in a pool of water in my shower and rust after a week? Safety razors are expensive at the outset ($30-$50), but they last a lifetime, and replacement blades are cheap. Unfortunately, some facilities cannot recycle razor blades.

Kitchen Bits. Pretty much everything in your kitchen has a reusable version. Swap out plastic straws for stainless-steel, dishwasher-safe ones. Trade Ziploc bags for cloth sandwich bags. Switch from the pain-in-the-ass, plastic ice-cube tray to a sleek stainless-steel model. And if you prefer drip coffee, go from paper to hemp filters that will last years.

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