The holidays will be here before you know it, and with them comes all the holiday shopping. But if you’ve spent the year trying to be more eco-conscious in your living and your choices, you may find yourself hoping to make more eco-conscious choices in your consumerism. This can seem daunting on the outset. After all, you don’t control how much packaging a company might choose to use or what kind of materials they use. But there are ways to be more eco-conscious in your spending. Here are a few of our favorite tips:

Care For What You Have

Before you start shopping for new products, take stock of what you have but no longer use. Is there anything that you can repurpose, maybe taking the place of something new? Don’t be afraid to improvise — that can just be a pleasant quirk that impresses your friends and family. If you can’t reuse your current belongings, is there a way to recycle them or fashion them into some kind of art?

Cut Back On Impulse Buying

Do you ever buy things just on impulse, a knee-jerk emotional reaction to a bad day or simply something you have to have? If you’ve succumbed to this habit, then you probably well know that often the things bought on impulse end up collecting dust, unused. Worse, they might go in the trash after a while. Instead of following that impulse, mark it down and wait one week or two weeks. If you still want to buy it after that time, go ahead. If the desire has died down, then you know you didn’t really need it.

Buy What You Need

Even when you go to the grocery store with a list, you may find twenty other things to pull off the shelf once you get there. Food waste can be a major problem for many homes, due to buying much more food than the household will need. Like impulse buying, try to curb this tendency. Buy only the food you need. After all, you can come back. If you need to buy in bulk for budget reasons or because you have a large household, make sure that what you buy in bulk will last until you’re finished with it and don’t come back for more until you’re through.

Choose Eco-Conscious Companies

You may not have control over the products that companies put out, the amount of packaging they use or the material, but you can control who you choose to support. Where you can, try to support companies that make an effort to reduce packaging waste or use recycled or recyclable material. This may not always be possible, depending on your budget, but making the effort where you can is likely to make an impact on your carbon footprint.

Opt for Reusable Products

Try to avoid single use products. Instead of plastic water bottles or plasticware, get a tumblr, a water purifier, and silverware. Instead of using paper towels to wash and dry dishes, get a sponge and a rag. This will not only help the environment, but it will help you to save money and gas, as you won’t be constantly returning to the store to replace single-use products.

You can also make more eco-conscious choices when it comes to your waste management — by recycling. Contact Brazos Valley Trash Valet & Recycling today for more information or to sign up for our trash pickup service with complimentary recycling pickup.