A few years now, I’ve been living an eco-positive lifestyle. Meaning that if everybody lived like me, we need 0,9 earths. It would mean that we’d have a sustainable future. However, I am not perfect. And I realize that I’ll never be perfect. And as long as I live within the earth’s capacity that’s all right. But as you might know me, I’m also always looking for ways to improve. And along with that challenge of improving, struggles come to show. That’s why today I want to share my 3 biggest sustainability challenges at this moment in time.
Here are my 3 biggest sustainability challenges at this moment:
1 Buying no vintage jewelry
The past few years I got some more jewelry. Most of them vintage and from very precious family members. However, I also got some new piercings. I tried, but getting new piercings using vintage jewelry is impossible. I love the look of those new piercings, 5 in total. But I notice that they’re very addictive. I want even more now. I have always had an addiction for jewelry. The more rings, necklaces and earrings, the better. However, buying new jewelry is not sustainable or fair at all. Buying vintage jewelry can be a solution, but the real problem here is my addiction for jewelry in general. It’s a never-ending story really.
And if I think about it, jewelry has no fuction other than being pretty. I don’t need a necklace for anything, or a watch, or earrings. And so, having no jewelry is more sustainable. But having no jewelry at all is not doable for me right now. I have thought about this and I want to keep what I already have, but I will not expand what I have. If something breaks, like earrings, I will probably replace them with another vintage pair. But I will not buy anything extra and that’s a challenge for me. I still struggle trying to resist this part of consumerism.
2 Buying less secondhand clothing
Another part of consumerism that I find hard to resist: clothing. It’s really hard seeing many people around me giving in to always buying new clothing. Nobody wears clothing for life or at least long periods. However, that is exactly what I want to do. I want to keep the clothing I have right now and buy nothing extra. I don’t buy new clothing at all, that’s easy. But the tricky part is secondhand clothing. I know that those clothing pieces are quite sustainable and cheap too. That’s why it’s very tempting to buy them. However, I want a capsule wardrobe. A wardrobe with very little items which I absolutely love. I am close to that, but I am not there yet. For now, the challenge is to only buy secondhand clothing when I really need something.
3 Deodorant in plastic
I used to make my own zero waste deodorant, a simple recipe that worked perfectly. However, since a few years this deodorant didn’t work for me anymore. I would wear clean clothing, bike to the grocery store and back home, and then I had to wash myself again and put the clothing in the laundry because it smelled like sweat. I tried other zero waste deorants too, but I felt like my body had changed. Somehow, my sweat is more stinky than it ever was. At one point I got so bad that even my coat stank after a trip to the store and back (underneath I wore 2 more layers). I also have a very strong sense of smell, so even when my clothes don’t smell that bad I am already disgusted by myself. Those two things together are a horrible combination.
And so, I resolved to aggresive anti-sweating measures. I considered botox, but that’s extremely expensive. But after a while, I found a perfect combination. I now use Odorex in combination with Deoleen. Odorex is a substance that you put under your armpits after you’ve taken a shower about 2-3 times a week. You let it sit on your skin for a night, and then wash yourself in the morning and you’re supposed to be good to go. That’s how aggresive it is. However, for me this wasn’t enough. I follow that routine, but also use Deoleen in the morning. Deoleen is an alternative to deodorant, it’s supposed to neutralize the smell of sweat.
The combination of the two works is perfectly. I usually can wear my clothing for a longer period without having to wash them. I also rarely smell my own sweat anymore. That’s perfect! However, Deoleen is packed in plastic and Odorex also has plastic components. That sucks, but I just can’t find a zero waste deodorant that works for me. That’s a struggle.
Those were my 3 biggest sustainability challenges at this moment.
Do not focus on the details
I do want to highlight something once more. When it comes to a sustainable lifestyle, you should not focus on the details. The things I listed here are details. They play a tiny role in living an eco-positive lifestyle. If you are new to a sustainable lifestyle: read this post. That post describes the top 10 of behaviors that cause the biggest impact. Living sustainable is about big lifestyle changes, like buying no new stuff, living plant-based and not flying. If you don’t know how many earths we’d need if everybody lived like you, please calculate that and then change your lifestyle. Don’t focus on the details. I only focus on the details because I already live eco-positive with a score of 0,9 earths.