Those who know me or have been here a while know this is the story of my life!!! LOL
I have always been about using less. It truly isn't always about saving money - it is just a way of life. I don't need excess of anything and some things just aren't that good for you or the environment.
Using less doesn't hurt anything (unless it is medication).
What do I use less off?
- Electricity - very seldom (if ever) do I have more than one light on at a time. I may use a light in the room that I am in - but odds are the TV gives enough light. With daylight hours getting longer, I doubt that I will light a lamp for months. I also have a couple battery operated candles, solar lights, and candles - if I need extra light
- When making OJ from concentrate - it says mix w/3 cans of water. I use 4. I don't notice a difference and I get a quarter more
- Meat - if a recipe calls for a pound - I use 1/2 pound. Meat doesn't have to be used in abundance. I can add more pasta, beans, rice, veggies, or cheese to fill in a recipe. Some days are NO meat.
- Shampoo - I always mix water with shampoo. I watched a top notch pro years ago, who said no matter the shampoo (even high end) it is too detergent for hair. I mix 1/3 bottle shampoo to 2/3 of hot water. Give it a day to 'melt' together and just shake a little before use. I get tons of suds using it this way
- Fabric softener - IF I use fabric softener sheets I cut them into thirds. They work fine and so much less residue left on clothes and drier and vent. Usually I use a splash of vinegar in rinse water
- Bleach - rarely use. I have powdered bleach I keep on hand (Dollar Tree), but instead of bleach I use peroxide for whiting laundry. It is natural and works
- Sugar - when making tea or Kool-Aid I use a little less sugar than called for (sweetener). My drinks are generally just as sweet by reducing by a 1/4 cup. I often do the same in baking - it hasn't caused a problem yet
- Paper towels - I keep on hand strictly for cleaning up cat yack when that happens. Other times I use old washcloths, micro fiber, or rags. Old socks work great for dusting - place over your hand and go to town
- Laundry detergent - dish soap. I use way less laundry detergent than called for. My clothes never get that dirty, so I don't need a lot of detergent. I always add water to the bottom of a bottle and swish and get at least 2 more loads. Dish soap - I do the same as I do with shampoo. 1/3 soap and 2/3 water - with a splash of vinegar added (helps cut grease). SUDS is not what cleans - hot water does the most good
- Toothpaste - I use a pea size glob on my toothbrush and that is plenty to do the job. A couple times a week I mix baking soda and peroxide together in a paste for whitening instead of toothpaste.
- Plastic baggies - I wash and re-use as often as possible. I do that with both zip lock and vacuum seal bags. I have even been known to wash icky ones in with the kitchen towels (hot water) and peroxide
- Water - I tend to catch water in jugs when waiting for it to heat up. I use it for plants and pets or storage for flushing in an emergency. I have rain barrels for nature's water for the flowers and garden in summer
- Food - eat less and be healthier! I have been trying to eat less to lose a few pounds. I eat one real meal in the late afternoon - so it has time to break down before bed. No snacks after 6PM. Three meals a day is a habit. It isn't necessary
- Laundry - I don't always wash clothes after one use. My outer clothes generally don't get dirty (unless working in yard), so I wear them more than once before laundering. It also makes the clothing last longer and I always wash clothes inside out!!!!! No pills, no pulls, no lint - yet clean. I also most always use the QUICK cycle - less water and electricity used and clothes are still clean,
- Hair dye - I have short hair - so don't need to waste an entire box. I get the kind where you mix 2 different components together. Each bottle is the same amount per ounces. I have kept an old mix bottle and measure out exact amounts of both ingredients and mix (I use an old shot glass to measure). I can easily get 3 dye jobs out of one mix - more is just touching up roots.
- HVAC - I open windows as often as possible for fresh air, open blinds for sun/heat during daytime in winter, wear more layers if cold or lighter clothes in summer. I use ceiling fans all year
- Milk - I usually get whole or 2% milk. When making a recipe or adding milk to something - I always mix water with milk. 2/3 or 3/4 cup milk with balance being water = a cup of 1% or so. I drink it as it comes from the bottle - but always add water for cooking/baking.
- Kleenex - haven't bought in years. I use hankies. I know some people think it is gross to have to wash them - but think about it - you wash your undies and use again!!!!! Just think where they have been!!!! LOL. If I happen to have a bad cold or allergy symptoms - I might use some TP - just because I can flush.
- Chemicals - I try to make as many cleaning items as possible. I use peroxide, baking soda, water, vinegar and orange cleaner (from citrus peels) and blue Dawn. I make a blend of marigold and mint to spray in the greenhouse and on cat beds to ward off fleas in summer. (Cats lay in the mint a lot in summer). I make lip balm for daily use - mix together coconut oil and crumbs from an old lipstick (just for color). Mix together - use a lip brush or Q-tip to apply. Coconut oil is great on chapped hands and feet.
- Money - I always look for deals. Clearance, manager mark downs, sales, coupon deals, yard sales and thrift - even trash pick at times. My biggest save with MONEY - is talking myself out of leaving the house. Most times I am just going to be going - I can usually always get by with what I have!
I hope this gives you an idea of some ways to use less and still live great. If you can stretch items out - well not only do you save money, you shop less, you help the environment and you will be just as clean, healthy and happy as ever!!!!!
What do you use less of that no one ever notices!