ad // In the time I’ve been blogging – over 9 years – the focus towards more sustainable practices has increased TENFOLD. When I started blogging *back in the day*, the topic of sustainability didn’t really crop up and huge fashion hauls were the complete norm as soon as you went on YouTube. Since then, we’ve all got a little older and a little wiser and realized that we need to do more within this industry and even consumer behavior is changing thanks to the pandemic, too!
However, every now and again, I’ll feel a pang of guilt over something or another. Throwing something away. Too much packaging in a parcel I receive. Not using a product I was sent months ago. It’s always something. Although I do tend to feel guilty about almost everything – all the time. Including my job in general.
Today I want to talk about being an environmentally friendly blogger. Because it’s safe to say, our industry isn’t particularly environmentally friendly. Fast fashion hauls and excessive buying to name just a few things that impact our environment which are common practice in the influencer industry.
Of course I’m very aware that we can’t ALL do everything. I’m a realist. But I believe that if we all do our bit, it would make a huge impact in the greater scheme of things. As bloggers however, I do believe we have some sort of responsibility to at least TRY and be adopt some environmentally friendly practices.
This may be easier for some than others, depending on your niche and lifestyle factors. Being a Vegan food blogger, it’s quite easy to see how they’re helping the environment. But someone like me, who isn’t Vegan and who blogs about a lil of everything sometimes, it’s much harder to see what I’m doing in order to be an environmentally friendly blogger.
This certainly isn’t me trying to convince you I’m doing the world so much good. I know I could be doing more but these are all actions I’m taking or at least planning to take going forward with my blog.
If you feel like you’re in a similar position to me and need to refine your practices to become a more environmentally friendly blogger, here are some realistic suggestions for you!
Recycle all of your packaging from PR packages
This is a super obvious one and I’m sure you’re all doing this anyway *side eye*. But one of the easiest things we can do is ensuring that we recycle everything we possibly can from the packages we’re sent. Some bloggers – especially big influencers with a lot of followers – are sent a LOT of stuff (I’m not one of them). Stuff = packaging. So the least we can do is dispose of that packaging sensibly.
Voice your concerns to brands who aren’t environmentally friendly
It’s always worth making a point if some brands aren’t being particularly environmentally friendly with their packaging too. Not blogging related, I tweeted Tesco once when our shopping was delivered with an unnecessary amount of bags and they did reply to me and look into the issue. So as long as you’re clear and explain your concerns respectfully, there’s nothing wrong with speaking out!
Consider using an environmentally friendly web host
Making sustainable changes to your blog life doesn’t always mean something physical, like clutter or products that test on animals. Did you know, with over 2% of greenhouse emissions attributable to datacenters, websites have more of an impact on our environment that we might think.
Green web hosting is a great option for you, if you’re serious about blogging and want to go self hosted but also want to do your bit to help the planet, too. At Net Weaver, they put a ton of incredible practices in place to ensure they are as sustainable as possible, including:
- Only using renewable energy for their servers
- Operating using paper free systems
- Using low energy equipment and LED lighting
- Work from home options for employees as well as car sharing schemes to help reduce travel pollution
- Planting trees every month, to help offset carbon emissions
- Allowing staff to wear what they like, with no fixed dress code, encouraging less use of heating or cooling
I think these examples are a FANTASTIC way of showing how a business can go down a more eco-friendly route yet still operate effectively and have high standards for their products and services. So using a green web host is another excellent way to become a more eco-friendly blogger!
Donate anything you don’t use or won’t use
As I said, influencers are sent a LOT of stuff. I’ve watched YouTubers in the past do P.O Box hauls and I’m just flabbergasted at the amount of things that they’re sent. They only have one face, how on EARTH are they going to use all those products?
If you’re sent a fair few things from brands, there’s no doubt that they’ll start piling up after a while. Instead of throwing anything you haven’t used, donate it instead. To friends, family or worthy causes.
Only accept gifted opportunities you’re really interested in
This is something I’ve really honed in on doing and I’d urge you to do the same. When we first start getting sent things to review or start getting noticed by brands, it can be SO EASY to say yes to everything. I’ve certainly said yes to gifted products in the past that looking back have me thinking, “what the heck?”. Just because something is offered to you, doesn’t mean you HAVE to say yes.
Consider only promoting cruelty-free and/or Vegan products
One thing I’ve tried to really focus on doing is only use and promote cruelty free and/or Vegan products. My main priority is cruelty free. But if they’re Vegan too? Great! Shopping for cruelty free and/or Vegan skincare, make up, hair care and body care is always a good move to make. I currently only shop at Superdrug for my skincare because they do such an incredible range of cruelty free and Vegan products.
Have no-buy months
I think everyone should do this anyway. Blogger or not. But within the blogging industry in particular, I can see why it’s a problem. HAULS. Wanting to grab a new outfit for every Instagram photo. Wanting to be seen with the latest products and latest clothing. Perhaps try creating content around what you already own? It’ll also help you save a ton of money!
Support environmentally friendly businesses
We promote a LOT OF BRANDS on our blogs and social media channels. Not all of them the most environmentally friendly. I know I’ve promoted a fair few in the past which are the furthest from environmentally friendly you can possibly get. Instead, try and use your platform to promote brands which ARE actively sustainably and/or environmentally friendly.
Turn off your electronics as much as you can
Us bloggers… we use a lot of electricity. Laptops, phone chargers, camera chargers, camera equipment – the list goes on. It’s easy to rack up that electricity usage, especially if you’re a part-time or full-time blogger and on your devices for a large majority of the day. This is one I’m going to work on. But make a point of turning off your devices – especially over night! This will also give you a nice break from the screen!
The wonderful thing about blogging is that there’s so much help and advice out there from bloggers who are extremely environmental friendly in their everyday lives. So for people like me, who are just starting to adopt more sustainable practices into their lives, I have places to turn for tips and tricks everywhere I look!