Although I’m sharing the things I decided to stop buying since discovering decluttering, I’m just going to start by saying that I’m not a minimalist.
I mean, you won’t walk into my house and wonder where the STUFF is. There’s still plenty of it – I have two small kids! But we’re still in the process of reducing our excess.
Which is particularly challenging when the three people I live with just. want. more. stuff.
So either we’re just at the start of our minimalism journey or maybe the end and it didn’t work. It remains to be seen I suppose!
Anyway, all that said, we are much more conscious of ‘waste’ these days and we want our kids to learn that we don’t need all of the things. We want to teach them to be more sustainable and for us to lead by example.
So whilst we’re not perfect, these are a few of the things we simply no longer buy. And I’m not telling you not to buy them – that’s up to you.
This list is the start of our journey – the quick fixes that have kicked off a bigger drive for our family:
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18 Things we Chose to Stop Buying
1. Plastic bags
Reducing the plastic we bring into our home is a massive work in progress and we’re very new to it. But now, we don’t buy plastic bags – we just take our reusable totes with us.
2. Makeup palettes
I used to be a little obsessed with makeup palettes that included products for the whole face. In fact, at the Duty Free shop in the airport it was always the first thing I headed to.
But what a waste they were for me! My skin is darker and none catered for that – the foundation, blush and bronzer were always way too pale. The lipsticks were bright red and NOT ME.
Same goes for eyeshadows – as much as it appealed to ‘create a whole look’ using all 4+ shades, I didn’t do it – I’d maybe use two of them max.
So, as pretty as they are, I now only buy individual sizes of the things I need.
3. Make up remover pads
Instead of cotton remover pads, I’ve been using Face Halo.
I use them in rotation and chuck them in the wash.
I’ve also waiting on a delivery of smaller washable pads I can use for toner etc.
4. Home decor
I’m talking about the unnecessary kind! I used to be the biggest collector of decorative crap but I didn’t often think through what was buying.
Now I’m much more considered when it comes to buying decorative items – and I’ll really think about if it has a place and USE in our home before I buy it.
Did you question whether cushions needs its own category? Because, it does in this house! I’ve spent a fortune over the years on cushions and I can now truly say we do not need any more! I mean, one day they might need replacing but I’m talking about the unnecessary purchases of pretty cushions when they are NOT needed. (even though,…cushions!)
Because…sober! Oh my word it’s saved me so much money and you can find out about the health and other benefits of being sober here.
As many of you know, I’ve just written a book about my journey to and out of alcohol addiction. Click here to find out more about the book, “Less Wine More Time”.
7. Bottled Water
Thanks to my SodaStream, I make my own sparkling water now and add natural flavours to it or drink as is.
8. Plastic storage
Storage items were my obsession for some time too – but I no longer buy any and instead use plastic-free storage such as EcoPockets – find out more about EcoPockets here.
Related: My Pantry Declutter
9. Plastic lunch boxes
When our current lunchboxes have worn out, we will look to replace with a plastic free option – possibly metal. I would love your ideas.
10. Plastic straws
We stopped buying these year ago and instead use silicone or paper straws……or none!
We rarely buy toys for the kids – not because were mean! But because everyone else does and the house would be overun by them. The kids are spoiled rotten on birthdays and throughout the year and so if we buy anything for them these days, it’s educational.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not telling you to not buy toys for your kids! But mine have more than enough and they really don’t need more. I sometimes get asked to do toy reviews and turn down 99% of them for this reason.
12. Fast fashion items
As I’ve gotten older, finding out how to stop shopping for clothes has been an easier mission for sure. But I no longer buy clothing, accessories or jewellery that meet a current fashion trend.
I’m not prepared to waste money on items I’ll wear only once or can only wear to one specific occasion. These days, I’d rather spend my money on items that ‘go with’ more, can be multipurpose and will be re-worn for years to come.
13. Heeled shoes
Oh, how I hate heels. I’ve never been able to stand, let alone walk, in them. And at my age, I think I now know that it isn’t worth trying. And it’s a big waste of money to buy any more.
This goes for bags too – I used to have a little addiction to designer handbags but no more. These days I don’t buy cheaper bags either as I have a good few in my wardrobe already to suit any occasion. If I don’t, I’ll borrow from a friend.
I haven’t bought CDs etc in decades but these days, my Spotify subscription allows me to listen to whatever I want without having to spend money on singles or albums.
Same goes – I rarely buy physical books because it suits my lifestyle much more to listen to audiobooks on Audible. Start for free below!
Ditto – I have Netflix!
Buying magazines used to be another addiction and whilst I didn’t subscribe to many, I looked forward to buying the same ones each month. Until I realised that any content I wanted to read could be found, for free, online! Plug: feel free to subscribe to my FREE blog here.
The Things I am Stopping Buying in the Future
Next up, I’m going to be replacing items such as toothbrushes, aerosols and more food storage to use more environmentally friendly options.
Things to Stop Buying Summary
How to stop shopping for the things we don’t really need is an ongoing practice for sure and we’re only just at the beginning.
I’m so inspired by others who live so well with less and, each week, we’re finding new things we no longer need to keep or buy again.
Decluttering our house is really helping with this! Find things that have been stuffed into a cupboard for years and never used. The things that we really shouldn’t have purchased in the first place.
I want to stop spending money on these things and more. We buy things we don’t need and it’s such a bad example to the kids. And most of the time, we should be happy with what we have.
As we continue to learn how to waste less, I’ll share more ideas for how to stop spending money on unnecessary things.
Do you have any tips on how to stop buying things you don’t need? What do you no longer buy?
Biome has a beautiful and practical range of eco-friendly products – find out more here.
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- 5 Ways to teach Kids to Waste Less
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I hope the things I chose to stop buying gives you some ideas on how you might be more sustainable.