So you've gone zero waste, sustainable, whatever it is. It's new, exciting, but also inredibly frustrating. Or maybe you haven't even delved into the world but are curious. You might have been doing this for a very long time but are stuck in a rut. Well no matter where you are on your sustainable living journey this post might be for you

Today I'm talking to five sustainable living bloggers about their experiences, what they love, what they found hardest, and what inspired them to do this in the first place! Because although sustainable living can be rewarding and worthwhile, it is also incredibly frustrating at times too.

The bloggers I'm talking to today are Besma from Curiously Conscious, Amyleigh from Northern Blood, Loz from Positively Loz, Elen from Welsh Wanderer, Abi from @abichristinaa, and I'll put some of my own thoughts down too! Take it from people who write about this stuff on a daily basis, it ain't always easy.

Q: Why did you start "Sustainable Living"

Loz: I’ve always been interested in helping the environment. At university I had a reusable water bottle and travel mug in my bag, and I even did a project on Ocean Plastic! But it was only when I got my first apartment with my partner that I really attempted to start living sustainably. And as I got to know the local businesses, I realised that we had a lot around us that supported the environment, like The Refill Market. Having so much at my fingertips really helped my passion to grow, and as we settled into the apartment, we settled into a new, more sustainable way of living! 

I don’t think it’s fair that we are living on such a beautiful, natural coincidence, that gives us so much, and a lot of us just aren’t giving back. We’ll soon run out of the Earth’s resources if we don’t, which will be detrimental to both us as humans and the other species inhabiting her.

AbiI heard about sustainable living through ethical fashion! I remember watching a video by a YouTuber, Kristen Leo, called Fast Fashion Explained in Under 5 Minutes and it really opened my eyes to how important it is to take steps into buying ethical and sustainable items.  When I fully understood why sustainability and ethical consuming is so important for the environment I chose to stop buying from fast fashion brands, reduce my single plastic usage and buy items that I knew would last me a very long time (e.g. a metal water bottle, metal straws etc).

I do understand that the main issue is, in fact, oil companies and other big corporations contributing to most of pollution (which is why I also aim to join protests to pressure these companies to reduce their harm to the environment). However, as fast fashion is the second biggest polluter in the world, I believe that it is also the consumer's responsibility to not buy from these brands and invest in sustainable and ethical clothing or buy second hand!

Besma: I started on my journey to living more sustainably after moving to Paris as part of my degree. The culture shock, delicious food, and big focus on provenance made me question how unsustainably I had been living previously! I knew I had to make a change, so I documented everything on my blog.

Elen: I've always had an interest in the environment and what was going on around the world so that's really what sparked my interest in living more sustainably. It started off small with reusable bottles and metal straws, but then I really started to broaden my horizons and learn more in-depth about the climate crisis. That's what really got the ball rolling and here I am now! It's been about a year since I 'properly' started sustainable living, but it's not a far cry from the lifestyle I led previously. 

Amyleigh: I started sustainable living because my shopping habit was getting out of hand. Buying clothes from Asos more than twice a week and being in first name basis with the Hermes delivery guy wasn’t productive. I started to read more about the effects of fast fashion and that’s what spurred it all on.

Izzy: I went travelling when I was 18 and it really hit me how consumption here in the UK was negatively impacting those on the other-side of the world and I wanted to make my negative impact as low as possible. It started with ethical fashion but ethical and sustainability communities are interlinked so it grew from there.

Q: What are things you've found difficult?

Amyleigh: Knowing you can’t just do it all overnight has been quite hard because you want to perfect it from the start and it’s not possible - I’m still making a lot of changes 4 years later! You also have to do a lot of research and explore different brands that aren’t as readily available as those that you see on the high street - from household cleaning products to clothing to skincare.

Izzy: The fact I can't do it all, there's always a limit and I often feel guilty for not being able to do enough. But there has to be systematic changes in industry and government in order for individuals like myself to keep taking steps forward which is why I'm getting more into activism and campaigning. The world i Life just gets in the way sometimes and it can be frustrating.

Elen: Mainly, it's been difficult to remember to bring my reusables with me. I'm the queen of disorganisation so often leave the house with my phone and bank card in my pocket and that's it. I've resorted to sticking everything I might need in the bottom of my bag and then making myself take that with me everywhere just in case. It's been working so far!

Besma: When I first started, sustainable products were a lot more scarce, and sustainability wasn’t really being talked about (other than CSR). I’m so happy to see this change over the last few years, with sustainability being championed by so many people, and being a focus in both business and government.

Abi: Going from buying many cheap clothes from Primark to completely not buying clothes from there at all was probably what I found most difficult. Finding pieces to invest in is also difficult because as a student, I don't have a lot of money to spend on expensive pieces that are sustainable and ethical.

I'm also doing Veganuary and it's difficult finding different recipes that I won't get bored of eating!

Loz: Honestly, it’s a little selfish, but health can really get in the way. I’d love to live a vegan lifestyle for instance, but struggling with IBS has meant that I’m having to be really careful with what I eat at the minute. I’m having to learn what I can and can’t eat and pretty much develop a brand-new diet. 

Mental health has also been an issue; sometimes I’m just not motivated enough to cook from scratch, and getting a takeaway, although not great for the environment, is the only way I’ll eat. It’s a work in progress though, and I know that the better I take care of myself, the better I can take care of the environment!

Q: What do you enjoy most about living more sustainably?

Amyleigh: I feel like I’m doing my bit. I’m a new mum and I want my little boy to grow up being considerate of the planet we call home so I want to set a good example. It’s important that the earth and people who work to make an honest living aren’t taken advantage of and knowing I’m not contributing to that - especially not on the scale I used to - is a good feeling. 

Izzy: Just feeling like I have a little bit of control, knowing that I'm doing my own little bit to help the planet. I also learn so much from the comunities I'm in, not just about sustainable living but about people and the community is generally so uplifting and supportive.

Loz: I’ve met so many lovely people through sustainable living, be that like-minded people on the internet to people who run sustainable businesses. I’ve inadvertently become a member of this wonderfully kind and creative community, where people share tips and advice and support each other, all for the benefit of each other, animals, and the planet. Not to mention, I’ve made friends for life through my blog and using Instagram to share my love for sustainability. And that’s before we talk about the fact that living sustainably is helping the planet!

Elen: For me, it's a much less stressful way of life. When I wasn't living sustainably and was still buying fast fashion, I would be so stressed. It was always "what can I buy next? I NEED a new dress where can I get one QUICK?!" I'm a self-confessed shopping addict so getting over that and focusing on bigger/better things has been a very positive experience for me.

Besma: I love knowing everything I own has a positive backstory, supporting people and planet in a caring way.

Abi: It has saved me a lot of money! Investing in things that I knew would last me has saved me from frequently buying the same things again and again. My most favourite item I have invested in is bamboo cotton pads! I used to buy cotton pads from Primark for £1 almost every week but since I bought a pack of 8 reusable bamboo cotton pads (which were only about £6), I have saved so much money and contributed to less synthetic cotton being polluted.

Q:Any Advice for a newbie?

Besma: Look at your habits and routines, and work out what small steps you can take to be more sustainable. Something as simple as getting a reusable cup, bag, or bottle can save on hundreds of disposable ones - and the same can be said for changing to a renewable energy provider, switching your bank to one that doesn’t support oil or arms, and shopping second-hand. Plus the feeling of doing something in a more eco-friendly way is addictive! Hopefully your small changes will have a domino effect, and soon you’ll be an expert!

Abi: It is difficult to live sustainably. However, sudden lifestyle changes are always difficult, whether it's cutting out buying fast fashion or going vegan or vegetarian, we all go through difficult times where we think we're not doing enough to be sustainable. My advice I would give for a newbie is: remember that taking small steps is better than not taking any. It's really nice to have a community of people who you can reach out to for help or encouragement and getting involved in these challenges would definitely help you find that community!

Loz: Just do it! And don’t beat yourself up if you find yourself ‘slipping up’. Remember that even the smallest sustainable step is one that is heading in the right direction, and it will always make a positive difference! Also, don’t put sustainability before your health – you’re the most important thing in your life, the planet is a close second! Don’t feel guilty for that either!

Izzy: Small steps, find something you're really interested in and start there. It's easy to get overwhelmed and end up frustrated but if you go slow and steady you're always doing better than when you started! Also finding a lovely community of supportive people is helpful too, follow people online that inspire you and make sure you keep your feed diverse too.

Amyleigh: You can’t do it all! Choose an area you think you could tackle first that would be the easiest transition. Change your spending habits on fashion or swap items in your skincare such as choosing reusable cotton pads or flannels instead of wipes. Even eating less meat each week is a positive step! Do little and gradually and it will soon build up to be a lot.

Elen: I'd say start small, and start slow. Figure out what you use the most that can be seamlessly replaced with a sustainable alternative in your life. For me, it was plastic bottled water. Don't buy eco friendly alternatives if you know you won't use them in the long run. For example, I regret buying metal straws because I never really use them, there just isn't a need for them in my life. Be picky with how you invest in your sustainable items.

And that is that for now! I hope you've found reading about these bloggers journey's into sustainability helpful or inspiring in some way. Let me know your thoughts in the comments and I will be back very soon sharing a video about the things I find most challenging about sustainable living.

Thank you so much for the bloggers who got involved for answering my questions and go anc check them all out! I enjoy all of their content and it's deffo worth a read.

Enjoy this post? Help support this site by sharing this post, following me on instagram, or buying me a Coffee.