January 21, 2012

Learning to Live Minimally


My fiance Chris and his sister Lina flabbergast me. Chris has a mechanical pencil that he used from 15 to 24 years old (all of my mechanical pencils get lost or break within a year) and Lina has shoes that she still uses from middle school (now she is in college). How do they do it? This isn’t an anomaly for them, pretty much everything they buy they use up as much as possible and everything they own is in pristine condition. I admire it so much.

Since I was little I’ve been trained to buy buy buy. When something is on sale, buy 12 (even if you don’t like the product that much). If I see a gorgeous nail polish I should buy it even though I have two polishes along the same shade range already. Clearly, I need more then five similar eyeshadow sets even though I barely wear eyeshadow. I’ve never known anything else.

That is just stupid behavior. I have been so wasteful my whole life! Starting in 2011 I have been making strides to change my spending habits and how I use my products.

I’m going to do my best to live more minimally. I’ll be finishing up all the current products I have before I purchase more items in that same category. I’ll find alternative uses for items I have stored up.

Then, I’ll have to learn how to deal with only one or two products in each category. I can’t have all of this junk! Hopefully I can find a lot of multi-use products as well to minimize the space I need.

My minimal journey has started as more of a way to produce less waste and to want less. Each minimal journey is different, embrace yours.

Here is a list of posts related to my living minimally campaign:

Introductory Post
Alternative Uses for Shampoo and Body Wash
Alternative Uses for Conditioner
Recycle Your Empty Beauty Products
Learning to Live Minimally, Update #1
Donate Your Used Makeup
2012 New Year’s Resolutions
January 2013 Buying Ban
I Don’t Use Shampoo
How-to Turn Bar Soap into Liquid Soap (A great way to get rid of your stash of hotel bar soaps)
The First Steps
Fall Empties and Learning to Live Minimally Update
Decluttering my fitness clothing and PJ tops
5 Easy Ways to Live More Minimally

A big part of my Learning to Live Minimally lifestyle is replacing other products with eco-friendly and DIY projects, here are some of my favorite posts in the series.

How to Wash Your Face with Oatmeal
DIY Face Toner with Apple Cider Vinegar
DIY Moisturizer
DIY Hot Oil Hair Treatment
The 20 Beauty Uses of Coconut Oil
The Honest Company – Honest All-Natural Deodorant Review
Preserve Shaver – A Razor Made Out of Yogurt Cups
Why I Switched from Tampons to Menstrual Cups
DIY Three Ingredient Cleanser

For everyone interested in being more minimal and helpful to the world, I also recommend buying furniture used through garage sales (80-90% of my home is filled with garage sale finds or hand-me-downs) and purchasing clothing through services like ThredUp and Plato’s Closet.

It’s a work in progress.