Who doesn't love some eco-friendly, vegan, travel essentials for their wishlist! At Travel For Change, I buy products that are low-cost, high-quality and as good for the environment as possible. If you are in the market for a new favourite travel item, check out my latest Top 10 must-haves, and see if something stands out for you!
Sustainable products offer a great return on investment because you can reuse them, travel with them or keep them with you at home. They also make fantastic gift ideas. Looking for a way to spread the eco-friendly, low-waste, lifestyle with your family or friends? Green gifts are perfect for everyone no matter if they are travelling or not.
Researching what to pack is time-consuming. What do you even look for? Zero or low chemical content in washing products? Quality? Cruelty-free? Vegan? Fairtrade? Palm-oil-free?
With so many labels the responsibility of shopping sustainably can be overwhelming even for experienced eco travellers. In this guide, I highlight key ways to check your products as well as list some of my favourites to save you time and money.
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Buying local eco-friendly products shortens the supply chain, the products have less packaging, they don’t require long-distance transportation energy, and it supports small businesses. Check if your local area has a weekend market selling organic products or if the local stores offer plastic-free alternatives.
Natural Food Stores and Organic Groceries Stores usually have an aisle dedicated to toiletries and personal care items.
Look For Certified Products
Ask questions about the products that you purchase. Even if the powerful marketing words state that the products are eco-friendly, organic, green or sustainable, it is not necessarily authentic. Product certification is a step in the right direction.
Check for Organic Certification, Vegan Certification and Cruelty-Free Certification.
Try Zero-Packaging Toiletries
There are some delicious zero-packaging toiletries on the market, shop around for a zesty solid shampoo bar, gorgeous essential oil body wash and facial soap bars and fresh feeling solid deodorants. This will save the planet by using minimal or no plastic in the packaging. Choose products with organic ingredients to make even more of your purchasing power.
Purchase a reusable tin to store your new soap bars for travelling. How about trying a bamboo toothbrush? The toothbrush handle is made from bamboo, and the bristles are plant-based. Ensure to research the content of the products you use. Did you know that many of the exfoliating facial washes contain microscopic plastic beads?
By using only organic plant-based products you can ensure that the product is safe for your skin and the water system it washes into.
Read The Ingredients
It's a good idea to start to understand what you are absorbing into your body through your skin. You can look for the little bunny on the label of beauty merchandise that denotes that the products are beauty free; these products also tend to be gentler on the skin. Some terminology can sound terrifying, but are actually very good for your skin!
For example, ferulic acid is an antioxidant made from the seeds of apples and oranges, which helps with anti-ageing and tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate is vitamin C, which, when applied topically, brightens dull skin and banishes wrinkles. To avoid having to check each ingredient, the best option is to just go vegan and organic.
Why? These products will likely have something on the packaging that says they are Free From Parabens, Silicones, Dyes and Animal Products. This eliminates the majority of ingredients which harm the earth.
A Certified Vegan product is often created with the intention to eliminate animal by-products, animal testing and environmental damage.
Support Brands That Give Back
Recently, Viva La Body and Orangutan Alliance joined forces and created a limited edition soap that is palm-oil-free, cruelty-free, vegan and is planet-friendly. Every purchase is a plastic-free alternative, and at least one tree will be planted in the world's most diverse rainforest in Sumatra.
This is the last remaining place on earth where critically endangered Sumatran elephants, rhinoceros, tigers and orangutans co-exist with over hundreds of mammals and bird species. There are numerous brands out on the market that works in partnership with organisations that offset carbon emissions or who donate a percentage of their sales to a good cause.
Save A Tree
New books are not convenient for travelling. Paper books have a larger impact on the environment so why not take the digital route and use a Kindle. Not only can you store hundreds of books on one device, but there are also many special offers available.
Shop KINDLE OASIS with adjustable warm light.
E-Books and podcasts are incredible for travelling and you can download and update new books and series as often as you like!
Do you really need to buy something new? Have a good look and see what you can purchase second-hand, maybe make something yourself, buy from local 'community' markets that sell hand-made products, borrow, swap and re-use recycled products to prevent them going into landfill sites.
Think about the journey of a 'product' and then rethink, refuse, reuse and recycle; together, let's try and stop the 'product' turning into rubbish.
Wear Organic Sustainable Clothing
The fast fashion industry is well known for creating a cycle of clothing that once worn lands up in the trash. The system is broken and sadly, local communities near these facilities suffer the most. Consider organic cotton and linens, sustainably sourced wood, bamboo, mushroom and coconut fibres instead.
Natural products are better for your skin, and clothing is cooler to wear.
Give Green Gifts
Choose to give green-goodies to your friends and family. Be mindful when giving a gift and ask yourself how it has, or how will it impact the planet. Who made it? Is it built to last? Is it made from recycled materials? Is it locally made or has it travelled thousands of miles to reach the recipient? Is it made from ethical materials? Green gifts are becoming more accessible and easier to find.
Here are My Top 10 Eco-Friendly Travel Essentials
Perfectly stylish and safe for the environment.
Shop bread, bulk goods, produce and more with these beautiful eco-bags.
Ideal for the farmers market on the weekend.
Reusable cotton rounds are a simple eco swap.
Gentle to remove make-up from sensitive skin.
A lovely gift idea with a decorative storage travel tin.
Bring your essential oils with you when you travel.
Bamboo lid, glass bottle, safely store oils and perfume.
Ideal for a home business or home-made gift.
Sustainable non-slip yoga mat.
Align For Me outlines for perfect poses.
PVC free, biodegradable in 1-5 years, non-toxic.
Unique designs to recognise your passport.
Crafted with premium quality vegan leather.
Features card slots for safekeeping and document pockets.
Sustainable canvas bag to store personal items.
Travel friendly with secure zips and pockets.
Thick eco fabric is leakproof and washable.
Tea infuser travel bottle, protective soft sleeve, tea leaf spoon,
tea leaf infuser tin.
Plastic-free eco bundle that is lightweight and safe.
Double-wall insulation for both hot/cold beverages.
A travel-friendly therapy eye mask to reduce puffy eyes, headache,
sinus pain, stress and fatigue.
Made with eco-beads that are non-toxic and fragrance-free.
Warm in the microwave or cool in the freezer for maximum benefits.
Natural food wrap is plastic-free, beeswax free and reusable.
Wrap sandwiches, shape over any bowl or container, around produce.
Pack them with you when you travel, for a BBQ or road trip.
If you love to travel and cook this carry bag is ideal for easy storage.
Pack and label 6 of your favourite herbs and spices, salt, pepper even sugar.
Great for camping, picnics, road trips, van life or as an eco-friendly gift!
Single-use coffee cups are way out of fashion and Huskee cups are in.
Clean, minimalist, natural design made to keep your coffee or tea hot.
Large 12oz cup made from 100% recycled organic materials.
Shopping for eco-friendly goods is a learning experience, and it takes some good old-fashioned detective work. You'll learn how to recognize unfriendly ingredients, be able to spot the adorable 'cruelty-free' bunny at ten paces and hunt down plastic-free essentials.
It is actually pretty easy to be kinder to the planet, and overall, it's fun. For online shopping, you can also check for browser extensions that support a good cause.
To get started you can learn about Honest and add it to your browser.