We are pleased to present you with this guest post by Kay Pascale who is a writer and blogger from Durham, NC. When she’s not writing, she loves to travel, cook, and go on runs with her new pup always having sustainability in mind… Here you go:

If you want to take care of the environment and be more conscientious of your waste, there are many ways you can get involved. If you’re ready to get on the path to being more green in your daily lifestyle, take a look at these top ways that you may be wasteful without even realizing it and how you can change your habits.

1. Not Recycling In Your Bathroom

If you’re like most people, you probably have a waste bin in your bathroom that collects all your waste. However, did you know that lots of your bathroom waste can be recycled? Those toilet paper rolls are one of the most thrown out items in your bathroom, but they can easily be recycled. Take the small step to create a separate waste bin specifically for recyclable waste in your bathroom.

2. Buying New Clothes

With so many stores around that offer heavily discounted clothing, it’s tempting to go on a shopping spree every other weekend to get the best sales around. If you look in your closet now, you may even notice that some clothes that still have the price tag on them. To prevent this from happening, try and consider being more conscientious when you go out shopping.

Invest in more environmentally friendly and higher-quality items that will last longer or shop second-hand products instead of buying new. Then, when you’re ready to clean out your closet, try and make some money on your clothes at a second-hand store or donate them to charity instead of throwing your used clothing out.

3. Inefficiently Using Electricity

Some utility companies will send a recap of how much energy you used in the past month and which appliances use the most energy. Take this feedback into consideration and make simple energy-saving changes around the home, like turning off unused electrical devices (think: your television and lighting), doing full loads of laundry, and keeping the thermostat turned up when you’re away.

4. Not Being Smart When Shopping for Food

Keep in mind that you can shop for food that’s sustainable and environmentally friendly. Try and keep an eye out for food that’s fair trade, grass-fed, and organic. Additionally, how you shop for food plays a big part in how much waste goes back into the environment. Instead of using plastic grocery bags, invest in a reusable shopping bag. You can also forego the plastic containers that hold produce by shopping at your local farmer’s market.

5. Cooking Dinner for More than One

Make sure that when you cook your food, you cook for what you’re going to eat so that you don’t waste the food you make. If you do have leftovers, consider that a great way to prep a quick and easy lunch for the next day. Try meal planning on Sundays and prep your meals for the entire week so you know how much food you should buy.

6. Using Plastic

Did you know that 75% of trash is recyclable? Now consider how much trash you throw out that’s recycled. According to House Method, drinking from plastic water bottles, using plastic straws, and even buying plastic containers from the grocery store can all contribute to plastic waste. Try and take the small extra step of rinsing out plastic products to be recycled and compost as much as you can.

7. Dining In Restaurants

Not many want to keep the food you don’t finish, but consider the fact that your food will be tossed in the trash if it isn’t eaten or taken to go. Be sure to only order what you can eat to save on waste and money, and if you don’t finish your food, consider taking your own container to the restaurant to pack up your leftovers.

8. Driving Around Town

Driving around town to run errands is probably the more efficient route, but the amount of emissions that come from your vehicle is one of the biggest killers of the ozone layer. Consider ride-sharing when you need to run errands and be sure to get all your essentials in one trip, instead of going out multiple times. For quick runs to your nearby store, if the weather is great, attach a basket to your bike and go for a nice ride or stroll.