We all know how important green living is to our environment, but often find it’s hard to relate that to a personal level. While we can’t all afford to drive an electric car or switch to solar power, there are many small steps we can take to help lower the pollution on our planet. Here are a few ways you can make a difference in your own daily lifestyle:

Recycle. Check with your local refuse company to find out how they want recyclables sorted for pickup and start changing the way you discard your empty packages and containers.

Stop buying plastic. Of course there are some things such as milk that are hard to find in a non-plastic container, but there are many more items you can and should switch. Choose canvas or cardboard over polyurethane, cotton or silk over polyester, and so on. Get in the habit of reading labels so you can make informed choices. A big point here is plastic water bottles: switch to filtered water and use a refillable metal travel mug for your water requirements.

Watch the weed killers. A lawn without weeds looks great, but many plants such as dandelions provide vital food for bees. We are killing our bee population as we kill our unwanted plants, so try to resist that velvety green lawn.

Buy organic food whenever possible. Some non-organics contain pesticides within the food and others are sprayed with pesticides during processing and transport.

Look for health and beauty items that are not animal tested and are natural. A good place to start here is with your makeup routine; a visit to a website such as Sephora that specializes in cosmetics can make it easier to find eco-friendly products.

Take along a bag when you go for a walk and collect some trash along the path. You don’t have to do a lot; just a bit each day will make a difference.

Teach your children to respect the earth! By instilling green habits at a young age you’ll tech them to respect our planet, and they’ll automatically recycle and look for other ways to help the cause.