7 Best Eco-Friendly Bedroom Upgrades
for a More Sustainable Home
Scientists have been warning us about global warming for decades now. It is evident that factories, the use of non-renewable energy sources, transportation vehicles, and consumerism (to name a few) have caused irreversible changes to the climate. Luckily, we as consumers can influence the market, like supporting eco-friendly corporations by buying their products, and implementing small changes in our daily lives.
This could also mean decorating our homes with organic products that have a low carbon footprint and recycling materials whenever possible. Here are some tips on how to decorate your bedroom in an eco-friendly way.
Decorate with houseplants
The most organic way to decorate your bedroom is in fact by utilizing natural products – plants. They not only purify the air, but they also have a calming effect. Potted plants and flowers look amazing in any space. You can even keep that minimalist style of your bedroom you love so much, yet still have a few houseplants fill empty corners and soften the look of your room.
A few plants scattered here and there will make your room feel more comfortable and cosier. Depending on your lifestyle, you can find plants that are more high-maintenance or low-maintenance, so they do not feel like a big chore.
Scent your room with natural fragrances
Imagine walking into your bedroom and immediately getting a waft of your favourite aroma that fills the air. Most people use synthetic air fresheners to achieve this, but they are harmful to the environment. Instead, try the organic alternative, such as essential oils, beeswax scented candles or home-made potpourri.
When it comes to essential oils, you can soak cotton balls with your favourite scent and strategically place them around your room. You can even add a few drops of oil to a spray bottle filled with water and spray on bed linens and rugs to freshen them up a bit. Or fill up a bowl with potpourri and put it on your night stand, it is easy to make it yourself.
Get an organic mattress
A good-quality mattress is one of the most important items on your bedroom shopping list. And it is usually the most expensive item. A durable mattress will last you for years, even decades in some cases, which is why you must make sure that it is top-notch. Most mattresses use plastic for their comfort layers, which is detrimental to the environment.
When you first bring home a conventional mattress, the synthetic materials contain off-gas (VOC), which can cause serious health problems. Our advice would be to go to a certified eco-friendly mattress store, since organic mattresses are made with sustainably produced, natural materials like organic cotton, wool, and latex. Trust me, they are worth it.
Choose eco-friendly bedding
Since you are getting an organic mattress, it is only logical to invest in organic, eco-friendly sheets, comforters, and pillows. That way, you’re not defeating the purpose of using an eco-friendly mattress by slapping some chemical-ridden, toxic sheets on top of it. Bamboo sheets are a great alternative to cotton, since bamboo requires less pesticides and grows much more quickly. It also regenerates from the root, so replanting is not necessary.
Buy second-hand furniture
Just think about the production process of making new furniture and how big of an impact it has on the environment. A brand-new chest of drawers, made in China, has a carbon footprint 16 times that of an antique bureau, simply due to the resources used in its manufacture and the emissions created during its journey from factory to end user. This is why second-hand furniture or refurbished antiques are a much greener solution.
You do not have to put a lot of effort into restoring old solid-wood furniture, and you can even DIY it. All you need is a few YouTube videos, stain remover, sanding paper, varnish and a lot of patience. If you do decide to get new furniture, always consider getting locally made pieces, from solid wood, since they last for decades.
Use non-toxic paints and stains
If you are dabbling in DIY, you might be considering repainting your furniture, trim, cabinetry, or walls to freshen up your room, but make sure you are using low-VOC paints and stains. Most manufacturers produce non-toxic latex paints that you can use to freshen up your décor without risking your family’s health. Chalk paint is great for giving your furniture a soft, matte finish, as well as milk paint, which is another amazing non-toxic alternative.
Millions and millions of tons of discarded fabric are accumulating in landfills. These materials are almost always recyclable or reusable. It is easy to transform your old curtains, bed linens, old clothes and other fabrics into pillow cases, furniture upholstery, quilts, and even new curtains or decoration. You can shred your old shirts and jumpers and fill up a pillow case and make a cute throw pillow, or stuffed animal toys for your kids – there are plenty of ideas online.
Small changes can lead to bigger changes. By switching to non-toxic, eco-friendly products, you dictate the market through supply and demand. This can be as simple as getting an organic mattress, or reusing old furniture, thus producing less waste. We as a society need to learn to live on this planet, not in spite of it.
Written by Derek Lotts