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Wednesday 15 March 2017

Give Me Five: ways to make my life more sustainable

GIVE ME FIVE:
WAYS TO MAKE MY LIFE MORE SUSTAINABLE

As part of our Material World campaign, we're delving deeper into the materiality of our clothes, as well as reflecting more broadly on what sustainability means to us in the modern world. There are some simple steps we can all take to make our lifestyles – as well as our fashion choices – more sustainable. Read on for our top tips on small changes that can have a big impact – both personally as well as ecologically – compiled in collaboration with Alex McIntosh, creative director at sustainability consultancy Create Sustain.

Maje denim jumpsuit and Rag & Bone trainers
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1. Your denim wash reconsidered

Next time you stuff your jeans into the washing machine after just one wear, take note of this interesting fact: research suggests that if we wash our jeans every 10 wears, each pair would use up to 75 per cent less water in their lifetime. Given just a single pair of jeans can use up to 11,000 litres of water during its lifecycle, that’s some saving – and a simple way to make a difference. Oh, and don’t forget this top tip: putting jeans in the freezer eliminates odours.

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2. Life in plastic, not so fantastic

Predictions suggest that by 2050 there could be more plastic in the oceans than fish. Selfridges' beauty halls only stock products that are free from plastic microbeads and, last year, we removed all single-use plastic bottles from across our stores. Quite simply, we're committed to stopping plastic pollution in every way we can. An easy step that everyone can take is to carry a reusable water bottle or a Keepcup for your takeaway coffee – one simple gesture to reducing plastic bottle and lid waste.

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3. Season's eatings

It's true to say, eating in season may mean you need to be a little more creative with your cooking, but a little more consideration of the natural food cycle can make a real impact. Our latest Selfridges London restaurant pop-up wastED is a great example of how to push food boundaries and get inspired. When it comes to the carnivores among us, research suggests that if you stop eating or cut down on red meat, not only is it good for your health, but it could also reduce your individual carbon footprint by up to a half. #meatfreemondays

Research suggests that if you stop eating or cut down on red meat, it could reduce your individual carbon footprint by up to a half.

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4. Let's take this outside

The Office for National Statistics conducted a survey in 2012 that suggested those who work outdoors are healthier and happier. Put simply: getting back to nature is good for us all. So make time every day to go outside – ditch the desk for a lunchtime stroll or the comfort of the car for a good old stretch of the legs. And if you want to take this a step further, the Wildlife Trust, which maintains nature reserves all over the UK, is continually looking for volunteers to help them preserve and maintain these important habitats.

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5. Slow travel

2017 is the year to explore the art of slow travel – which is what exactly, we hear you ask? Well, most of our holidays involve booking a flight and a hotel and not much else, but, we think, travelling can be about so much more: seeing and devouring new landscapes, experiencing new cultures. You can't do this from the air, or, for that matter, from the sun lounger. From the TGV to the Trans-Siberian railway, try taking a holiday by train. It's calmer and, yes, slower, but it will give you a genuine sense of connection to the place you are visiting.