I didn’t get a chance to do a May recap and before I knew it we were at the end of June which means I’m officially halfway through #noshop19. This point will be extra ramble-y and may not make sense but I’ve had so many reflections floating around my brain lately and I feel like sharing. #noshop19 has changed my life. In a deeply impactful way. I realized this the other way when hanging up some laundry and realizing that I can’t remember the last time I had to cram something in a drawer or search for an open hanger.
The simple version of my normal recap format is that I just keep selling things and not buying replacements. After the messiness of April I was worried the project might dwindle in entirely but somehow I felt so empowered after realizing my tendencies to buy material things when stressed that I got my head right back in the game and haven’t looked back. In May I bought one shirt and some new underwear and sold/passed along at least five times that. In June I bought absolutely nothing and I haven’t even thought about it. I bought Nell around $100 worth of summer items from H&M conscious line to get her through camp and summer and other than that haven’t shopped for her either. I’ve been tempted here or there when browsing blogs online but then I think about that money going toward a mini kitchen remodel or growing our savings account and it’s been really easy to click out and move on with my day. Definitely a good thing since I couldn’t even tell you what one of those items was - meaning I definitely didn’t mean it.
This project has definitely spanned beyond it’s original intent. I’m not only selling things I don’t love anymore - I’m also selling things that don’t make me feel good. Luxury items I bought because subconsciously I thought they’d make me feel better about myself, jewelry that’s sat tarnishing in my jewelry drawer even though I love it because I simply feel cluttered when I wear it. It’s extended to my beauty cabinet, where I’ve noted some big surprises in terms of how much product you ACTUALLY use. In the last six months the only cosmetics I have replaced are deodorant (once) shampoo and conditioner (once) face wash (once) and mascara (once). That’s it. I did buy two new serums but I’d used up at least 3-4 by then. To be fair I ran out of foundation but had my summer shade left over from last year so I just started using that - otherwise I would’ve had to buy new foundation. I found myself starting to get a little product obsessed again when I started getting monthly facials but thankfully it’s been all samples and I recognized the behavior before I starting buying again.
We’ve also started to really change the way we live at home as this mentality of sustainability becomes more of our “norm.” We’ve eliminated almost all single-use plastic in our home and use stainless steel straws and reusable cups for both Nell and ourselves. We’ve started reading labels on our cleaning products and have swapped to Thieves cleaner in refillable bottles (not a fan of the Young Living model but I don’t mind supporting my friend and my god Thieves is like the gateway drug!) and this natural stain remover (and this one for us) recommended by a friend (and mom of three!) I actually love of lot of things from the Puracy brand including their hand soap and dishsoap. Also love that we can grab it at Target! I’ve also cleaned out some of the nice glass containers from old hand soap from Homegoods so I can refill them vs. rebuying more plastic whenever we need more. I’m hoping Puracy will come out with refill sizes soon but in the meantime I’ll probably make my own with Castille soap and some lemon oil. I know this sounds complicated but it’s actually 30x less stressful than running to the store (and recycling bin) every time we use up something! We’ve been diffusing oils vs. burning candles lately as well and I will begrudgingly admit we LOVE them. Come fall I’ll want my cozy candles back but I’ll source local natural wax brands made without artificial fragrance. We’ve also used this laundry detergent since Nell was born and now we use it as a household. My friend is an environmental scientist and sent me down a rabbit hole of product info regarding safe detergents - this one has been both the safest I’ve found and the most effective! You can find it at Whole Foods and we buy the giant bottle to reduce plastic use. We aren’t perfect by any means and still have our non-”clean” vices (I’m looking at you, mascara brands!) but I’m happy to see even larger brands like CVS and big cosmetics leaning in to better ways of making things. C teases that we’ve gotten “very crunchy” lately with our oils and natural cleaners and straws but he’s really into it, too! Related, I have some chronic health issues and it’s given me a lot of relief to feel like I’m creating an environment for Nell that is absent of many environmental hazards I (unknowingly) have always lived with.
#NoShop19 is also changing the way I look at decorating our home. I’ve been really inspired by my friend Liz’s gorgeous home (pictured above) and found that by hunting around my own house I’ve found plenty of things I can repurpose in different ways to totally reimagine our space with minimal purchases. We’ve redone our dining room, our pink bathroom, and most of our master bedroom and only purchased a vintage rug, a super affordable sisal rug, a shower curtain, and an $80 light fixture.
In general I also just feel like a much happier person. I like what I wear and I’m not stressed about what I think I “need” next. I feel a sense of contentment that is new to me and I don’t think I will ever go back to my old buying habits.
Please feel free to leave any questions in the comments - would love to hear how you’re all doing on your own journey!