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With Earth Day approaching on April 22, there’s no better time to take a closer look at those seemingly harmless daily activities that may actually be leaving a big carbon footprint. But going green doesn’t have to mean giving up all your earthly possessions: New products are making it easier than ever to be mindful of your impact. Read on for five of our favorite eco-conscious swaps.

RELATED: 8 Great Places to Shop Sustainably in NYC

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Go Metal

The theme of Earth Day 2018 is to end plastic pollution and there’s truly no easier way to contribute than to stop using plastic straws. Forever. Can’t fathom your iced coffee without one? Pick up a pack of reusable metal straws (and, hey, a cute carrying case while you’re at it!) and you’ll always be prepared.

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Say No to Nuts

Alt-milks are a big business in 2018, but nut varieties like almond use a staggering amount of water in their creation. Make the switch to an oat milk like Oatly, which uses 85 to 90 percent less water during production than a similar almond version. Bonus: Minimal pesticides are used to grow oats, making it a safer choice, too.

Rent The Runway dresses
Rent the Runway

Rethink Retail

The retail industry is the second-largest polluter in the world (right behind oil). And the average woman throws away 82 pounds of clothing per year. So before you buy a few new cocktail dresses for summer wedding season (that, let’s face it, you’ll wear only once or twice) consider borrowing a frock from Rent the Runway or scouring vintage clothing app Depop for one-of-a-kind finds. 

RELATED: The Ultimate A to Z Guide to Recycling Everything in NYC

Axiology lipsticks
Axiology

Pucker Up

Making the switch to clean beauty products? Good for you! While you’re swapping out your conventional lipsticks for organic versions, make sure you’re also choosing options that are sustainable. We love the colors and formula from Axiology, which eschews rainforest-killing palm oil from its recipe and also uses recycled paper boxes made from a woman-owned boutique in Bali.

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Ditch the Down

Hygge practitioners, take note: Purchasing a down comforter is actually pretty terrible for the environment. Instead, opt for a sustainable option like Buffy, which is made from the wood pulp of eucalyptus trees. Each blanket saves 1,000 gallons of water (and a dozen birds) as compared with the standard down variety. (And this should go without saying, but if you’re getting rid of an old comforter, donate it to people or animals in need.)

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