Who we are and why we do what we do…
I’m Eloise and I started The Path Less Wasteful after my family and I began trying to live more sustainably, make ethical choices and reduce our plastic usage, following a relocation to the South West. I wanted to use what I had learnt so far in my personal journey to live plastic free to create a business that put my values in to practice. Living sustainably and looking after our planet is something I am very passionate about. I wanted to show everyone that being vegan and living more sustainably doesn’t have to be expensive, or difficult or boring. It’s amazing and it feels amazing to know you’re living by doing the least harm you can to the planet, animals and fellow humans too! That’s why I wanted to start my own ethical lifestyle shop, providing vegan and eco-friendly options for others who want to take steps towards a more sustainable lifestyle, whether big or small.
It was shortly after the birth of our eldest that we made the decision to move to my parents’ home county of Cornwall. It was due to this and becoming parents, that we began to question aspects of our lifestyle and we chose to go vegan (which is one of the best changes you can make to reduce your impact on the environment). Following this we began to realise the impact of modern lifestyles on our planet. We decided to try to be as environmentally aware as we possibly can. Making changes to our lifestyle wherever and whenever we can, by cutting out plastic, switching to reusables and buying sustainable products. For example, the children wear cloth nappies and we use shampoo and soap bars. We get our fruit and veg from a local supplier, not a supermarket, and use refill shops for dry goods. We are very much still on a journey, but love low waste living, and are always looking for more ways we can improve what we do and live even more sustainably.
Our zero waste journey was really started by our eldest and not wanting to wash or clothe her with harsh chemicals or non-vegan materials. It was crazy once we began actually realising and thinking about what was in the products we bought for her, children’s food, clothes, toys, skin care products, they were filled with preservatives, artificial ingredients, BPA and harsh chemicals. We started being more conscious about what we bought, we wanted our children to be safe and we wanted to ensure that we made changes to do our bit towards fighting climate change and making a brighter future for our children. This built in to reducing the amount of plastic we had in the house, and making sustainable and ethical choices with our purchasing.
Its important to remember though sustainable living is not about perfection! For me its not about zero waste, it’s about being less wasteful. And it’s not something you can achieve overnight, it’s a journey for sure! My family’s journey started over 2 years ago and we do what we can, but some things still slip through the gaps. I want to be completely honest about that, we are still learning, and that’s okay, we’re doing our best and we’re always open to new ideas. There’s still things to do and changes to make, but we produce far less waste than we did 2 years ago. I wanted The Path Less Wasteful to be an honest and real take on zero waste living, we ‘practice what we preach’, we’re not perfect, but we’re real, and we actually use a lot of the products we sell ourselves.
Remember, sustainable living needs to be sustainable to you as well. My top tip would be: be realistic with what you can manage and keep up with. Start small – one change, another, and so on. If you forget, or it doesn’t work out, don’t get disheartened, try something else, but keep going. You can do it!
“Never before have we had such an awareness of what we are doing to the planet, and never before have we had the power to do something about that.”– Sir David Attenborough
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”– Margaret Mead