New year, new you.

It’s that time of the year when making changes is on everyone’s mind.

Perhaps you’d like to save more money this year, or grow your own veggies. Maybe you’d like to spend more time with family, or take a trip around the country.

Or you might simply want to live a more sustainable lifestyle.

Here are our top 5 things to keep in mind for the new year.

1. Conserve resources.

Be mindful of fuel, water and power wastage. Travel together, or use public transport when you can.

Take a cooler shower, or a shorter shower if you’re like me and LOVE hot water. Be careful of letting the tap run till it gets to that perfect temperature.

Switch off lights and appliances when you’re not using them.  There is this list of 85 things you can do to save energy that add up.

2. Mind your face.

Okay not literally your face, but what you put on it.

Whether it is cruelty free, palm oil free, organic or natural, the choices for good wellness products is HUGE. There are endless lists of chemicals and nasties to avoid, but this is where a little research goes a long way.

There will be brands based in your local area that make great products, and local markets and popups are often a great way to discover these brands. Keep your eyes open!

3. Say no to singlehood.

At least when it comes to plastic.

91% (or more) plastic ISNT recycled. If things continue the way they do, then by 2050 there will be 12 billion metric tons of plastic in landfills  and it all eventually ends up into the ocean where it does terrible things to marine wildlife.

Carry reusable bags for shopping. Or if you’re REALLY cool then you could try a wicker basket.

Avoid produce that’s covered in funky wrapping. Most produce comes pre-wrapped by Mother Nature. It’s called a peel.

If you don’t have a KeepCup yet, you should! As a coffee drinker, this is a BRILLIANT way of minimising the use of disposable cups. Plus they come in fun colours.

4. Buy local food.

Sometimes your food travels further than you ever do. Yes, it can be brilliant to get avocadoes all year round but then stuff like this happens.

Local food is fresher since it’s seasonal and probably cheaper since it hasn’t had to pay for its airfare.

Food that’s flown in has a bigger impact on the environment than food that comes by road, rail or sea. If you want to know about the impact of food miles, read this.

There is a case for buying food that’s grown as it should be (outdoors in the appropriate climate rather than in greenhouses), even if that means further away, but that’s negated by choosing seasonal foods.

5. Travel responsibly.

It’s not just your mode of transportation that you can be mindful with. It’s also where you stay, the mindset with which you travel, the choices you make as a guest and pretty much the whole experience.

Pebble Magazine has this great list of 12 Eco-Friendly companies to travel with. Whether it’s discovering the most mindful hotels and cafes through Kynder, planning an adventure or conservation holiday with Earthchangers or having Rickshaw Travel find you the most authentic cultural trip, it’s all there!

Or you can be like Natalia and spend a month living in a camper van.

If you find it hard to make big changes and stick with them, Bloomtown is running a great challenge this year which might be just the thing for you.

Every month you replace ONE product (food, cosmetics etc) with a palm-oil free and/or single-use plastic-free alternative and write about it on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram using the hashtag  #BloomtownEcoChallenge. At the end of every month they’ll pick someone to feature and award a £25 Bloomtown Gift card.

It’s a great way to make small changes and to learn about alternatives that are out there.

What are your top tips for a more sustainable 2018? Let us know in a tweet!

Want to know more about joining the Blue Patch community? Click here.

Preeti is the Marketing Manager at Blue Patch. Born and raised in India, she spent some time in the US, completing a degree in Psychology and Biology, after which she moved to the UK in 2010 to study an MSc in Finance and Management. She can often be found obsessing over her plants, trying to clamp down on an ever-increasing collection of nail polish or exploring and taking photos of random corners of London. She enjoys the excitement that comes with the new year but does not make new year resolutions.