‘I think a lot of people find going greener really daunting, so I try to break the lifestyle down into smaller, more easily manageable steps so it doesn’t feel so overwhelming’ – in the pink when it comes to going green is Becky Pink of PinksCharming.
Helping people make easy eco-friendly changes with green life hacks is what blogger Becky finds rewarding, so read on for some tips from her on helpful things you can start doing for a more environmentally-friendly and ethical lifestyle.
How did you originally get started with writing about green issues?
Although I have been interested in green issues for many years, my first blog posts about sustainability were through a partnership with Ikea and environmental charity Hubbub, called Live Lagom. It was the first wave of this project and I was chosen to receive a budget to choose Ikea products to make our home more sustainable. As part of that, I visited my local store to see their 6,000 solar panels, rainwater harvesting system and biomass boilers.
As a lifelong beauty junkie and former senior copywriter for a multi-national beauty company, I also began sharing honest reviews of green beauty products. This led to partnering with green beauty retailer Love Lula, and I’ve been collaborating with them for a few years now. Writing about green issues can incorporate pretty much any topic: interiors, beauty, fashion, travel, cooking, shopping, energy efficiency, the list goes on, so there’s always something new to write about.
What’s your favourite thing to post about and why?
I love writing about the simple ways we can all make small changes to our lives to be more eco-friendly. I think a lot of people find it really daunting, so I try to break the greener lifestyle down into smaller, more easily manageable steps so it doesn’t feel so overwhelming. I also love it when I discover a green life hack that either makes life easier, or saves money as well as being better for the environment – that’s the jackpot! It’s so rewarding when readers message me to say they’ve tried out a beauty product I recommend and love it, or have made changes inspired by my blog – that’s what makes it worth the hard work.
How have you had to change your approach to blogging, or your content, during the COVID-19 crisis?
COVID-19 has not made a huge difference to what I write about, as I am such a homebody that most of my content is still relevant when we are all spending the majority of our time at home. I haven’t been able to write as much as usual, however, as I have my kids at home and need to try to home school them.
As you’d expect, my recipe posts and my home improvement posts are getting read the most, and I’ve had messages saying readers are enjoying reading something positive. My green beauty posts aren’t getting as much attention, as people aren’t going out as much, but I know they’ll pick up when we get back to ‘normal’ – whenever that is!
Now, more than ever, I am trying to be positive as much as I can, and cheering on people as they make changes. I do my best to be realistic, however. Living a more eco-friendly life is not easy at the best of times, and can cost more money. When the majority of people are concerned about whether or not they have a job to go back to, and when their kids will be able to go back to school, there are more pressing concerns than the environment.
What are some of the environmental stories/issues happening at the moment that you’d wish more people knew about?
For me, eco issues go hand-in-hand with ethical issues. The impact of fast fashion on the environment, and the problems of fashion retailers cancelling orders and refusing to pay workers in the developing world is worrying me a lot. Not only are the workers, who already earn a scandalously low wage, not being paid, they are also facing catching COVID-19 and the devastation that goes with it. It’s absolutely horrifying. I have read that the unsold clothes are also going to landfill, too – it’s so wrong on every level. I avoid fast fashion and I hope that these problems will get more attention and make people think twice before they buy from unethical retailers in future.
For those who are just getting into greener living, what are three small changes you would recommend people start with?
I would say start small and work your way up. Hopefully most people are using reusable bags, cups and water bottles already but if not, get yourself one and remember to take it out with you (once you start going out, of course!).
Investigate the local options for recycling too, going beyond just plastic and glass and paper. There is a man who lives quite close to me who collects crisp packets and sweet wrappers for recycling, and raises money for charity at the same time, which is a no-brainer for me. I also recycle my contact lenses and cases at my optician.
Planning your meals to try to minimise food waste is another eco-friendly way to save money, and using a compost heap for any scraps will also benefit your garden if you have one. We’re growing vegetables and have a water butt to collect rain water so we don’t have to use a hose.
I have also been using a milkman who delivers milk in glass bottles, and I buy ketchup, mayo etc. in glass bottles too rather than squeezy plastic bottles, to cut down on single use plastic.
Buying second-hand fashion is also a great way to not only help the environment but save money and get a unique look, too.
How’s that for starters?
Will the growth of veganism continue?
I’m not a vegan myself, but I do think veganism will continue to grow, not least because of the concerns over potential reductions in food standards – it’s certainly making me think about it much more seriously. I think awareness is growing, and there are more vegan foods available in shops and restaurants, so I think that will make it easier for people to reduce meat and dairy consumption even if they don’t go vegan.
How do you collaborate with brands and which kind of brands do you really like working with?
I am open to working with brands in lots of different ways. It mostly tends to be honest product reviews but as a former journalist I am open to writing more in-depth opinion pieces, too. I love working with smaller brands where I can really get to know the people behind the company, and I am especially keen to work with minority and women-owned businesses. I value working with businesses who have a transparent supply chain and really do the hard work when working with suppliers and makers to ensure they are looking after their team properly as well as minimising their environmental impact.
For PRs looking to work with you and your blog/website, how would you prefer they approach you and with what kind of content?
The best way to get in contact is through my email or in my Instagram DMs: I’m @pinkscharming on both Instagram and Twitter. I assess each approach on its own merits so I’m open to working in different ways and challenging myself. As a freelance copywriter, I’m all about the words but I work very hard on my photography, too. I’m also learning more about video.
What other blogs do you check out regularly (whether green-related or not)?
I love interiors and follow lots of interior blogs like Love Chic Living, and as a parent myself I also read parenting blogs like Laura’s Lovely Blog and What the Redhead Said when I have time. Love Lula has gathered a good group of green beauty bloggers so I often read what the others are reviewing, too.