How to Avoid Buying Stuff 2022

My generation are so used to owning stuff that even the idea of streaming music and not owning a CD was a bit of a wrench for us. The younger generation don’t seem to have the same attachment and are quite happy to keep their money for experiences instead. I think we could learn a thing or two from them. Here are some useful resources to help you avoid buying stuff so you can put your money to better use.

Nothing mentioned in this article has been sponsored. It’s all just my own personal opinion. If you like your sources to remain independent then please;
share this article, or
buy me a coffee on Ko-fi, or
make with a one-time donation via Paypal

Avoid buying a Car by

  • using public transport
  • cycling or walking
  • using joining a car share scheme like Go Car or Yuko or the peer-to-peer It is possible to rent electric cars from Gocar, and if you’re in Dublin city UFO Drive have an electric car for hire on St Stephen’s Green, D2.
  • using lift share service like Carpool or Liftshare

Avoid buying a Bike by renting one from 

Avoid buying a Boat (yes really!) by

Avoid buying Clothes & Accessories by

Maternity & Baby Stuff

Avoid buying Toys by

Avoid buying Holiday Accommodation by

Avoid buying Books by

  • using the local library
  • sharing with friends and family
  • using little libraries
  • sourcing a book from the Facebook group Book Swap Ireland
  • checking out if your local cafe or hostel has a ‘take one, leave one’ book shelf
  • visiting your local recycling centre. Some centres, like the one in Bray, Co Wicklow, collect books and offer them to citizens for free
  • downloading free audio books from websites like those listed here or from from your library via Borrow box or Libby

Avoiding buying DVD’s by

  • subscribing to Netflix
  • renting movies off SKY

Avoid buying TV by

Avoid buying Spare Parts by

  • printing spare parts at your local library using templates from sites like Thingverse

Avoid buying Homeware by

  • asking friends and family for duplicate (every house has them)
  • reusing plastic takeaway containers as tupperware
  • reusing jars as take-away coffee cups, or vases or to store food
  • picking up things from Freecycle pages & groups and the free section on

Avoid buying Garden Equipment by

  • making your own compost and if you don’t have enough compostable waste get more on Sharewaste
  • joining your local GIY group and swap seeds and seedlings
  • collecting seeds from parks and gardens (remembering to ask permission first)
  • picking up things from Freecycle pages & groups and the free section on
  • dumpster diving. I have a beautiful orchid that I rescued from skip!

Avoid buying Food by

  • joining Olio and connecting with people looking to rehome extra food

Avoid buying Training by


PS – You might also be interested in my articles Six Weeks towards Zero Waste and Savvy Sustainability

Published by Elaine Butler

I am a circular design consultant helping manfacturers prepare for the circular economy

9 thoughts on “How to Avoid Buying Stuff 2022

  1. Hi Elaine,

    Well Done – you’re such an inspiration. All four of you were just brilliant on Claire Byrne Live. Going to have to make a real effort this year, it was another woman who inspired me to use cloth nappies years ago so you’re inspiring me now to get zero wasting seriously.

    By the way, where I live in Bray, the local recycling centre has an ongoing supply of books for free and regularly has to throw out skiploads of extra books. Sad but true.

    With best wishes, Jill


    1. Thank you so much for those lovely words. I’m blushing!

      We’ll done on using the cloth nappies. I only switched on to zero waste when I was past the nappy stage. When I think of all those disposables I sent to landfill, eek!

      Go slowly with your changes. It’s very easy to become overwhelmed. And do post on my Facebook page if you’ve any questions.

      Thanks also for tip on books at Bray Recycling centre. I’ll edit the post to include it.



  2. Thanks for sharing your ideas – I must admit I’ve been thinking about ways to travel without using my car so much recently. Even just cutting out some of the shorter journeys initially and switching to using a bike can help with consuming less and being more eco friendly. I don’t have much space so am considering investing in a fold down bike so it doesn’t take up a lot of storage space!


    1. And it also helps to get fitter. I always try to start cycling more when the weather gets warmer, but i have to admit to losing momentum after a couple of months. Still better to try and fail than not try at all. I wonder Could you get a fold up bike second hand?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s true! It’s much nicer to cycle in the summer months isn’t it?

        Yes I would think a second hand fold up bike is a goer. I will have a look into it!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: