Budget-Friendly Sources for Going Green

updated Jul 16, 2020
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(Image credit: Mat Sanders)

One of the toughest parts about living green is often the price tag associated with such products. Luckily, as brands become more aware of mindful living, prices become more and more approachable. Check out these great resources from our Marketplace for finding eco-friendly home goods at costs you can afford.

Kitchen Supplies & Tabletop

608f6c0d00cc24fcb62aaa47233105835e85e863. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop Preserve Products
We don’t usually think of plastic as a green material, but Preserve uses 100% recycled/recyclabe #5 polypropylene plastic in their products. It’s more expensive than disposable stuff, but it pays off in the long run by lasting through many uses.

f6c363b478a9a4db76d49a9c6139073ab2e675c1. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop Farmer’s Markets
It’s hard to find anything fresher or better than the food at your local farmer’s market. Produce is usually pretty cheap, too, when you’re buying in season and shipping costs are subtracted from the equation. For our guide to markets across the country, click here.

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This online store carries over 8,000 natural and organic products—including household cleaners and candles, spices, seasonings and kitchen utensils—in pretty much all of the eco names you’d expect to find, including many budget brands.

Household Supplies & Green Materials

6ca513903ed005d411aeff9cda748c8bdc1f97a4. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop Green Depot
Founded in November 2005, Green Depot has since expanded into multiple showrooms across the East Coast and Midwest. Their mission is to be the green version of Home Depot, making eco-friendly household goods more accessible and affordable.

518b194da7227c47a69085be65aaddbeb52522ee. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop The Ultimate Green Store
Not everything at this online general store is cheap. They carry a lot of higher end green brands, but they’re a good resource for quality products and a few key budget brands, like Method and Mrs. Meyers cleaning product lines.

786af336f40e26915c460b58f031951fb065066f. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop Compostable Goods
All of the home products available through Compostable Goods are designed to be biodegradable and completely compostable at the end of their life. It’s not all super-cheap, but they have a good sale section for items that have been deeply discounted.

Furniture and Decor

9bacf2cf5fc40dd19a566aa6798c1e4064742cc9. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop Green Home Environmental Products
This online store carries an extensive line of recycled wood, metal, and plastic furniture in the low hundreds. It’s not all beautiful, but there are good and affordable pieces to be found. They also carry household products from rain barrels to lawn mowers.

f3d1d904accc9be6548195d4d7c079e5f7020ee2. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop Renegade Handmade
This annual craft fair has a full-time, brick-and-mortar home in Chicago. Shop there in person or online for affordable artwork and accessories. Everything is made by hand, and they feature a rotating selection of work by over 300 artists.

Vintage & Thrift

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This online store is a consistently popular source for artist-made objects, craft supplies, fabrics, and vintage housewares. Over just five years, it’s managed to become one of the largest online retailers of handmade and vintage goods, with hundreds of thousands of sellers.

92052e88c2060bce13024ab399aa5abcb76e82c3. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop Goodwill
Goodwill is one of the few non-profit thrift shops with a strong online presence. Their auction site pulls from a national inventory of used items, and it operates like eBay, except that all proceeds go to Goodwill’s education, training, and job placement programs.

cf259682f404f766b5ca81adcd46a96d7ab14c3f. w.94 h.71 s.centercrop Thrift Stores
If you’re interested in reuse and local shopping, nothing beats your neighborhood thrift store for green furniture and home goods. For a list of great thrift stores across the country, see this post.

Image: Flor