So, you’re thinking about (re)decorating your dorm room and while there are a lot of options to choose from, there’s one thing that you know for sure: You want it to be “green” and chic. Well, actually there’s something else that you want and that’s to be able to create it in a way that is as cost-effective as possible.
Boy, have you come to the right place. Below, we have for you five ways that you can put together an eco-friendly dorm room that will be cost-effective, energy-efficient and yes, (relatively) easy on your wallet:
Get energy-efficient appliances. In most dorm rooms, you have to be pretty limited when it comes to the amount of appliances that you have in your space, but you usually can have a mini-refrigerator, microwave and coffeemaker or toaster. Energy Star is a great website to go to find information on appliances that have its “seal of approval” (in the form of a label) on it.
Buy used. When it comes to furniture like an additional chair, futon or ottoman that you may want, it’s always cheaper and eco-friendly to go the used route. If you are patient and you really focus on what you are looking for, thrift stores, Goodwill, even websites like eBay and Craigslist can help you to find some really great deals. Plus, some of the pieces really are or look “like new”.
Add some greenery. OK, a lot of people probably think that a dorm room is the last place where something like a plant will be able to survive, but you might be surprised. There are some low-maintenance indoor plants that can help to keep your room looking nice while also keeping toxins out of the air. Some of them include the ficus tree, Chinese evergreen, bonsai tree, peperomia, and the grape ivy.
Use the right materials. Whether you’re a freshman in college or you’re enrolled in the nurse practitioner program, there is nothing like walking into your dorm room after a test and laying out your comfortable bedding. Just make sure that it’s made from an eco-friendly fabric such as organic cotton, bamboo or polyester. While you’re at it, pick up some washcloths, towels and sheets that are also made from organic cotton. (Some shower shoes that are made from recycled plastic would be a welcome addition a well.)
Don’t forget about your electronics. No dorm room is complete without having your own eco-friendly electronics. For starters, did you know that you can cut down on the amount of electricity that you use with a computer by as much as 60 percent by simply opting for a laptop rather than a desktop? Also, if you need a printer, it’s smart to go with an HP brand because it is Energy Star certified. Plus, make sure that when your cartridges run out of ink that you take them to some place like Walgreens to have them refilled and that you recycle them rather than throw them away. Finally, for items like your cell phone and television, purchase a power strip rather than attempting to use all of your outlets. It’s just one more great way to save on electricity.