“Why is there all this trash and why is that okay? We have to find solutions before it gets out of control.” - Lauren Singer

Have you ever thought about how much waste you produce in a day? What about per year? The average American produces 4.3 pounds of waste per daythat's nearly 1,600 pounds per year. Approximately 55 percent of that waste ends up in our landfills each year. If we took some simple steps like using reusable bags, we could easily minimize our waste. At least that's what Lauren Singer did.

For the last three years or so, Lauren has been living a “zero-waste” lifestyle. In doing so, she was able to fit two years of trash in one small, 16-ounce mason jar.

In her mason jar, you'll find everything she couldn't recycle, compost, or figure out what to do with – an idea that came to her when she was a senior at NYU studying Environmental Studies.

You Can Live Without Producing Trash

Lauren's Top 3 Tips for Reducing Waste 

1. Look in your garbage can and see what waste you can reduce.

2. Use a reusable bag instead of a plastic or paper bag.

3. Make products like toothpaste and deodorant, yourself.

Lauren is a great inspiration for all of us. She's shown us that reducing waste can actually be fun and rewarding, not only for yourself but for the environment as well.

So, the next time you go to the grocery store or your local farmer's market, try to remember to bring your reusable bags with you. Some stores such as Target and Whole Foods will even reward you for bringing your own bags.

Start composting. It's easy! Look out for local gardens in your community that may accept your food scraps for compost, or try composting in your own garden. It's a simple way to make your soil nutrient-rich and fueled for plant growth.

Lastly, get your DIY on by experimenting with making your own everyday products such as toothpaste and deodorant. Replace single-use products such as paper towel with cotton napkins or materials that can be reused instead of being thrown away.

Lauren has proven that by making your own products, composting, recycling, and using reusable bags, you can reduce waste to almost zero and make a huge positive impact on the environment. It's a simple combination of eco-friendly efforts that everyone is capable of trying.

If you're looking for more zero-waste tips, you can check out Lauren's blog, Trash is for Tossers.