184 episodes

A lifestyle podcast for women who want tidiness without trash.



Although minimalism has experienced a rebirth in recent years, the "less is more" movement has been around for centuries. Yet today's minimalist influencers have resurrected minimalism with a decidedly consumerist spin, as modern minimalism is nearly synonymous with decluttering. While there's a lot of chatter about tidying, it's radio silence and crickets when it comes to sustainability. 



The result? Aspiring minimalists find themselves on an endless hamster wheel of buying, decluttering, buying more, and purging again. Overemphasizing decluttering and underemphasizing the reasons why we overbuy in the first place is thoroughly inconsistent with slow living as a movement; consumption without intention is terrible for the planet, too. 



Your host, Stephanie Seferian, is a stay-at-home/podcast-from-home mom and author who believes that minimalism and eco-friendliness are intrinsically intertwined. She's here to explore the topics of conscious consumerism, sustainability, and environmentally-friendly parenting practices with like-minded women; she's here, too, to show you how to curate eco-friendly, decluttered homes (without the extra work). 

The Sustainable Minimalists Podcast Stephanie Seferian

    • Leisure
    • 4.7 • 455 Ratings

A lifestyle podcast for women who want tidiness without trash.



Although minimalism has experienced a rebirth in recent years, the "less is more" movement has been around for centuries. Yet today's minimalist influencers have resurrected minimalism with a decidedly consumerist spin, as modern minimalism is nearly synonymous with decluttering. While there's a lot of chatter about tidying, it's radio silence and crickets when it comes to sustainability. 



The result? Aspiring minimalists find themselves on an endless hamster wheel of buying, decluttering, buying more, and purging again. Overemphasizing decluttering and underemphasizing the reasons why we overbuy in the first place is thoroughly inconsistent with slow living as a movement; consumption without intention is terrible for the planet, too. 



Your host, Stephanie Seferian, is a stay-at-home/podcast-from-home mom and author who believes that minimalism and eco-friendliness are intrinsically intertwined. She's here to explore the topics of conscious consumerism, sustainability, and environmentally-friendly parenting practices with like-minded women; she's here, too, to show you how to curate eco-friendly, decluttered homes (without the extra work). 

    How Sustainable Minimalists Entertain

    How Sustainable Minimalists Entertain

    How to Host a (No Plastic) Party

     

    Like to entertain but hate the overwhelm? Join the club. While it feels so right to open your home to your loved ones for dinner parties, barbecues, and holidays, being chained to the kitchen (and the dirty dishes!) feels oh, so wrong. The alternative is equally cringe-worthy: Heaps of plastic plates, cups, and cutlery in the trash?

    No thanks.

    This week, I speak with Repurpose founder Lauren Gropper. Lauren believes hosts and hostesses should center themselves around the concept of sustainable abundance, and that’s because it’s entirely possible to eco-entertain without overwhelm. She divulges exactly how to host a no-plastic dinner (or perhaps 4th of July barbecue!), sans anxiety, and—because Repurpose makes home compostable tableware!—Lauren also explains why compostable products beat plastic ones Every. Single. Time.

    Here’s a preview of this week’s episode:

    [3:00] Distinguishing between biodegradable, home compostable, and industrially compostable products (and why these distinctions matter)

    [10:00] How to host a party without plastic (plus: how to get your guests on board)

    [12:30]  How to smartly answer the question, “What can I bring?”

    [18:30] 3 tips I use in my own home to prevent food waste amidst gluttonous overabundance

    [21:00] Beyond (Mylar) balloons and (single-use) streamers: How to decorate with eco-intention

     

    Resources mentioned in the episode:



    * Take the hair quiz at Gemmist.com

    * Find the store nearest you that sells Repurpose products!

    * Recork.com

    * Repurpose compostable plates

    * Repurpose compostable cutlery



     

     

    * Thank you to Gemmist for sponsoring this episode! Use code MINIMALIST at checkout for 20% off and free, 2-day shipping.



    * Want more episodes like this one? Check out #062: 5 Ways to Take Home Less Plastic From the Supermarket.

    * Find your tribe. Sustainable Minimalists are on Facebook, Instagram + Pinterest.

    * NEW FEATURE! Leave a voicemail with your question and I’ll answer it on-air! Here’s how: State your name then leave the show a message at (508) 960-9046. (This new feature only works with audience participation, so don’t be shy!)



     



     

    • 30 min
    The Pandemic Versus The Planet

    The Pandemic Versus The Planet

    Why is it that, in times of fear, society reverts back to relying on single-use disposables?

    COVID-19 will have lasting effects on the environmental movement. While some of such effects—like embracing forced slowness, for example—took cars off the road and reduced worldwide carbon emissions in the short-term, our propensity toward fear-based buying over the past year has littered the planet. Indeed, communities that fought long and hard to ban single-use items embraced them during the pandemic; there’s the plastics problem, too: currently, the fossil fuels industry is doubling down on creating virgin plastic in hopes of staying relevant (and rich). 

    On this week’s show I speak with Sanikind co-founders Miles Pepper and Martica Wakeman, a *refillable* hand sanitizer dispenser made from recycled plastic. Miles and Martica believe it’s entirely possible to stay healthy without single-use products, and they’re on the show to teach us how.

     

    Here’s a preview of this week’s episode:

    [7:30] Is it possible to make sanitary products (like hand sanitizer) circular? Here’s how

    [15:45] Fear-based buying: 5 ways in which the pandemic has increased consumer reliance on single-use waste

    [22:00] How excessive stress on a certain demographic (ahem … women) negatively impacts the environmental moment

    [24:00] How (and why) the fossil fuels industry has accelerated the creation of virgin plastic (and what it means for the rest of us)

     

    Resources mentioned in the episode:



    * Swell water bottle

    * Sanikind (Use code SUSTAINABLE25 at checkout for 25% off your order!)

    * The Plastic Pandemic: COVID-19 Trashed the Recycling Dream (via Reuters)



     

    * Thank you to Outrage + Optimism for sponsoring this episode! Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts for new episodes every Thursday.

    NEW FEATURE! Leave a voicemail with your question and I’ll answer it on-air! Here’s how: State your name then leave the show a message at (508) 960-9046. (This new feature only works with audience participation, so don’t be shy!)



    * Want more episodes like this one? Check out #135: 5 New Ways to Reduce Your Plastic Waste.

    * Join our (free!) community here.

    * Find your tribe. Sustainable Minimalists are on Facebook, Instagram + Pinterest.



     

    • 32 min
    Palm Oil's Problems

    Palm Oil's Problems

    Palm oil: Ever hear of it? Imports of the stuff to the United States have risen a whopping 263% in the last 15 years and, these days, it’s in our toothpaste, our shampoo, our pet’s food, our makeup, and more. Palm oil is in nearly everything, and its cultivation has dire consequences for our planet.

    This week, I speak with award-winning journalist and author Jocelyn Zuckerman. Jocelyn traveled to 4 continents to research the ripple effects of palm oil’s rise, and she found herself alarmed at what she learned. Jocelyn is on the show to share her greatest insights gained; she offers accessible ways you and I can reduce our reliance on the product, too.

    Here’s a preview of our conversation:

    [5:15] The rise of palm: Did consumers demand it, or was the product forced upon us?

    [7:15] The (massive) environmental implications associated with growing oil palm

    [8:30] Connections between palm oil and pandemics

    [13:30] How palm oil impacts worldwide obesity rates

    [16:00] Political and financial forces that are keeping the product relevant

    [17:00] 3 tips for listeners who want to reduce their reliance

     

    Resources mentioned in this episode:



    * Planet Palm: How Palm Oil Ended Up in Everything―and Endangered the World

    * Palm Oil is Destroying Rainforests. But Try Going A Day Without It (via National Geographic)



     

    The many names of palm oil in ingredients lists:

    Elaeis guineensis

    Etyl palmitate

    Glyceryl

    Hydrogenated palm glycerides

    Octyl palmitate

    Palm fruit oil, Palm kernel, Palm kernel oil, Palm stearine

    Palmate, Palmitate, Palmitic acid, Palmityl alcohol, Palmolein

    Sodium kernelate, Sodium laureth sulfate, Sodium lauryl sulphate, Sodium lauryl sulfate, Sodium palm kernelate

    Stearate, Stearic acid

    Vegetable fat, Vegetable oil

     

    * Thank you to Outrage + Optimism for sponsoring this episode! Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts for new episodes every Thursday.



    * Want more episodes like this one? Check out #142: Biodiversity Is Declining. Here’s Why That’s Important.

    * Find your tribe. Sustainable Minimalists are on Facebook, Instagram + Pinterest.

    * NEW FEATURE! Leave a voicemail with your question and I’ll answer it on-air! Here’s how: State your name then leave the show a message at (508) 960-9046. (This new feature only works with audience participation, so don’t be shy!)



     

     



     

    • 23 min
    The Lowdown on Sustainable Toys

    The Lowdown on Sustainable Toys

    Sustainable toys provide countless benefits to both children and the planet yet, still, finding such toys can be difficult. What, exactly, makes a toy sustainable? Are wooden toys (ahem … Melissa & Doug) considered eco-friendly simply because they are made of wood?

    These days, most toys are made of plastics; stuffed animals and dolls are also made of artificial (read: plastic) fibers. Through a complex chemical process, plastic toys are made from fossil fuels and eventually break into many small pieces, or microplastics, that pollute our planet for the next 800-ish years.

    This week, I speak with blogger Christina Floyd. Like most parents, Christina found herself confused about the many issues surrounding toy sustainability so she started a blog to help others navigate the ins and outs of the toy market. And while I’ve done shows on *minimalist* playrooms in the past, this show is heavily centered around eco-friendliness. Indeed, Christina and I do a deep dive (and I mean real, real deep!) into the world of eco-friendly playthings for the children in our lives.

     

    Here’s a preview of this week’s episode:

    [5:00]  Beyond wooden toys: The 4 qualities of sustainable playthings

    [7:00]  Is Melissa & Doug an eco-friendly corporation?

    [8:30] 3 things to look for when buying any toy for the children in your life

    [14:30] Non-plastic stuffed animal ideas

    [15:30] Why toy packaging matters

     

    Resources mentioned in this week’s episode:



    * Christina on Instagram

    * Christina’s 13 sustainable toy recommendations

    * Sustainable Toys free Facebook group 



     

    * Thank you to Outrage + Optimism for sponsoring this episode! Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts for new episodes every Thursday.

    * All I want for my birthday is your podcast reviews! On the Apple Podcasts app, hit the Library tab, scroll allll the way to the bottom past all prior episodes, then click on the stars to leave a review. (Thank you!)



    * Want more episodes like this one? Check out #164: Your Minimalist Play Room.

    * Find your tribe. Sustainable Minimalists are on Facebook, Instagram + Pinterest.

    * NEW FEATURE! Leave a voicemail with your question and I’ll answer it on-air! Here’s how: State your name then leave the show a message at (508) 960-9046. (This new feature only works with audience participation, so don’t be shy!)



     



     

    • 26 min
    How To Be Happy In A Small Home

    How To Be Happy In A Small Home

    How To Be Happy In A Small Home

     

    Choosing to live in a small home is one of the most basic ways we can both reduce our carbon footprints and curb unnecessary spending. Indeed, while living small (not necessarily tiny!) is the epitome of sustainable minimalism, it can be difficult to intentionally embrace less square footage in a culture that suggests bigger is best.

    It’s a real conundrum: We revere space, but we also revere eco-simplicity. Can we have both?

    On today’s show I speak with author Laura Fenton. Laura’s here to explain exactly how she has found daily joy in her 690 square foot apartment with her family and how you can, too.

     

    Here’s a preview of this week’s episode:

    [7:30] The personal and environmental benefits associated with living small

    [13:45] The nuts and bolts of living in a small space with kids: Making it work

    [14:50] Tricks of the trade: Practical storage solutions for small homes

    [24:15] Laura’s words of encouragement for listeners who believe they need a bigger home

     

    Resources mentioned in the episode:



    * The Little Book of Living Small 



     

    * A huge thank you to Reel Paper for sponsoring this week’s episode! Use code SUSTAINABLE at checkout for 25% off your first order.

    * All I want for my birthday is your podcast reviews! On the Apple Podcasts app, hit the Library tab, scroll allll the way to the bottom past all prior episodes, then click on the stars to leave a review. (Thank you!)



    * Want more episodes like this one? Check out #019: Tiny Home, Gigantic Life.

    * Find your tribe. Sustainable Minimalists are on Facebook, Instagram + Pinterest.

    * NEW FEATURE! Leave a voicemail with your question and I’ll answer it on-air! Here’s how: State your name then leave the show a message at (508) 960-9046. (This new feature only works with audience participation, so don’t be shy!)



     



     

    • 35 min
    In Defense of Subtraction

    In Defense of Subtraction

    When humans solve problems, we often overlook an incredibly powerful option: Subtraction. We add baskets and bins to fix organizational issues within the home. We buy new clothes when we find ourselves frustrated with our wardrobes. In correspondence, we get loquacious in efforts of making our points. In design fields, we add elements to improve “flow”.

    In short, addition rules.

    But intentional subtraction is a powerful practice that’s rewarding, fun, and backed by science. And once we retrain our brains to subtract first and add later? We empower ourselves to take the tenets of subtraction well beyond decluttering and into every facet of our lives.

    My guest today is Dr. Leidy Klotz,  author of Subtract: The Untapped Science of Less. Dr. Klotz proposes a counterintuitive way of re-framing our behavior so that subtracting becomes our go-to method for solving problems.

    Here’s a preview of this week’s episode:

    [5:15] Why humans tend to consider subtraction as revolutionary (even though it isn’t)

    [9;45] How to apply the tenets of subtraction to improve the quality of your life

    [14:30] Why we all need to enact Stop-Doing Lists in addition to our To-Do Lists

    [17:15] How subtraction can be part of the climate change solution

    [19:45] Practical ways to make subtraction your go-to habit when problem solving

     

    Resources mentioned in the episode:



    * Subtract: The Untapped Science of Less

    * Why our brains struggle to subtract (a short YouTube video that summarizes Leidy’s research)



     

    A huge thank you to Reel Paper for sponsoring this week’s episode! Use code SUSTAINABLE at checkout for 25% off your first order.

    NEW FEATURE! Leave a voicemail with your question and I’ll answer it on-air! Here’s how: State your name then leave the show a message at (508) 960-9046. (This new feature only works with audience participation, so don’t be shy!)



    * Join our (free!) community here.

    * Find your tribe. Sustainable Minimalists are on Facebook, Instagram + Pinterest.







     

    • 34 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
455 Ratings

455 Ratings

MeganMikkelsen ,

Stephanie makes it easy to embrace minimalism

I love Stephanie‘s focus of combining eco-friendly living and minimalism. Her simple steps leave you feeling ready to make change instead of feeling like you’re not doing enough. Such great advice on how to minimize our impact on the earth without feeling overwhelmed or discouraged. Thank you Stephanie!

FIFab13 ,

Great way to ease into a minimalist mindset

Loved being a guest on this pod! Stephanie was the perfect host and a joy to talk tidy with :). She effortlessly tackles a topic many are intimidated by in such an approachable and digestible way. This podcast will continue to be at the top of my list when I’m seeking minimalist Inspo!

LGfromOH ,

Very Enjoyable and Insightful

I have been thoroughly enjoying this podcast. I find it engaging, educating and motivating. I’m also always impressed with how well she interviews her guests and always seems to ask the questions I’m thinking.

Top Podcasts In Leisure

Listeners Also Subscribed To