- How to live sustainably - JouleBug
- Help build trees - Ecosia
- Reduce food waste - Too Good to Go & OLIO
- Thrifting - Good on You & Vinted
- Exchanging essentials and luxuries - Freecycle
- Check sustainability of items - Giki & Think Dirty
- Vegan restaurants - HappyCow
- Reduce carbon footprint - Strava
If you want to help but don’t know how to, the best app to start with would be JouleBug. This app encourages you to adopt a more sustainable and environmentally-conscious lifestyle by giving you ideas to live greener.
- Sustainable acts are organised into tips and lists that you can tick off when you do them in real-time, such as turning off the lights, buying second-hand, or eating a meat-free meal
- Learn more about each tip that’s given to you with Impact Stats, Bonuses, How-To Videos, and Links
- See what others are up to on your Feed
- Join communities to meet like-minded people and share advice
- Receive awards, achievements and badges as you reach certain milestones
- Discover new actions by searching various categories
- Share your new sustainable tips via messaging apps and social media
- Like and comment on other posts in your Feed
- Compete in online challenges
This app not only offers you new and exciting ways of caring for the environment, but also encourages you to stay on top of these new habits by offering badges that you can share with a whole community of others. If you want to start living more consciously, download JouleBug and kickstart your new lifestyle.
This is one of the simplest ways you can contribute, even a little bit, to saving the Earth. Ecosia is a search engine like Google and Bing. When you use it, you’re actually helping the planet because Ecosia makes money from search ads, which they then use to plant trees around the world.
The impact from each search:
- Ecosia use their own solar plant to power their servers on 100% renewable energy, so each search removes around one kilogram of carbon dioxide from the air
- They plant trees in the most threatened habitats
- They publish monthly financial reports so you can see how many trees have been planted
If you make Ecosia your new search engine (or download the app and use it through there), you’ll be planting trees by simply browsing the web! You can make Ecosia your first step to helping the planet, and then use these other apps to convert to wholly sustainable living.
On average, the UK throws away 9.52 million tonnes of food per year, which emits 25 million tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere. And one third of food produced goes to waste, dumped after a bakery closes each night, or chucked from a takeaway that wasn’t fully eaten.
Too Good to Go is a takeaway app dedicated to reducing food waste by placing you in touch with local restaurants, bakeries, shops, and cafes that would otherwise throw their food away at the end of a work day.
- Buy delicious, fresh food from your favourite nearby food establishments at discounted prices
- Search by location to find places near you, place an order through the app, and collect your food
- Find new places you didn’t know about before
- Create a list of favourites so you’re alerted to new deals
- Use the built-in map to find places near your current location
Food is usually priced between two and four pounds, offering you a great deal on a bunch of lovely food. If you hate food waste and want to be part of the movement to reduce how much is thrown away each day, week, month, and year, swap your next takeaway for a Too Good to Go meal.
Free - offers in-app purchases
OLIO is another app dedicated to eliminating food waste, but this time it’s more focused on borrowing and swapping in your neighbourhood. Connect with the people living near you and share food that would otherwise be thrown away.
- Add a listing of the food you want to give away for free to someone else on the OLIO FREE feed
- Sell homemade food on OLIO MADE
- Make requests for the types of food you want to buy
- Message and communicate with neighbours to arrange times to share, drop off, or pick up food
- Use the forum to join a global chat
- Explore more ways to live sustainably with OLIO GOALS
- Check out someone’s profile before agreeing to meet them
- Report or block anyone, if necessary
OLIO allows you to get to know your neighbours as well as sell your homemade foods, buy others, and get spare food for free instead of visiting the shops. It’s a great way to help the planet, reduce food waste, and befriend others who feel the same way about protecting the environment.
Clothes are another way you can live greener, as many companies sell unethically-sourced clothing made from materials that pollute the environment. Good on You rates brands on their app so you can see which companies to support, and which produce clothes that are bad for the planet.
- Browse through more than 3,000 brands
- Use the rating system from one (‘We Avoid’) to five (‘Great’) to guide your purchases
- Discover better alternatives to your favourite clothing brands
- Get exclusive offers
- Find tips, guides, and style edits on the app
- Stay up-to-date with the latest fashion trends
- Send feedback and messages to brands
- Ask the app to rate a company if it isn’t on there already
Fast fashion pollutes the sea with microplastics and is the second-largest consumer of the world’s water. If supporting eco-conscious clothing brands is important to you, then the Good on You app is perfect for making sure you only support companies who are on the same mission as you.
Vinted is another ethical app that allows you to search for, purchase, and sell second-hand clothes, toys, and homeware. Trade in high street shopping for online second-hand swapping to give clothes a new life and reduce the amount of pollution generated from factories. The more you support thrifting, the less you’re contributing to the 10% of carbon emissions produced by fast fashion.
- Listing an item to sell is quick and simple - take a picture, upload with a price, and write a short description of the item
- Receive notifications every time someone likes or buys one of your items
- Download the label and track your parcel (no shipping fees!)
- Transfer money securely with the in-app payment system
- Discover a range of labels from your favourite shops, filtering searches by category, brand, size, and price
- Get an item delivered to you or collect from a pick-up point
Save money and the environment by thrifting. Who knows, you may find your favourite piece of clothing.
If you’re a fan of thrifting, but don’t quite have the budget right now, Freecycle is the app for you! This app is designed for people to swap and trade all sorts of items, like books, clothes, furniture, games, electronics, appliances, tools, and more - completely free!
- Give away unwanted items to people who really need them and declutter your space
- Post your item online and wait for someone to contact you about it
- Request things from your community and see if anyone has it
- Communicate with everyone in your community to swap, trade, and share
This initiative works through volunteer-run communities, but not every place will have a community set up yet. Why don’t you be the first for your town or city?
If you don’t know whether a product you’re looking at in a shop is sustainable or not, you can use the Giki app to separate the eco-friendly items from the damaging ones.
- Scan the barcode of any item
- Badges are awarded for each product - the more badges an item receives, the more sustainable it is
- Read more information about the product, such as if it’s sourced responsibly, committed to animal welfare, and recyclable
- Learn about how your shopping habits affect the planet and its environment
- Find alternatives that are better for your health and the environment
If your goal is to only eat organic, ethically-sourced food that is not only good for your body, but also the planet, then you can use Giki whilst shopping to check that a product aligns with your values before purchasing it. If you want to shop more ethically from your phone, check out the best ethical shopping apps.
If you buy makeup and skincare products, do you stop to think about what you’re actually putting on your face? Many products contain fragrances and metals that can actually cause you a lot of harm, so it’s important that you know what’s in products before you apply them. This is where Think Dirty comes in.
- Scan the barcode (over 850,000 cosmetics are recognised)
- Check the Dirty Meter given, which rates how dangerous the ingredients in the product are
- Use the My Bathroom Rating to scan what you already own and learn how sustainable your current bathroom products are
- Track your progress on moving from harmful items to a completely sustainable and healthy set of products
- Save products to a shopping list so you know what to look for next time
- Buy products directly from Amazon through the app
- Learn more about the ingredients, certifications, and health impacts of each item you scan
- If a product isn’t on the app, use your camera to scan a barcode and ingredient list to submit to Think Dirty
Taking care of yourself is important, and supporting clean products means you’ll be fighting against the battle of animal cruelty organisations and companies whose factories emit harmful pollutants. Just as you wouldn’t want to put it on your face, don’t breathe it in either.
Free (with ads in-app purchases) or £3.99
There are around 7.2 millionpeople in the UK following a meat-free diet at the moment. Studies have shown that eliminating meat can significantly reduce your carbon footprint, with plant-based diets emitting 10 to 50 times less pollutants than animal products, which produce 35 - 40% of all global methane. If you’re a vegan or practicing to be, HappyCow is your new map to find restaurants.
- Search more than 135,000 restaurants, cafes, bakeries, markets, juice bars, coffee shops, and food stores in over 180 countries to find vegan delivery, eat-in, and takeout
- Filter your search by Delivery, Take-out, Vegetarian, Gluten-Free, and cuisine types
- Search by your location or enter a new one (great for planning road trips!)
- Read reviews of places before going to see what other meat-free eaters thought about it
- Browse through photos uploaded by other members
- Save places on the map
- Add restaurants to a Favourite or Travel list for the future
- Upload your own photos and reviews once you’ve visited a place
- Join a community of over 500,000 people who all aspire to live a healthier, more sustainable, meat-free lifestyle
Whether you’re just beginning to learn about vegetarianism and veganism, or have been in the game for years, this app will become a vital lifesaver to find places you’ll enjoy instead of wasting time.
Check out our list of cooking appsfor more inspiration.
Free - offers in-app purchases
We all know that our cars pump greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, and that fuel consumption releases harmful chemicals from our exhaust, but with so many cars on the road, this seems a difficult one to alter. But you can - by swapping out your car for walking or cycling. And Strava can keep this goal alive.
- Track your fitness activity by recording your runs, cycles, walks, swims, and hikes
- Get key statistics related to your exercise, like distance, pace, speed, elevation, and calories burned
- Use the map to find new routes
- Take part in monthly challenges to reach new goals
- Share your activity with friends and family on the app, and compare routes
- Share photos of your journey
- Receive customisable workout plans, feedback on how to train better, and extensive analysis on your performance with the Strava subscription
- Links to your Health app
You can track almost any activity with Strava, and you can use it to encourage others to find alternative ways of moving around that doesn’t involve a vehicle! Not only will this make you fitter and healthier as a person, but it’ll also reduce the amount of cars releasing fumes.
There are a bunch of other health and fitness apps you can download to meet your goals and reduce your negative impact on the environment.
And there you go - 11 apps you can use to transform your life into one that is healthier, greener, more sustainable, and environmentally-friendly. This is our home, so let’s do everything we can to save it.