By Sarah Wroblewski

NEWBURYPORT (CBS) — From recycling to renewable energy, there are a lot of ways to help the environment. But are we doing enough at home?

Shampoo bottles, toothpaste tubes, and even the sponge you use in the kitchen all contain plastic. According to a report in 2021, the average American uses and throws away 110 pounds of single-use plastic every year.

“Only nine-percent of plastic is actually able to be recycled. So that’s 91-percent of the plastic that you’re using that is still out there somewhere,” says Ashley Regan, owner of Green House.

Green House is nestled in downtown Newburyport. It is a zero-waste, sustainable lifestyle shop run by a mother and daughter team. Gina and Ashley offer plastic-free alternatives to everyday household products.

“We wanted to help our community just live a little more sustainably and greener,” says Regan.

Going green is colorful in the eco-friendly shop that houses reusable, recycled, and compostable items. The heart of the store is along the back wall, where customers come to re-fill household products using their own bottles if they wish, limiting the need for single use plastic.

“We have all kinds of personal care and cleaning products mostly. Hand soap, dish soap, laundry detergent, shampoo and conditioner, body wash,” Regan told WBZ-TV.

Going green doesn’t mean you need to spend more green at the fill station here. The prices are pretty comparable to what you’d find at a typical store.

“The cool thing about the re-fill, you can take just a little bit to try,” Regan said as she demonstrated how to use the fill station.

Having options and the choice of different products can make the transition to a healthier home and planet an easier one.

“I mean just a simple swap, like my kids use these little bamboo toothbrushes instead of the plastic ones, how easy is that,” Regan said.

“Our drier balls are like the number one seller,” she added. “They replace dryer sheets and they are made out of wool, they cut down on your drying time. And they all bounce around in there so they fluff up your laundry really nicely as well.”

Regan also showed what solid dish soap is so you can get rid of the plastic bottle near the sink.

“So, it’s just like a bar of soap, but you can use it to wash your dishes,” Regan says while demonstrating how it works. “This is super popular. One of our best sellers, for sure.”

Regan advises to not be overwhelmed, saying one small change can make a difference.

“We’re not looking for perfection. We’re looking for people to make small, simple steps,” she said.

To learn more about Green House and ways to be more environmentally friendly in your home, visit greenhousegoods.com.

Sarah Wroblewski