Nikki Reed is trying to only produce one garbage bag of trash a year

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Nikki Reed is popping up more in the news lately. I can’t quite figure out why, though. She’s obviously promoting some stuff but going off her Instagram and most of her interviews, she’s always promoting stuff. Some of these little fluff pieces and pocket interviews read like reminders that she’s still around. They all note every film and project Nikki’s ever done before getting to anything relevant. This Us interview at least asked Nikki to list 25 things about her we may not know. Some of them are predictable, like that she prefers books to movies and that she’s happiest in nature. But some were surprising, like her grandmother was a jewelry designer like Nikki, and that Nikki’s ultimate goal is to only produce one bag of garbage a year.

1. My first job was cutting hair and doing makeup when I was 12 years old.
2. I write kids songs for my daughter and sing them every night at bedtime.
3. I’m most comfortable living in small spaces.
4. I’m happiest in nature.
5. In my free time, I research medicine.
6. If I could reinvent myself again, I would be a lawyer or a doctor.
7. I haven’t had a car for two years.
8. I prefer books [over] movies.
9. I have a huge passion for sustainability and use the plant-based pest repellent Wondercide on some of my (many!) animals.
10. My goal is to produce only one bag of trash per year.
11. Alcohol gives me huge headaches.
12. I cut my own hair. I am the hairdresser of the household.
13. I started riding horses when I was just 2 years old.
14. I have 12 animals, including my chickens, who are allowed to come in the house.
15. I volunteered as a tutor all through elementary school for a fellow student who had Down syndrome.
16. To this day, I still take courses online because I’m a lifelong student. I’m constantly learning and exploring my areas of passion.
17. I moved to Greece when I was 21 in between filming the Twilight movies and I studied Greek.
18. The first play I did was The Tortoise and the Hare and I played the tortoise. My favorite line was: “Slow and steady wins the race.” I still reference that to this day.
19. I do acroyoga. My brother is my partner.
20. I bake bread once a week.
21. I come from a family of artists. My great grandmother was a jewelry designer.
22. I have nine tattoos.
23. I made beaded bracelets in elementary school that I sold for $3 each for lunch money.
24. I prefer wearing no nail polish.
25. I took college math when I was in 7th grade.

[From Us]

It’s an admirable goal. We should all try to cut down on our trash output. I know Nikki promotes sustainability in many of her posts and the products she supports, but I’m curious how close she is to a single bag. Like, I, too, would love to only produce one bag of trash a year. But I am so far from that goal, I couldn’t even think it possible. I’d love to hear how many bags she’s producing now to think that number is a goal she even could set. And I assume she means her home garbage. I assume her Bayou with Love jewelry line produces more than one bag a year. Or do they not have to count their packaging and shipping supplies once they leave their warehouse?

Some of Nikki’s facts about herself are super impressive. I wasn’t even doing college math in college so kudos for tackling it in seventh grade. And this is just a quibble but remember when Nikki said she didn’t hire professional help to care for her daughter? She also said in that interview that she “load(s) up the recycling into the back of the car and we’re going to drive it to the recycling center” every other day. Yet here, Nikki said she hasn’t had a car in two years. So is she splitting hairs with her words? Is it her assistant’s car? Her husband’s? Obviously, she has access to a car on a daily basis. It’s things like that that make me reread some of her other answers and wonder how much weight I should give them.

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Photo credit: Avalon Red

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49 Responses to “Nikki Reed is trying to only produce one garbage bag of trash a year”

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  1. Kersplasha says:

    I read the headline and thought it was a dig at her acting projects bahahahaha.

  2. B says:

    She sounds neurotic

  3. Ariel says:

    I always remember the story she told of her husband throwing away her birth control- and me thinking- red flag!! So the no car thing gave me the same feeling- perhaps he likes to be in control of her comings and goings.
    But perhaps not- perhaps the birth control thing was just a happy, romantic thing.

    If there is a divorce, i predict he stalks her and financially abuses her a-la depp and pitt.

    But she seems sincere in her beliefs and her commitment to the environment, which i find admirable.

  4. Erin says:

    I wonder what type of “research” she is doing on medicine in her free time.

    • CROOKSANDNANNIES says:

      Right?! Laypeople researching medicine gives me pause, especially in this day and age. I don’t want to assume, but that makes me very suspicious of her views on vaccinations.

      In terms of quibbling – “reinvent myself again.” Has she reinvented herself before?

    • thaisajs says:

      Massive red flag right there.

    • Kristen says:

      Even in pieces from US Weekly, I wish that journalists would push back on this language usage. She may spend free time READING ABOUT medicine, but I find it highly unlikely that she spends her time RESEARCHING medicine. It’s problematic.

  5. OriginalLala says:

    I’m always suspicious of celebs who crow on about how X or Y they are – in her case, I know she is trying to live a more sustainable life but rich folks like her live pretty wasteful lives in general, they hover up a lot of resources with one hand, while trying to show off how eco-friendly they are with the other hand.

    • Mac says:

      Fun fact: only 7% of all plastics ever produced have been recycled. Almost all plastic waste in the US is incinerated. If you want to live a sustainable life you need to eliminate your consumption of single use plastic.

      Another fun fact, there is so much plastic in our food and clothes (all synthetic materials are a form of plastic) we all eat the equivalent of a credit card in plastic each week.

      • Becks1 says:

        @Mac I think we have different ideas of “fun” lol.

        (I am trying to cut down on my use of plastic in general though.)

      • Twin falls says:

        “If you want to live a sustainable life you need to eliminate your consumption of single use plastic.“

        This. Recycling is the plastic’s industry sell. Reducing consumption should be the goal.

      • Kristen says:

        Living a sustainable life by cutting down on plastics is another red herring, primarily because it’s also only available to rich people. Pretty much everything comes in plastic, and to shop at stores that don’t use it means having money (and living in an area wealthy enough to have such stores to begin with).

        Packaging industries are the ones that need to change for there to be any noticeable difference to the environment.

  6. Rapunzel says:

    One garbage bag of trash a year? Impossible goal, imo. Unless you never have to buy anything (new toothpaste, mouthwash, dental floss, shampoo). What about kleenex? Food containers/boxes
    Product packaging is the worst for creating garbage. One bag a month is more realistic.

    • Tanguerita says:

      Depends on how big the garbage bag is. Kiddind aside, it’s possible, at least in Europe. There are sustainalbe toothpaste brands and zero waste shampoos, you can buy unpacked produce and bring your own packaging everywhere. In Germany, you can return plastic bottles to the shops and plastic contaners to the farmer markets and buy milk in glass bottles. You stop using paper towels, use cleaning cloths instead. This is just from the top of my head, things that I do, and I am lazy af. It’s not cheap and requires a lot of thought and work, but manageable.

      • Fortuona says:

        She is BFFs with Shailene Woodley who also does not use toothpaste she uses some kind of oil and also into the same stuff .
        She was the one who said she gets her water from local springs and she also does not use shampoo which in now the case with Aaron Rodgers as well as he has not washed his haie while letting it grow out
        And Shai has her glasses line in Chile using recycled plastics

    • Sisi says:

      People in the zerowaste movement often use bulkstores where you can bring your own packaging like used glass jars.
      She likely uses toothpaste tablets and solid soaps and shampoos, which come in paper/carboard wrappers. If she indeed brings her recyclables away every two days, then she doesn’t count those materials as her 1 bag of waste.

      Single use items are usually the first to go when changing to that lifestyle, so she probably uses washable cloth hankerchiefs, napkins, cleaning wipes, diapers, etc.

      • Tangerinetree says:

        Bea Johnson started something like this years ago (google: Bea Johnson 1 mason jar of trash) with her family of four. She’s regular person and hugely inspiring if anyone is interested!

    • Snuffles says:

      I actually knew a guy who did this. Shared an office with him for almost two years. Very interesting guy. He actually got a write up in the Washington Post about it. The comments he got were vicious and the assumptions made about him were completely wrong. He considers himself radically progressive but was also open minded and always up for a good debate. Nice guy and was well liked and respected in the office.

      Now I could never go as far as he did but he did make a lot of good points and gave you a lot to think about.

    • Becks1 says:

      I read a blog once about someone who did this – she didn’t count anything that was recycled, and she composted most of her food waste.

      I think a lot of times people like this recycle everything they can, regardless of whether it can actually be recycled, if that makes sense.

      • schmootc says:

        For a good while after my company moved into a new office building, the cleaning staff were just tossing our recycling in the garbage. So we were all dutifully recycling and yeah, it was still going into the trash. It was very disheartening to hear that when someone finally figured it out and talked to building management about it. Since then, I’ve been skeptical. Like I’m looking at using Ridwell, and searching for “Is Ridwell a scam?” online. Sigh.

    • Lua says:

      A lot of the products mentioned can be composted. Still hard to only have one bag even with composting, recycling cans and paper, and refusing to buy plastic

    • North of Boston says:

      I’m reminded of someone featured in my local paper crowing about how her household didn’t put much trash out each week, comparing herself to other residents with more on the curb, and how much she was saving the town money, and conserving the planet’s resources etc.

      Her goals were fine, but the virtue signaling, patting herself on the back for her moral superiority did … because so much of the rest of the lifestyle she described was actually costing the town more and using more resources than many other households … 4 children, in public schools, for starters.

      We all can do what we can, but I think that sometimes people get caught up on standards and goals in one narrow area and miss the bigger picture.

    • BeanieBean says:

      Rapunzel: everything you listed that people need to buy comes in recyclable packaging; ergo, you’re not throwing away garbage but rather you’re recycling. Much tougher not to obtain the packaging in the first place, but as others here have stated, there are companies that are moving toward that.

  7. carol says:

    it seems that she is very much impressed with herself…

  8. Eurydice says:

    Photo #1 – One garbage bag a year, and she’s wearing it.

    Ok, that was mean, but it was my first reaction. I don’t know about the garbage thing, but good for her to tackle learning Greek – it’s easy to learn tourist Greek, not easy to learn all the grammatical forms. Not sure what she means by “college math” – I took algebra in the 7th grade and geometry in 8th, it wasn’t an unusual thing, but they also teach those in college.

    • SophieJara says:

      Eurydice do you speak Greek? My mom lived there for a long time and it’s her favorite language! But when I go with her I can’t get one sentence out of the guidebook well enough for her friends to understand me 😂

      I wondered about the math too. Not really a format for detail. But was that like a summer enrichment thing? I did one of those. Or was she 6 years ahead in math all through school? In NY and CA the first college math is college algebra and it’s not interchangeable with high school algebra.

      • Eurydice says:

        Yes, Greek is my first language. It can be tricky, but sound out each vowel and pay attention to the stress mark. One word can mean two totally different things if you put the accent on the wrong syllable. A woman I know thought she was complimenting her hostess on her beautiful carpets and, instead, told her she looked a physical wreck.

  9. Nudge says:

    I married an environmentalist and adopted this lifestyle for love. It’s not what I would have chosen on my own but I’m pretty happy with it a decade plus later. We probably don’t produce too much more than a (big) bag of trash per person each year. The low-waste lifestyle was very new to me at first but if you compost organic waste and recycle everything you can, the real trick is to avoid packaging, i.e. by buying as much as possible including shampoo and detergents in the bulk section, using returnable glass bottles, reusable bags, not getting takeout that comes in a million containers, buying less in general, etc.

    There was definitely a learning curve, sometimes it is a pain in the ass, and I don’t believe individual choices will ever make up for government/corporate inaction. I also imagine it’s much different for people with kids and certain disabilities that require disposable equipment. However, I’ve found it beneficial to really think about the choices I make and be more mindful in how I tread on this planet.

    • Concern Fae says:

      Yeah, a large part of what this lifestyle includes is living someplace with stores that selll lots of things as bulk goods and you can bring your own containers. You also make cleaners out of vinegar, etc. and use cloths for cleaning and handkerchiefs instead of Kleenex. There is a vegan smoothie shop near me that has expanded into other food. Lots of customers bring their own mason jars for carry out.

      • Nudge says:

        Yes 100%! I happen to live by a great hippie coop where we can buy almost everything in bulk, from peanut butter to spices to cleaning products. Plus I have access to a compost drop-off that’s convenient to me and a farmer’s market that banned single-use plastic (and you can return glass bottles, return egg cartons, etc etc etc).

        Love long cold winters? May I suggest the paradise that is the greater Albany, NY area, lol.

  10. K says:

    I was hoping it was a euphemism for movies

  11. kimberly says:

    an actual garbage bag is huge, if we’re talking about those huge black ones. The less processed stuff you consume and the more you cook from scratch makes this goal achieveable….if you have a way if compacting as well…good for her

  12. Case says:

    I can’t really wrap my head around one bag of trash per year. Most people I know, myself included, produce like three or four bags of trash per *week* — cat litter, cleanups around the house, food that can’t go down the garbage disposal, etc.

  13. manda says:

    that seems a little out of control restrictive, and that it would lead to hoarding junk, or donating junk. and charity places don’t want people’s garbage

  14. Steph says:

    I’m really disappointed in Nikki. She pushes her eco friendly, no waste “lifestyle” pretty hard in interviews and social media and I find it to be completely disingenious. For ex., she points out here she hasn’t owned a car in two years- that’s a misleading statement because her husband Ian has been photographed with him driving Nikki around. So, her husband owns the car and drives them around. She has also previously talked about how she goes to the recycling center every day with her toddler daughter. I’m going to assume Ian drives them or she drives “Ian’s” car. She’s spinning this to look more eco-friendly than she truly is.

    Also, she pushes a zero-waste and minimalist lifestyle 24-7 but her instagram is non-stop advertisements trying to persuade her online following to consume, consume, consume and buy buy buy her products. It really put me off to her cause because she exploits the sustainability movement like the true capitalist she is. She labels it “conscious consumerism” as long as they are constantly consuming whatever she is selling. It’s hypocritical.

    As for the haircutting, her horrendous covid-bangs and her husbands mop of unkempt hair now make sense. Also, as for her first job cutting hair and make up at 12? That’s such BS, what a joke. Cutting hair is highly regulated and 12 years old are not licensed for that. I find her exhausting.

  15. Teebee says:

    It’s an admirable goal. But I wonder how achievable. I’d rather just commit to making better choices all round, and strive for consistency.

    Our city recently converted us to plastic bins that are lifted into garbage trucks. A large black one for garbage, a smaller green one for food scraps and we’re to use blue recycling plastic bags for recycling. The black bin is only picked up every 2 weeks, the other two weekly. I thought NO WAY I could handle garbage being picked up every 2 weeks and only being allowed what fit into this can where the lid had to be shut flat. There are 5 adults living in my house, 2 dogs and a cat.

    We started composting in our garden, learned exactly what is recyclable.

    Well. It works wonderfully! We diligently put out our recycling and food scraps bin each week, average 2-3 bags of recycling. And produce only about 4 bags of garbage every 2 weeks! Easily about 2/3 of our black bin space. Before the bins we easily threw away so much garbage that could have been composted or recycled. We produced 4-5 bags of garbage a week!

    Even though there was so much whining before the bins were distributed, since implementation, no one complains, our bins are rolled out diligently as instructed. I love what this has achieved, it definitely smartened us up. We are behind a lot of provinces that already started this program, but we finally caught up.

    Good for all of us as we change and adapt. I also got my first hybrid vehicle. We are but a small contribution to change for better, I can only hope this is better than no change at all.

  16. Lucy says:

    Alcohol gives her a headache, doesn’t her husband have a tequila or some liquor line?

  17. Jules says:

    All I can think of with her and her husband is the SNL skit Climate Change. It rips on woke celebs preaching climate change.
    And to list 25 things about yourself that we may not know– WHO cares?! You gotta have a lot of self importance to even sit down and write that crap out.

    • Emma says:

      At least they’re doing something to try to help. “Woke” is not a pejorative. This is not the Daily Mail.

      • Jules says:

        I don’t know what goes on at the Daily Mail, never get my news there… but it seems the only people who get offended by performative woke being called out is the performative woke!

  18. MaryContrary says:

    She is insufferable.

  19. lisa taylor says:

    Noble goal but how?

  20. Emma says:

    Realistically we need industries to change and individual action is a drop in the bucket but at least she’s raising some awareness…

  21. canichangemyname? says:

    She lost me with the mom-bragging. I’m very honest in saying I don’t know who she is – I do remember her SO from LOST.

  22. HeatherC says:

    “In my free time I research medicine” is triggering anti vaxx sentiments for me. Like they do their own research on vaccines and medicine and all that and become “experts” in those fields because Google.

    Or I may be a little sensitive to it as a strident pro vaxx before COVID and more so now.