Some Simple Plastic Free Ideas
Our Earth has been going through so many changes and recently we have experienced droughts, bushfires, floods and now we are all being affected in some way by COVID-19.
With this terrible pandemic forcing us to make drastic changes again, it is the time that we all start looking deeper to see what we can do help our earth recover. Now we have had to reduce our consumption and share our resources more so than ever, we can do our best to keep our changed mindset. We have all had to reduce and reuse, so let's keep this going.
We have all seen the footage of plastic pollution in The Great Pacific Garbage Patch which is one example of the waste from our throw away lifestyle. This waste is taken into the oceans from our creeks and rivers and also contains fishing lines, fishing nets and waste from ships. Plus, just because we throw our waste away into our landfill bins, doesn't mean it stays in landfill either
We can look after the world, our wildlife and us with some simple positive changes to our lifestyle.
So this is some plastic free ideas to help inspire you. Some that are a little bit different, some you may have seen already and some that people don't really think of.
1. Reusable Produce Bags
It is so wonderful that bans have come into effect to stop the use of single use shopping bags but you can reduce more plastic at the supermarket by using reusable bags for your fruit and veges. I use Onya Produce Bags and the main reason I chose them is because they are made from 100% Recycled Plastic Bottles. Not only are you saving plastic use, you also support the Recycling Process. Some supermarkets have introduced green bags but check with them if they are Compostable not just Biodegradable bags which still only breakdown into micro plastics (which is another topic in itself).
2. Avoid Plastic Film - Always
Plastic film is definitely one to move away from. Due to the type of plastic, it cannot be recycled in roadside services. REDcycle can only recycle a couple of brands and if you aren't returning your plastics to their service, it is best to avoid this plastic film. Other options include Beeswax Wraps, Silicone Bowl Covers, Washable Bowl Covers and using containers.
3. Buy Matches not Lighters
Obviously it is better for you and the planet if you don't smoke, but there are also a lot of people lighting campfires, candles and incense too. With plastic lighters being one of the most picked up item in clean ups, make the switch to matches. They have Biodegradable packaging and Redheads state on their website that they are made from sustainably managed forests.
4. Buy a Metal Watering Can
As plastic breaks down in the sunlight, how many plastic watering cans have you bought from leaving them outside? I know before I made the change over I would have bought at least four. The thicker plastic breaks up into smaller pieces and it is these smaller pieces that do the most damage to our environment. A metal watering can is more expensive but you will only ever have to buy one.
5. Sustainably Made Coffee Cups
There are so many different types of reusable coffee/travel cups available now in different shapes, sizes and patterns. I really like Huskee Cups and have them available in the Eco Travel Pack. They are made from repurposed coffee husks and you can imagine how much left over husks are generated in the coffee manufacturing process. This company is all about helping us to reduce and reuse with their Huskee Swap initiative if you choose to participate (see link for details of the Huskee Swap.)
6. Use Bamboo Makeup Pads
Single use items are a major problem and as soon as we can move away from all our single use the better. Although most pads are made from cotton fibre, they are not made to be washed and reused. This creates an item that takes years to breakdown in landfill or clogging oceans from being disposed of in the sewerage system. I use EverEco Bamboo Pads and stock them my store because they are an Ethical company that I want to support, I really like the feel of them and they come in their own wash bag.
7. Ditch Shampoo in Bottles
There are millions of Shampoo Bottles thrown into landfill every year and the first bottle ever made is still lingering around somewhere. I switched over to Shampoo Bars last year and love them. Yes there is a small transition period as your hair and scalp adjust, but I can say that I didn't have any real problems. I have been using Flipster Shampoo Bars which are handmade in Brisbane. As I have curly hair I have always felt I needed some extra conditioning, even with liquid shampoo and I use this beautiful DIY Conditioner which is great to use in the shower as usual or as a leave in.
8. Keep Glass Jars for Storage
Reusing your glass jars is the perfect storage solution. As it's clear you can see what is in it, the lids seal tight and keep out the bugs plus they can be safely stored in the fridge or cupboard. Use them to make Chia Seed Puddings or store extra gravy and sauces. You can use scrap material or Beeswax Wraps under or over the lid to dress them up a bit and to add that extra seal. As we don't have a roadside recycling service here and can only recycle glass, cardboard and e-waste at our local refuse station, I buy as much as I can in glass jars. Depending on the size of the jar, I always keep them for storage.
Read about our DIY Hair Conditioner
Read about Earth Day in Isolation ideas
Read about our Product Spotlight of the Keep it Clean Pack