TIPS TO REDUCE PLASTIC WASTE
Simple ways to reduce plastic consumption
- Re-use everything you possibly can!
- Be prepared - Take your own cutlery with you if you're going to grab a takeaway lunch. If you're likely to grab a coffee when out, remember to take a clean reusable coffee cup. Going shopping? Then take some bags with you. There's no need to carry all these things unnecessarily everyday and hurt your back, but just give yourself a moment to think about what you might need before heading out for the day.
- Use your own water bottle and take it with you when you're out and about. You can re-fill it at work, or if you ask nicely at food shops/cafes. There are now many water re-fill stations around at train stations etc, and you can easily use apps like 'Refill' to find your nearest re-fill station too. Using your own water bottle also benefits from making sure you're drinking enough water throughout the day, as it'll be easier to keep track of!
- Packed lunches - If working away from home, prepare your lunches that can be stored in lunch boxes or wrapped in beeswax wrap sheets. Don't forget to pack a cloth napkin too!
- Replace wipes - Anything that resembles a tissue can be replaced by a reusable. Cloth napkins, cosmetic pads, handkerchiefs, kitchen towels are all easily found in zero-waste shops nowadays, or you can use your fabric scraps to make your own!
- Use bar soaps instead of liquid hand soaps and liquid body washes. Make sure you opt for natural products though to ensure you don't put any nasties onto your body and dry out your skin. Some bar soaps can last a lot longer than liquid soaps which is a bonus. My toothpaste soap bar lasts significantly longer than toothpaste tubes! And if you have the patience, you can try and use shampoo bars too, although there is a lot of trial and error in finding the right one for an individual's hair.
- Freeze food items that you might not get round to eating. Freeze them in reusable containers or bags. All those pesky plastic takeaway containers are good for this, as they are small enough to stack, and will save you from binning them.
- Shop local - Check out any local food shops and markets you may be in the presence of. Many of these small food shops tend to sell fresh produce loose. You'll also be supporting local trade! If you're lucky enough, there may even be some shops that offer refilling stations for household products.
As much as we can try to limit our plastic use, it is not always possible to avoid plastic completely. Did you know, the Co-op now offer a soft plastics recycling scheme (of any brand), including crisp packets. Just remember to clean them first! This is an absolute gem of a service, as I hardly have any domestic general waste left anymore! The Co-op claim that all their own packaging is recyclable too! You can find out more about it by clicking here.
It may feel like we're not doing much to help the mass waste problem our world is currently under, but remember, if all of us made these small alternate choices, then collectively, we can massively reduce the amount of plastic waste. So go and start that ripple effect!
Please note: A KIND CLOTH is in no way affiliated to any of the external links provided, or brands mentioned.