As society wakes up to the negative impact that single-use plastic has on our world. Now is the perfect opportunity to join the movement and start making changes to our own lifestyles.
A few months ago I did a post that was at the beginning of my plastic pollution journey. I shared with you some of the simplest ways to use less plastic. Focusing on just 5 different solutions that everyone could try as they don’t involve any big changes to your usual day to day routines. With so many new ideas, reusable items and eco-friendly plastic free options out there, there is so much choice for someone just starting their plastic free journey. Then with each change, there is a big impact on reducing our plastic waste and are all everyday switches.
Now I am further down my single-use plastic free journey, I am going to share a few more simple ways to use less plastic.
Straws. We see them everywhere and they are one of the most collected items on beach cleans all over the world. The best thing to do is to say no to using a straw when offered one. They aren’t necessary for all of us, only used for a few minutes then take hundreds of years to disappear. If you are someone who needs to straw to help you drink or someone who just loves to use a straw (like myself) then the best thing you can do is to invest in a reusable straw. You can find many types of reusable straw too; glass, paper, metal, bamboo. All brilliant and a simple way to use less plastic. I personally have a set of metal straws, that I carry with me everywhere. Living in a pouch in my handbag. Ready to be used when we go out for meals, to a party, or a weekend in the van.
My straws have come from Plastic Freedom, a UK based online plastic free store. Full to the brim of plastic free goodies!
Take Your Own Water Bottle
Water is something that we all need and is something that a lot of us do not drink enough of. This way of using less plastic will not only help the environment but our health too. A double win right? Take your own water bottle with you. Heading out for a day in town or to the beach, then save money and plastic by filling your own water bottle before you go. This means you will have a constant supply of water and by having it easily accessible you are more likely to drink it. Water bottles are easy to get hold of, as most supermarkets and other stores will stock them. My bottle is from Water To Go. What attracted me to this bottle was the filter in it. It means that when I am hiking or on long days I could refill it from streams and rivers. The filter in the bottle will filter out 99% of the bacteria and viruses in the water, making it safe to drink.
If you run out of the water while you’re out and about, the first thought is to then purchase a water bottle. You don’t need to now. Recently I have started using the Refill app. Now I know this app is designed to work in the UK, not too sure what alternatives there are elsewhere in the world. This app will scan the area you are in and tell you which local businesses are refill centres. Find the one closest to you, take you empty reusable bottle in and they will fill up your bottle for free. Then log that you have refilled at that centre on the app and you get points. At 1000 points you get a mystery prize!
One room in the house that is getting easier and easier to start going plastic free is the bathroom. Shampoo bars, conditioner bars, metal razors, bamboo toothbrushes and just a few that can be swapped in your bathroom to start going plastic free. However, I do not recommend going out and buying these straight away. Do it gradually, when your current bottle runs out then purchase the plastic free alternative. My personal favourite switch has been getting a metal razor and shaving cream bar. It’s easy to use so many plastic razor heads and each one ends up in the landfill. This is such a simple way to use less plastic and get a fantastically smooth shave. If you are not too sure where to start with toiletry swaps, I’d say start with shampoo, its one we are likely to get through fast and is likely to be your first swap. Try visiting stores such as Lush, where you can go and look at the shampoo bars. The staff will also try to help you find the right one for you too.
If you want to read more about my toiletry swaps have a look at my Plastic Free Toiletries blog post. Where I share all my swaps in a bid to use less plastic and what I think about the swaps I’ve made.
Plastic/Waste Free Shops
This is something that gets me really excited for the future. Plastic & waste free shops are popping up all over the country at the moment. I have found 3 local shops to me, all found via social media. They are only small stores so don’t have a huge following, it might take a bit of searching for you to find your local stores. Unfortunately, I haven’t yet had the time to visit them. I have been looking at their websites and social media info which include being able to take your own jars in to buy pasta and rice, buy veg that is not wrapped in plastic, get eco-friendly cleaning products, plastic free toiletries and plenty more.
If you don’t have any shops local to your area there are other places you can shop with less plastic too. Your local farmer’s markets, butchers and farm shops will offer plastic free veg and meats. (Just remember your own containers!). Also if you head into Morrisons you can get your meat plastic free in your own containers.
This isn’t something that you have to do all the time. At the moment it can be a bit more expensive or a little less convenient for some people. However just making one purchase every couple of weeks can help these stores to grow and help you to use less plastic.
So these are just a few more simple ways to use less plastic. Let me know which ones you like and be sure to check out my first post. Simple Ways To Use Less Plastic.
See you next time and happy adventuring!
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