10 Plastics To Give Up In Celebration of World Environment Day
Happy World Environment Day everyone! This year, the focus is on ending plastic pollution. Plastic is a nightmare and is causing so much trouble in our environment. It is our jobs to combat this issue and I have a few recommendations for you. They are simple and easy ways to cut back on single-use plastic.
Single-use plastics are really easy to avoid using. Some things may require a small investment but over time, it will be totally worth it. The best part is that if you just change one thing, you can change so much. If you change more, even better!
These are 10 types of plastic, not all of which are single-use, that we can stop using today.
Most people are already making the switch over to material bags that are reusable. Many countries and shops are also banning or discontinuing the use of plastic bags altogether.
I love my Woolworths ones the most. I have also stopped using the bags in the vegetable section, instead I have FreshBags from Faithful-to-Nature. The bags are 100% reusable, made using meshed fabric. They are easy to take along to the shops. I keep all my bags together and take them out in the morning before I go shopping to make sure I don’t forget them.
Yes, these little plastic juice transportation devices are terrible! They are scattered everywhere… Like at the beach, filling up landfills and all those other places they should never be! If you are super conscious of drinking from a container (because ew! germs) then invest in a reusable straw.
My metal straw goes everywhere with me. I don’t always need it but it is there if I do. It is also handy to note that you can message your delivery guy and ask him to leave the straws at the takeaway place.
If you do end up using a straw, don’t throw it away. Rather place it in an empty 2-litre bottle. You can place all your oopsie single-use plastic in this bottle and create an ecobrick. Ecobricks are being used to build a number of different things. Once your bottle is filled, donate it to the Ecobrick Exchange.
Yup, these tiny (hence the word micro) balls of toxic plastic simply wash down the drain into our water system where they absorb all the toxins and chemicals they encounter. The microbeads are so small that they usually slip right through the water system and end up being flushed into rivers and the ocean. The toxic balls then poison our ocean fish which eventually poisons us.
You can find them in almost every exfoliating face scrub on the shelf and even in your toothpaste, imagine how your poor enamel must feel? They are in a variety of other beauty products too. If you are unsure if a product contains them the label will list them as either polyethylene, polypropylene, polyethylene terephthalate or polymethyl methacrylate.
Toothbrushes are a part of our daily lives and we are encouraged to change our toothbrushes every 3 to 6 months or after every time we get sick. Can you imagine how many toothbrushes we contribute to landfills in a lifetime? That is why alternatives like bamboo toothbrushes are becoming a massive thing.
Plastic Water Bottles
Reusable glass or metal bottles are in fashion and nearly every shop has a section where you can find fun bottles. If you just have to have ‘filtered’ water, fit a filter onto your tap or buy one of those fancy water jugs that have a built-in filter. I recently bought a filtered water jug for the fridge and I am loving it!
What I also do is keep my fancier gin bottles and fill them with water. This is a nice thing to have if you don’t want to spend money on a bottle. Reusing, reducing and recycling should always be your first stop before buying new.
Coffee Capsules (OK, not plastic but still)
Yes, you read that right! If you invested in an expensive coffee system that makes use of a capsule that only has one serving I am are sorry to tell you that they are really bad for the environment! I think the idea of convenience has made us incredibly lazy. Making a fresh brew from coffee grounds may require a little more effort but my goodness the effort is worth a better cup of coffee.
Coffee grounds are also great for the environment, they enrich the soil and make a great compost! They are also pretty perfect as a body scrub so owning a French press is a much better option.
I know that razor blades are ridiculously expensive but owning a lifelong razor is better for the environment because it lasts. Disposable razors last at most 4 uses before they become useless. Once it is used up, you throw the whole thing away, blade and plastic included whereas a reusable razor, you only change out the blades.
If that isn’t an option then embracing body hair is your next best option. Companies are way more relaxed about beards these days. As for us ladies… you only really need to shave in summer anyway so tell your partner to get used to it as the colder months creep in.
Takeaway Coffee Cups
Most coffee shops are becoming aware of their impact on the environment. They are making changes but there are still many that do not have alternatives. Take your own reusable mug into the coffee shop. If they refuse to use your cup, you are better off supporting a business that is more environmentally conscious.
The plastic knives don’t work and neither do the forks so it is better to avoid them. Most places are starting to supply wooden alternatives anyway. As mentioned in the straw section above, message your delivery guy and make sure he doesn’t bring you any plastic cutlery.
Bars of soap do an equally good job and nowadays there are so many divine soap shops you can find every kind of soap you could imagine. Just remember to check the ingredients of mass-produced soaps as they too can contain microbeads. The shower gel comes in a bottle whereas soap is wrapped in a small amount of paper. If you cannot give up shower gel, stores like Lush offer a bottle recycling programme that gives you a free face mask when you return the empty packaging. They also offer solid bubble bath and shampoo.
You can take up the challenge to reduce your plastic usage today.
With My Love,