Essentials for going plastic free
Written by Emmanuelle Gammage
A quick search on Instagram or Pinterest would have you believe that a plastic free lifestyle is a kitchen lined with glass jars and pretty labels on wooden shelves, and a fridge full of organic premade meals for the week.
It sounds amazing.
I wish my plastic-free life did look as aesthetic as that, but it’s not realistic. More so, it’s not necessary! Because you only need a few staple hacks and products to drastically reduce your plastic consumption. Luckily, our team at SaveMoneyCutCarbon are pro’s and know exactly how to help you on your journey.
Why should I go plastic free?
I don’t want to bombard you with all the devastating statistics but it’s common knowledge that plastic is ruining our planet. Single-use plastic is pretty much everywhere we look, whether you’re shopping in the supermarket or brushing your teeth. The main problem, is that most (if not all) of the plastic you’ve used in your life, is still sitting in landfill somewhere.
By repurposing what we already have and investing in a few everlasting products, we can reduce our plastic consumption and encourage others to do the same. The small actions of many individuals do make a difference and we can all be a part of the change.
How do I go plastic free?
I spoke to some of the team and they’ve shared their secrets to a plastic free lifestyle! We’re a mix of busy parents, new home owners and on-the-go adventurers, so you’re certain to find at least one product or hack to suit you.
Pretty much every team member recommended Stasher! Rachel uses Stasher bags for her daughters packed lunch and she always takes a Pocket Stasher Bag full of raisins for emergency snacking in the car. Rachel’s husband was dubious at first because of their pricey upfront cost but he’s a convert now! After months of use, he’s realised that they’re actually saving money in the long term, and saving tons of unnecessary plastic waste.
Find out why Stasher bags are so expensive here.
Personally, I keep a Stasher bag in my tote bag full of the day’s essentials. I often spend the weekends exploring new places or visiting my friends in London, and Stasher comes in super handy on my travels. As I’m a bit of a messy person who constantly misplaces her keys, keeping all of my makeup or chargers in one place saves me fumbling around trying to find them at the bottom of my bag.
Ecoegg Laundry Egg and Dryer Egg
Liz describes finding ecoegg as a ‘eureka moment’. At first, Liz’s family couldn’t get their heads around the whole no liquids or washing tablets thing, but it’s been a total game changer. As Liz’s family is pretty active, the washing pile quickly adds up but even though she buys refill pellets every month for her ecoegg Laundry Egg, she still saves just over £20 a month in comparison to regular washing detergents. Plus, just think how many plastic bottles she’s saving!
But everyone is different! Kirsty prefers a strong fragrance so she uses her ecoegg with a mix of Smol for her towels, gym kit and work wear. Easy sustainable living is all about finding the perfect solution that works for your family.
OceanSaver Eco Drops
Just like Stasher, all of the team were quick to recommend the OceanSaver Eco Drops. Tim calls them “a really simple way to reduce plastic” because all you need is a spare plastic bottle and the magic drops.
Traditional anti-bac sprays come in a different plastic bottle each time which most likely ends up in landfill. Also, they’re mostly filled with water so when they’re transported to the supermarket, you’re essentially releasing more carbon dioxide into the world for water that you already have at home. By choosing OceanSaver you can reduce your plastic and carbon emissions.
Rachel, Hazel and Liz all love how much space it frees up in the kitchen cupboard! Liz sometimes finds herself worrying that something is missing under the sink, but it turns out it’s just a lot of unnecessary plastic bottles.
Plastic has become a daily part of our lives that many of us probably don’t even notice how much we really consume. But it all comes down to mindset. By making a conscious effort to acknowledge and reduce our plastic, we can live more sustainably.
Reusable Bamboo Makeup Remover Pads
I’ll admit it, I used to remove my makeup with face wipes. But after researching the devastating impact they have on our Earth, I switched to Bambaw Reusable Bamboo Makeup Remover Pads. They’re softer on my skin, they scrub away the day’s makeup better and I just have to pop them in the wash before using them again. It’s one of the easiest swaps I’ve made and because I often wear makeup, it’s made a huge difference to my personal plastic consumption.
More tips for a plastic free lifestyle
Kirsty is an eco-warrior and she has a long list of plastic free tips and recommendations! She ventures to her local refill shop for washing up liquid, hand soap, toilet cleaner and cooking oils. She also takes her own tupperware to the butchers and her own bag to the bakery – I aspire to be this level of organised!
Luckily, all it takes is a bit of exploring and pre-planning to find out the best routine for your family. It’s important to remember that sustainability looks different to everyone so there’s no ‘right’ way to do it, as long as you’re doing what you can.
Hazel and Kirsty also opt for solid soaps instead. Not only do they reduce your plastic consumption, but they also look a lot neater in your shower too. Kirsty recommends the Dove soap bars.
I was always put off by solid soap bars because they didn’t look as pretty as some of the plastic containers, but I swapped last year and I can’t believe I didn’t do it sooner! They last for ages because you don’t accidentally squeeze half of the bottle into your palm, and they smell just as good too.
A habit I’ve been trying to master since the first lockdown began, is making a packed lunch to take to work. I had good intentions but due to bad time management (you could call it laziness), I’d end up buying a £3 meal deal from Tesco. Using our plastic free lunch tips with my Stasher bag has finally given me the motivation to meal prep, and it was way easier than I thought. It’s saved me a lot of money and massively reduced my single-use plastic, a win-win!
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