Blog, Lifestyle

Reducing our plastic footprint

I’ve spent a lot of time at home over the Easter holidays and have been considering ways to reduce our household plastic usage. Like many people I try not to buy things in plastic but it is something that still finds its way into our recycling bin.

Although I think that we’re pretty good on the whole I know that we can still make changes. Since I’ve been reviewing what we do I thought I’d come up with a list of simple ways to reduce your plastic footprint.

Bags
Use your own bags. This is such an easy one. I keep a stash of re-usable bags in the boot of my car and use a back-pack when I’m just shopping for bits and pieces. Now that most major retailers charge you for a carrier bag there is even more incentive.

Cleaning Products
Re-fill your cleaning products. Save the bottles from your cleaning products and get a re-fill. Many health food stores offer this way of buying your essential cleaning liquids, as do some farm shops. Plus, they are almost always eco friendly so you’ll be helping the environment in other ways too! I’ve just recently started saving empty bottles so that I can do this. I’ve also worked out that it will be cheaper than buying the product in a bottle too. Bonus.

Straws
Don’t use plastic straws, opt for paper or metal. I’ve been told it’s all the rage with the local teenagers here. They are buying an individual metal straw in a cute pouch and carrying it with them to use in their drinks. I love this craze. We currently use paper straws at home (very rarely and mostly for birthday parties) but I think I’m going to buy some metal ones so that I can be cool too. Hehehe.

Self Care
Think about your beauty products. You can use soap or shampoo bars, or refillable bottles (as above). I love the shampoo bars, they last ages.

Try using a cleanser with cotton pads or a flannel, rather than face wipes and wet wipes. Wipes are clogging our sewers and making their way into our seas. I know wipes are a convenience rather than a necessity so I try not to use them. I have some biodegradable face wipes that I use only when I’ve worn very stubborn make-up. The rest of the time I opt for cotton pads or a good ol’ face flannel.

Your morning cuppa
How do you like your tea? Did you know that some tea bags contain plastic? Seriously. With 96% of us Brits choosing a bag over loose leaf tea that’s a lot of plastic. Country Living magazine have come up with a useful list of brands that do and don’t use plastic. This one isn’t such an issue for me because I don’t really drink regular tea. Thankfully my favourite mint tea is produced by one of brands that don’t use plastic. Phew!

I hope that you’ve found this post helpful and have found a change that you can make today. I’m sure that there are many more ideas out there for reducing your plastic use so please comment with your ideas.