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Starter for 10: Going Plastic Free

So with plastic becoming more of a ‘thing’ that is ok to be in the news, I thought I’d post some easy ways to get started on your plastic free journey. It’s a journey, and not something you can accomplish overnight. Here goes..

  1. Use reusable bags when you go shopping…preferably something that will biodegrade at the end of its usable/repairable life like cotton or hemp but start with what you’ve already got in the cupboard and reuse it til death do you part! Bags are easy to make yourself too (you can use old bedsheets/ old t-shirts, it’s a cheap way of making a new bag!) check out www.morsbags.com
  2. Use reusable mugs and bottles  when you go shopping, working, skiing, hiking, doing the ironing, skydiving…once purchased, a mug or bottle will last you a lifetime if you look after it and save hundreds of thousands of bottles and takeaway cups going to landfill and polluting our oceans. For my recommendation check out Klean Kanteen
  3. Buy loose soap and shampoo soap instead of liquid soap/shampoo. An easy swap to make but again, saving you tons of plastic. We buy our local soap from Stirling Health Foods and our shampoo soap from Lush, but when purchasing simply take your own bag or container to save any unnecessary packaging.
  4. Invest in reusable mesh or cotton produce bags so that when you’re in your local big-ish supermarket you can choose the plastic free fruit/veg. We use Lidl and Tesco regularly, both have loose fruit and veg we buy like this. Also, in Lidl bakery, they sell loose bread and baking, we’ve used our produce bags for these too. Just google “mesh produce bags” and you’ll find a plethora of options to choose from to suit your style!
  5. Make your own, whether it’s oatcakes,  glue or cleaning spray, give it a go. In the age of google, there’s bound to be a recipe or instructions out there!
  6. Go straw-free! Ask for no straw when you’re having a meal out, we don’t need them! If you really, really ‘need’ straws, consider stainless steel, reusable straws and keep one in your handbag/ manbag at all times so you never forget it.
  7. Choose glass or cardboard options if available, everything else will have an element of plastic (yes, even tins). For example – I buy peanut butter in glass, hand creme/moisturiser in glass and bicarbonate of soda in cardboard (see uses here it’s an extremely useful thing to have around!). As a bonus, glass is really great to freeze stuff in!
  8. Embrace your inner charity shop. It’s amazing what you can get at truly discounted prices and plastic free. Include clothing in this – shop around and make charity shops places you go when you’re popping places or having weekend adventures. Just make sure you have a list and try not to go back home with lots of stuff you don’t really need..kind of would defeat the point 😉
  9. Use handkerchiefs instead of tissues (especially tissues in plastic packets). My wee girl takes great comfort from taking a handkerchief to school with her, knowing it’s there when she needs it 🙂
  10. Use soapnuts in a cotton bag instead of laundry liquid. Better for marine life, better for your pocket (it’s a lot cheaper) and minus the plastic packaging. Really good if you’ve got any allergies or eczema.

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