how to be plastic free - in ways that you might not have thought of
You probably know the first steps to being plastic free, like using a metal straw, bringing your own bottle with you everywhere, keeping your own carrier bags in the car etc.
Here's a few steps to being plastic free that you may not have thought of! Or if you're an ethical pro, you probably do know, and so feel free to feel smug about that.
ice cream cone, not ice cream tub
This might be the easiest thing you could do and it might be obvious to most, but maybe you didn't think about this. Refuse that tub, refuse that little colourful plastic spoon. You don't need it in your life, just go for the cone. If you don't like the cone, just give it to your friend, stranger, anyone around you.
doughnuts instead of biscuits or crisps
You can get doughnuts package free or in cardboard, unlike crisps and biscuits that are wrapped in plastic packaging that can't even be recycled. Also, doughnuts can easily be vegan, an extra tick for that one. Shout out to Beige Donuts.
eat out, resist takeaway
Although this obviously isn't an option right now, one day we'll be back in the real world again. We can stop having the boring conversation of 'what shall we cook tonight'. Takeaway involves so much waste, plastic tubs, cutlery and chop sticks are all over the place. Just eat at the restaurant/cafe instead.
eating in - grow
Grow your own salad and herbs, or buy them grown - in a pot. All you need, is a window and some spare water. I recommend placing these pots near your kitchen sink. Who ever finishes a bag of salad? I can't remember the last time I bought salad that wasn't already going slimy before I even got it home. Plus, mint and basil smell so good.
loose tea all the way
It's starting to become common knowledge, but a lot of people still aren't aware that tea bags are sealed with plastic. The boxes are also wrapped in plastic. Tea brands are starting to change, but they're taking their sweet time to do it. So let loose instead. Check out Blend.ed tea.
stop with the gum
Did you know chewing gum has plastic in it? It's mostly made of plastic. It contains Polyethylene (think plastic bags) and Polyvinyl acetate (think PVA glue). Why are you putting that in your mouth? And then why are people throwing it on the floor.... go for a mint instead, or maybe just clean your teeth.
The ones that are wrapped together in plastic. Like a pack of cans that are so lovingly wrapped together in a big plastic hug. Don't do it. Let them be free.
when in doubt, pick the can not the bottle
Because we can't avoid everything, go for the can instead. Majority of cans are made from post-consumer aluminium and can be recycled again and again. Plastic cannot be recycled again and again, as it loses its properties that make it desirable. Plus, aluminium is aluminium. It's not as simple as plastic is plastic. There's PETE, HDPE, LDPE, PP, PVC, PS, and the worst category, 'other'. You can't mix different properties together, so majority of plastic doesn't get recycled. Drinks bottles are PETE.
i had a thought
about soap bars
So, most people I know have slowly started replacing their plastic bottles of shampoo, conditioner, shaving foam, body wash, and soap etc. for bars. I now have a real collection, but I'm having trouble with them. It appears most of my bars are the same colour. oops. What's what? When buying soap bars, think about having different colours.
flowers and candles instead of chemicals
I have dried lavender in my bathroom, in my lounge and in my bedroom. I also have candles and a diffuser in the lounge. Use natural scents instead of using chemical sprays and plastic air fresheners for unwanted smells. Also, lavender in your bedroom helps you sleep.
Think about the plastic packaging on the outside or the plastic pouch. If you knew about that and thought, whatever, think about how filters are also plastic. Then imagine them breaking up into micro-plastic. That's definitely going to be a snack for non-smoking fish.
don't flush when
Well not every time. This point isn't about plastic.... but flushing uses up to 13 litres of water at a time. While we're all at home, we can resist flushing every time. Depending on you diet, pee is mostly water anyways. You could also buy plastic free toilet roll, like from 'Who gives a crap'. But I don't know if you heard, your not buying toilet roll anytime soon.