If you follow along with me on social media or if you’re an avid reader of the blog, you’ll know that we have been making a conscious effort over the last few years to reduce the number of single-use plastics we bring into our home. Now, I’m going to start here by saying that I’m by no means perfect. I certainly haven’t nailed this but I have changed a number of things that have helped reduce our footprint and can safely say that I have a new mentality when it comes to waste and plastics.
I heard about Plastic Free July a couple of years ago and I knew right away that I wanted to help spread the word and share some ways that we have made changes in our daily lives to do our part as a family! For those of you who may not know, Plastic Free July originally started as a small month-long, movement in Australia 8 years ago (with a goal to reduce single-use plastic consumption in everyday life), that has now turned into a global movement (engaging over a million people in 150 countries!) encouraging people to refuse single-use plastics in hopes to be a part of the solution to plastic pollution. By getting on board with this movement we will work toward helping to clean up our communities and supporting the movement to grow beyond our local streets!
Below are a few ways we’ve worked towards reducing single-use plastics in our home! I hope that you’re able to take some of these ideas and incorporate them into your household as well! Even the smallest of changes can make a big impact over time!
A few years ago, I made the switch to natural deodorant (read all about my journey with that, here!) and after I accomplished that I wanted to make the switch to more natural products and next on my list was natural shampoo and conditioner and that’s when I came across Unwrapped Life! Unwrapped Life’s products are made from naturally-derived active ingredients and scented with 100% essential oils and just so happen to be vegan!
Not only do their shampoo and conditioner bars work wonders for my hair type but I also fell in love with their products on an environmentally-conscious level as well as they are plastic-free and have no packaging!
Whenever I go grocery shopping I like to bring my own reusable bags (when we are allowed to, of course. I know there are some restrictions around this still due to COVID in some areas) to pack my groceries home in. I LOVE the French Market bags from Dreamy White Lifestyle and Market Bags for my produce.
On the topic of reusable market and produce bags, I have been LOVING the Stasher reusable silicone bags! Instead of using single-use plastic sandwich bags opt for a reusable alternative instead! The cherry on top? These bags are not only non-toxic, but they are microwave/dishwasher safe and can be stored in the fridge and freezer!
I try SO HARD to bring my Yeti mug with me everywhere I go but for some reason, this one is always hard to remember! So, if I happen to stop by Starbucks to grab a coffee and I’ve forgotten my travel mug, I always make sure to buy one of their reusable coffee cups with a lid … in fact, I’ll buy 5 of them at a time as I like to bring them home and give them to our visitors! For example, if my dad comes over and wants a coffee for the road, I’ll use one of these cups instead of a single-use disposable cup!
In our household, we’ve eliminated plastic wraps thanks to Goldilocks Wraps! Goldilocks Wraps are reusable beeswax wraps that are eco-friendly and a brilliant alternative to plastic wrap! I use them for pretty much everything besides tofu (which I prefer to store in a reusable glass container to keep the moisture in!).
I have ALL sorts of reusable straws in our home from metal to glass – they are perfect for everyday use and super easy to clean as they normally come with their own brush and sometimes (depending on the straw!) I even pop mine in the dishwasher!
Zero-waste stores seem to be popping up everywhere lately and I’m LOVING it! We have one in Kelowna that just opened up called Footprints – an organic grocery store where the packaging is reusable, refillable, or compostable! They really have everything there from local eggs and produce to reusable straws, handmade soap, and much more! If you don’t have a zero-waste store in your area, the next best thing would be a bulk food store!
8. Glass Containers for Storage
Speaking of bulk food stores, one of my favourite places to get baking necessities and nuts in Kelowna is Bulk Barn! They allow you to bring in your own container and fill it up with their bulk foods! Since we were introduced to this, we now store all of the bulk items in our home in glass containers in our pantry! Not only does this help eliminate plastic but it also looks really pretty as well!
For those of you that are curious about finding out how our garbage is disposed of, be sure to check out our Trash Talk vlog below. Last year, Easton (our amazing Intern) took a trip to the local landfill to ask some questions; some of the answers may shock you! 🤭
What are some ways you’re incorporating Plastic Free July into your home? Make sure to share your ideas with us below!