We all know that we should be cutting back on how much plastic we use every day. We are all becoming more aware of how our use of plastic is damaging the environment and to what extent we are basically killing the planet. I haven’t really been aware of it for too long but once I was, it was tricky to ignore!
I’m not into ‘saving the planet’ or becoming a vegetarian so don’t worry, you will not be lectured at by me! However, I do think there are some really easy things you can change in your everyday life to give our beautiful Earth a helping hand to recover.
Cut Down on Plastic Use
1. Reusable Wipes
If you’d have said to me a year ago that I would be giving up my love of cleaning wipes and baby wipes, I would have laughed in your face basically! I used wipes for literally everything and god knows how many we went through over the past 7 years. It wasn’t until I watched a documentary on the BBC about plastics that featured wipes in them, that I realised just how harmful they are. Not long after I decided to use up all of my cleaning wipes and buy cloth wipes for Lottie’s hands, face and nappy changes. I made the change over a few weeks and although sometimes I revert back to baby wipes for really bad nappies (thanks Lottie!) on the whole we don’t use them at all! They are so easy to use, clean better than baby wipes and get chucked in the washing machine once a week with a towel wash.
2. Reusable Sanitary Products
I have been using sanitary products for many years and would have never considered using anything else until I bought reusable wipes. Cloth pads sound like they would be quite hard to use and a bit yucky to handle but they really aren’t! I think it helps now I have had children, but it really doesn’t bother me at all anymore. From a cost point of view, it makes sense to use cloth pads as although the initial outlay is more, you save a fortune over your lifetime! Again, they are really easy to use and so comfortable! Just pop them in the wash once a week and they are like new. I also use cloth make up remover wipes and they are so lovely and soft on my face. I don’t have to worry about harsh chemicals on my skin either which is amazing!
3. Eco-Friendly Cleaning
Pretty much every single cleaning product comes in a plastic bottle. A lot of the plastic can be recycled but very often the trigger spray top can’t be recycled at all. A number of brands have now gone down the refillable route which is amazing and means that plastic use is cut down a lot but we can go further than this.
Squeeky Cleaners have produced a fab range of household cleaning sprays that are not only eco-friendly but organic and 100% natural too! The bottles are aluminium and can be refilled using aluminium bottles of concentrate. We love the multi-purpose cleaner for removing germs and bacteria from our kitchen surfaces.
4. Plastic Bottles
We go through a hell of a lot of water in a day. It’s pretty much all we drink which is fab but that can mean a lot of plastic bottles. Now you can’t really reuse plastic water bottles more than a couple of times, so we have bought around 8 reusable water bottles which are washed every night and refilled with filter water each day. I also bought us 2 Brita ‘fill and go’ bottles which have inbuilt filters in them. When we go out for the day, we try and take these with us, so we aren’t buying plastic water bottles all the time.
This can massively cut down on plastic use.
5. Plastic Packaging
This is a tricky one! We shop at Tesco and pretty much everything comes wrapped in plastic packaging. It feels like companies are making it really difficult to buy products without the plastic and to buy things like peppers, oranges, and apples individually can work out so much more expensive! I have tried going to our local grocery shop, but it is more expensive and sometimes we can’t afford the extra! I do know that supermarkets are aiming to get better with this but where you can, try and avoid plastic outer packaging.
If you need help with where to recycle some items in the UK as some plastics can be recycled at supermarkets, Emma Reed has some great tips for you!
A really simple thing to change is the use of plastic carrier bags. I invested in some Trolley Bags a couple of years ago and I would highly recommend them! I leave them in the boot and then every time I go shopping, they are there when I need them. The other thing you could do is buy some tote bags, there are so many available to buy. Just make sure you keep some in your handbag/changing bag and your car boot, so you don’t forget them! Head over to Rinexii for a really interesting study into how long reusable bags actually last!
If you’re interested in reducing your household’s carbon footprint, Live the Easy Life has some great tips on how to do just that!
What kinds of things have you done to cut down on plastic use?