Easy and cheap swaps to move your house towards being plastic-free
With the help of the great, the brilliant, the hero which is Sir David Attenborough, the ‘Attenborough effect’ has seen huge reductions in the use of plastic over recent years (hoorah!). However, there’s still a long way to go when it comes to fixing the plastic crisis and there’s a lot you can do around the house to move towards being plastic-free and saving the world, one turtle at a time. Swapping your plastic straw for a bamboo straw just simply isn’t enough (and we all know that the aesthetic benefit of slurping your cocktail from a tropical rainforest-esc product totally has a part to play).
As painful as it is to admit it, plastic comes in pretty handy around the house and ditching the cling film you wrap around your sandwich just to have it nestled between splurges of last week’s curry and your housemates 10-day old chicken is surely too great of a sacrifice.
You’re probably wondering just how in the heck you can avoid using plastic and you might think that going plastic-free all together is an impossible feat. It’s actually surprisingly plausible and the easiest way to be successful in the fight against plastic and make Attenborough proud is to look at alternatives which you can use around the house.
So, here are the easy ways of giving up plastic without having to also sacrifice your lunch:
1. Bee kind and swap cling film for beeswax wraps
No, this is not a joke and no, it is not as terrible as it sounds. Plastic resealable bags and cling film are two of the biggest culprits of plastic waste in the household and this quirky alternative is a fantastic solution. They’re vegan, reusable and have one up on plastic bags because you can mould them in your hand, meaning your food will most certainly be germ-free. Plus, as a reusable alternative, beeswax is ultimately a cheap swap to using endless supplies of freezer bags. And no, it will not leave you with the after-taste of honey or munching on a candle sandwich after use.
2. Shampoo-poo to plastic bottles
You’ve probably heard about ‘shampoo soap bars’ on the grapevine and yes it really is shampoo in a bar. Sounds bizarre, right? Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. This handy bar doubles up as a fantastic shower-time microphone so is not to be snuffed at. You can even get a beer shampoo bar which makes your hair incredibly silky because apparently, your hair loves beer too (warning: not to be consumed as a beverage). For those who simply aren’t a fan of the shampoo bar (if astonishingly, the microphone appeal isn’t enough for you), you can get shampoo which is bottled up in different materials, such as aluminium.
3. Your new plastic-free cosmetics will have you made up
It’s easy to forget how much plastic you’re using when it comes to your makeup routine but just because it’s small doesn’t mean that it should be kept around the house. Plastic seems to come in particularly handy when removing your makeup, but there’s a new plastic-free trend which you might not believe works until you actually try it. Reusable makeup removers are taking the world by storm because not only can you wash them TWO HUNDRED times and use them over and over again (thus saving on money AND plastic) but you can also use them to remove your makeup solely using water. Sounds impossible? See for yourself.
4. Feast your eyes on a plastic-free picnic
Next time you and your housemates head to the park in the summer heat, don’t be those people who leave behind heaps of wasteful plastic, for what is truly a pointless and short-lived one time use. Get your mitts on plastic-free, compostable cups for your beers and wooden cutlery for your picnic treats. It all tastes ten times better when you’re simultaneously saving the turtles.
Why is plastic bad?
If you’re still not sure whether it’s worth ditching the bad stuff and using alternatives, this is why plastic is SO bad:
- It almost NEVER breaks down: This means every bit of plastic you’ve ever seen, touched, or used will be on this planet for the rest of your lifetime and the more plastic there is, the more the earth will get clogged up with the indestructible material
- Microplastics are harmful to animals: When plastic breaks down, it turns into microplastics which is poisonous to animals and is now infecting the ocean, killing thousands of sea creatures every single day
- It’s also harmful to humans: Now when you eat fish, you are ingesting the very micro-beads of plastic which humans put in there in the first place – the (dark) circle of life
- They’re made using unsustainable products: Coal, crude oil and all the bad, non-renewable products are used to make another bad and often non-renewable product – lose, lose
So grab your housemates and give them all the details on how to make your house plastic-free and wonderfully green.