Ok so I will admit to not being very good at this. I forget my reusable bags when I go shopping. I buy bottles of water (sorry!) and I like my shampoo that comes in a bottle. But and it’s a big but. I’m becoming more and more uncomfortable with our plastic use as a family. We do recycle as much as we can but is it enough? If we all did a little more it’s got to help, right? So I’ve been thinking and researching for simple ways we can start reducing plastic as a family, whilst the supermarkets and the general World catch up.
Easy ways for reducing plastic as a family
Buy loose fruit and veg. Even better, walk to a local farm shop and support local too. When I do online shopping, sometimes my loose fruit and veg will arrive in a paper bag, yes Tesco! However switching to Asda recently it now comes in plastic bags, (bangs head on table). I don’t always have the time to go and do the shopping by hand, so I’m not really sure what the solution is here. I select no carrier bags already?
Go to a bakery for your bread and then store it in a bread tin, or bake your own. This is something I need to get better at. We always buy pre sliced loaves for convenience.
Look at your toothbrush buying habits. I don’t know if I’m willing to give up my electric toothbrush for a wooden one though, sorry! However it’s got to be better having one that needs a head replacing every now and then, to throwing away a whole toothbrush.
Look at ordering local milk in glass bottles. Whilst looking for a local milk delivery, so that we can get our milk in glass bottles rather than plastic. I found a local farm that you can go and buy from, but they sell their milk in, you guessed it, plastic bottles. So frustrating!
Buy wooden toys. I actually prefer wooden toys and Ava has a lot of wooden toys, including big items like her play kitchen.
Buy Reusable water bottles. Even better are the metal ones that keep your water cold. I think as more cafes and shops get used to this and offer water to fill up with this will get easier to do. And it saves money too.
Get rid of the clingfilm. I’ve just purchased some Beeswax wraps, so I’m interested to see how we get on with them.
Get a reusable coffee cup. With many coffee places now providing the incentive of cheaper coffees when using a reusable cup it’s a great idea.
Buy better Tampons. I buy organic cotton tampons which are better for you and the environment. They also come with a cardboard applicator and are wrapped in paper, in a cardboard box. Or look at trying a period cup.
Buy metal razors. Swap to longer lasting razor bodies, or invest in a rechargable one, over buying disposables.
Use matches instead of a lighter. Simple yet effective and an easy change to make.
Pick boxed detergents and food instead of bottles. When you are shopping opt for boxes of washing detergent and boxes of pasta and rice rather than the ones in plastic. I’ve been making this easy change recently.
Change your skin care. With so many new eco, organic brands starting up there are many options now for buying glass or even bamboo packaged products.
Stop using plastic straws and cutlery. I saw something the other day saying ‘It’s only one straw, said 3 million people” And it’s so true. You can buy reusable straws and reusable cutlery that you can take with you. Every little helps.
Look at your teabags. Did you know that most teabags aren’t biodegradable? Places like Coop now sell biodegradable tea bags.
Don’t use coffee pods. We recently changed to a coffee machine that uses espresso coffee rather than pods and not only is the coffee better, but it cuts out lots of plastic. We also get our coffee from here, which comes in paper bags.
If your child is in nappies, switch to reusable. You can save pounds by doing this and help the environment at the same time.
I would love to know if you have any more simple ways for reducing plastic use as a family.