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Embracing Plastic-Free July: 10 Easy Ways to Reduce Your Plastic Waste

Embracing Plastic-Free July: 10 Easy Ways to Reduce Your Plastic Waste

Here we are in Plastic-Free July! What started as a global movement aimed at reducing plastic use, and promoting sustainability, is also an ideal time to reflect on our own consumption habits and embrace eco alternatives. We all know that plastic pollution poses a significant threat to our environment – insidiously creeping into our oceans and wildlife habitats. So, here are some practical tips to help you reduce your plastic footprint and do your little part to contribute to a healthier planet…

Switch to Reusable Shopping Bags

Invest in sturdy reusable bags for grocery shopping and errands. Keep them handy in your car or by the door to avoid forgetting them and resorting to more store-bought short-term bag options. Opt for tote bags made from natural fibres like canvas bags or jute bags, which will ultimately biodegrade at the end of their useful life.

Editor’s picks:

Say No to Single-Use Plastics

Refuse single-use plastics such as straws, cutlery, and water bottles whenever possible. Instead, carry a reusable water bottle and metal or bamboo utensils with you. Many establishments now offer eco-friendly alternatives - you just need to get used to asking!

Editor’s pick: Frank Green Reusable bottles because they’re not only practical but super stylish. And investing in a reusable bottle that you love love love will hopefully up your water intake as well as preventing the purchase of drinks in plastic bottles.

Choose Glass or Metal Containers

When storing food or beverages, opt for glass jars or metal containers instead of plastic ones. They are durable, easier to clean, and can be reused indefinitely without leaching harmful chemicals.

Editor’s tip: Check out the range at your local Kmart. You don’t have to splurge to find good reusable containers. Or, if you’re not fussed about getting matching sets, go one better and see what your local thrift store has to offer!

Explore Plastic-Free Hygiene Products

Swap out plastic toothbrushes for bamboo ones and consider switching to shampoo and soap bars instead of bottled products. These alternatives often come in minimal or compostable packaging, reducing waste significantly.

Editor’s pick: Oi organic feminine hygiene products. These tampons have been designed in Aotearoa with the health of our people and our environment front of mind.

Shop in Bulk

Buying in bulk reduces packaging waste. Bring your own containers or bags to refill items like grains, pasta, and spices at stores that offer bulk options. This not only cuts down on plastic but also saves money in the long run.

Editor’s tip: Ecopack Zero Waste Refillery Set because having a set of conveniently sized organic cotton drawstring bags will make wholefoods shopping a whole lot easier!

Support Local Farmers and Markets

Choose locally grown produce whenever possible to reduce the carbon footprint associated with transportation and packaging. Farmers' markets often offer fresh fruits and vegetables without the plastic wrapping found in supermarkets.

Editor’s tip: Ecobags Fairtrade & Organic Cotton String Bag with Long Handle is your essential farmers market companion!

DIY Cleaning and Personal Care Products

Make your own cleaning products using simple ingredients like vinegar, baking soda, and essential oils. For personal care items, DIY options or products packaged in recyclable materials are preferable to plastic-packaged alternatives.

Editor’s pick: Ecopack Multi-Purpose Bamboo Cleaning Cloths are not only super soft and super absorbent, but they’re reusuable too. A much better option that microplastic-leeching synthetic cloths for applying your homemade cleaning potion.

Educate and Advocate

Spread awareness about the importance of reducing plastic use among friends, family, and your community. Encourage others to join you in making small changes that collectively make a big impact on our environment.

Editor’s tip: Head along to the Go Green Expo next time it comes to a town near you to keep abreast of all the great eco-conscious products and advice that’s available.

Properly Recycle and Dispose

Learn about your local recycling programs and follow their guidelines to ensure that items are properly sorted and recycled. Dispose of any remaining plastic waste responsibly to prevent it from ending up in landfills or oceans.

Editor’s tip: Every Council is slightly different (for the moment but lots of effort is being put into national waste alignment) so jump onto your local Council’s website to double check what waste can go in what bin and where it’s destined for.

Stay Informed and Inspired

Stay updated on advancements in sustainable living and seek inspiration from others committed to reducing plastic waste. Follow blogs, social media accounts, and organisations dedicated to environmental conservation for ongoing tips and motivation.

Editor’s tip: Follow us on Facebook and/or Instagram where we do our best to share eco inspo and latest information about packaging materials.

By adopting simple yet effective practices like these, you can do your part in preserving our planet for future generations. Alone we can make a ripple that, together, turns into a powerful swell. Let's make this Plastic-Free July a stepping stone towards a more sustainable lifestyle. Together we can make a difference!

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