My Current Low Waste Journey
If I’m being honest with you I didn’t know Plastic Free July was a thing until July 1st. And then I saw all these other bloggers posting on instagram about their low waste journeys and I thought ‘oh yeah, I should post something on the blog about my personal zero waste journey.’ But I never got around to it because, honestly, I don’t live a super eco-friendly life when it comes to waste.
But this Plastic Free July (or what’s left of it) I want to focus on getting rid of the top ten items found on beaches. These items, in order of abundance, are: cigarettes, caps and lids from bottles, plastic bottles, plastic bags, food wrappers/containers, plastic utensils/paper plates, glass bottles, straws, beverage cans, paper bags.
For the purposes of Plastic Free July, I am going to focus on the plastic items on this list. Up first...
Four items on this list are either beverage bottles/cans or come from a bottle (caps). This seems a little ridiculous to me, but at the same time it’s kinda promising. I mean, you can eliminate four of the top ten beach pollutants by simply buying a reusable water bottle. I own three different sizes of water bottles so I always have something to fit what I need that day. I have a huge 40oz bottle for long days, a normal sized Manna bottle, which I usually use for short outings or work outs, and a small 12oz hydro flask that I use for juice, tea, and coffee. This way I can also bring more than one with me if I ever want another type of drink! I’ve found that having more than one bottle is super helpful and I would definitely recommend. (Also if you don’t own a reusable water bottle yet, what are you doing? Just get out there and finally buy one!)
Ah yes, the ever so lovely plastic bag...I am so so awful when it comes to grocery bags. I’m usually pretty okay at remembering my reusable bags when I know I am going to the store, but sometimes I’ll make impromptu trips on my way home from work and I never have a reusable bag in my car. The solution? I am going to buy more reusable bags (probably totes because yay for multi-functional bags) and I am going to force myself to always keep one or two in my car. This is just a matter of actually buying the bags and creating a habit. It will take time but eventually I know I’ll get better!
So there’s three separate things I would suggest buying to reduce your plastic waste from food containers. The first is the always wonderful mason jar. I love these so much because you can put virtually anything in them - liquids, powders, pasta, meatballs, whatever you want! And they look pretty dang nice lined up in your fridge! The second item is tupperware. I have these super nice ones that collapse! I use these mainly just for grabbing food on the go. (And sometimes I even get free salads from the salad bar at my school because they want to encourage reusable containers)!
And finally the last solution, wax wraps! I’m honestly so stoked to share these with you guys! I have been reluctant to buy wax wraps because I did not want to buy ones made from bees wax, but then I found Earthology Food Wraps and wow, am I in love. They still offer beeswax food wraps if you’re into that BUT they also offer the first ever vegan food wrap in North America! And guys, these are seriously so nice. You can store anything that will fit in these little wraps. They’re a perfect alternative to plastic wrap or ziplock bags and I would seriously recommend buying some. Not convinced? Perhaps a discount would sway you. Earthology is offering an exclusive discount to my readers so there’s no better time than right now to make this switch! Use the code THEDOT at checkout for 15% off your purchase!
Plastic Utensils and Straws
Quick side note to say I am doing pretty well when it comes to plastic bottles, plastic food wraps, and plastic utensils.
But, where I need major help: straws, straws, and more straws.
I know. I’m THE worst. Straws should really never be a necessity, but it’s hard to break habits. I’m getting better though, I am avoiding straws in most drinks and I am getting better at asking for no straws in restaurants before it’s too late. My biggest weakness is smoothies. Those things are hard to drink without straws, especially when you’re out and about. But honestly here’s the thing, I really shouldn't keep making excuses. And I know I’m not alone. We really just need to suck it up (no pun intended) and buy some dang straws.
But lucky for you (and me) I have probably the best solution ever: bamboo straws from Bamboo Straw Girl that come at a discounted price. Made from 100% bamboo, won’t feel weird on your teeth (like some metal straws), AND no more guilt from using plastic straws. So who’s with me? Are you ready to take the next step and buy some straws? Use the code THEDOTBLOG at checkout to get 10% off your order! They also offer bamboo utensils which I would definitely recommend investing in if you don’t have reusable utensils yet!
So I just threw a lot of information at you, but what if you just change one part of your life after reading this? Maybe you need the most improvement when it comes to straws? Or maybe you create a ton of waste by eating on the go so it’s time to buy some reusable food wraps/containers and some utensils. I want to challenge you to at least buy one thing this month that will help you decrease your plastic consumption.
And if you decide to make this step (no matter how big or small) please let me know! I want to send you a sticker to congratulate you and remind you to always try to reduce your plastic use! Leave a comment below or send me a message on instagram to get your sticker!
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I'd love to hear about all the new changes in your life!