Our casual plastic use is causing far more damage to marine
life then it’s worth. But thanks to greater awareness and concern about the
environment, we have seen some steady changes in relation to plastic use: the
plastic bag fee which came into effect in October 2015 for example, and the
forecasted ban of plastic straws next year. There are big changes in motion,
but it is the small lifestyle changes that we can all make that will make a
Leading a more plastic free life is one of the best and
easiest methods of self-improvement you could opt for this year. Forget your
optimistic gym membership and your severe diet plan, dropping plastic is an
achievable and massively rewarding new year’s resolution that we should all
try. Here are some small changes that will help you achieve this goal:
clear of plastic bags and straws
Luckily, these items are becoming less commonplace in the UK today.
However, it can still be difficult to avoid them at times. When you pick up a
takeaway for example, don’t be afraid to say no to the excess plastic bags your
food is wrapped in.
- Make the
switch to a reusable coffee cup and water bottle
Takeaway coffee cups are a major source of waste material and plastic
bottles take a shocking 450
years to decompose. With this in mind, it is more pressing than ever to
make the switch to reusable items. KeepCups
and Chilly’s Bottles are
popular brands that focus on sustainable products.
unpackaged fruit and veg
Many supermarkets are now making switch to packaging free products. If
you have the option, choose to load up brown paper bags with fruit and
vegetables rather than choosing pre-package food.
- Get your
hands on a bamboo toothbrush
Plastic toothbrushes take 400 years to decompose, and if you consider how
many you go through in a lifetime, the life span of them all is shocking. A
bamboo toothbrush on the other hand, only takes five to ten years — minimal in
- Find a
refill station for your laundry detergent and washing up liquid
Instead of chucking out the plastic bottle when your washing up liquid
runs out, hold on to it and get it refilled! Lots of sustainable shops now
offer this service, making it easier than ever to opt for refills rather than wasting
- Switch to
soap and shampoo bars rather than bottles
Shampoo and hand soap always seem to come with excess plastic packaging.
There is simply no need to coat these items in plastic, as they work perfectly
well in bar form. This is another tiny switch that will make little difference
to your daily routine but really help out the environment.
- Shop at
‘zero waste’ shops
Thankfully, zero waste shops are becoming far more common in the UK. The
idea of zero waste shops is that they sell produce with absolutely no plastic
packaging. Switching up your shopping routine and choosing a zero-waste shop
would be a great habit to get into in 2020. You can find a list of zero waste
shops and where to find them here.
- Switch to beeswax
wrap rather than clingfilm
Sustainable food storage is another factor that people often forget to
consider. We throw away single use clingfilm without a second thought, because
it seems like such a necessity within our lives. Now however, there are plenty
of alternatives to use if you want to go plastic free. Beeswrap, for example, is
a ‘natural alternative to plastic wrap’ which can be used time and time again.
- Up your
sustainable Tupperware game
Along the same theme, consider switching to sustainable Tupperware. There
are plenty of alternatives to wasteful plastic Tupperware, such as bamboo,
glass, or stainless-steel alternatives. Oxfam
do a great range!
- Cut down on shopping and spending
last one is essential, although perhaps not as easy as the other lifestyle
changes. Every time you buy something, especially online, it is likely to come
swaddled in needless layers of plastic. If you cut down on this spending, you
a real environmental change.
These changes will be easy to get used to once you’ve made
an active effort to change your routine. They will soon become second nature!
If everyone chips in and makes an effort towards sustainability, we will see a
reduced amount of plastic pollution our oceans. Article brought to by Where The Trade Buys, a UK
company and provider of pull up
with bases in London, Sunderland and Surrey.