As plastic free July comes to an end I thought I'd share a few of my favourite plastic free swaps. These are swaps and changes I've made in my own journey to live a more sustainable zero waste and yes plastic free life. Its not easy to change everything and it takes time to use stuff up and replace with more environmentally conscious products and plastic free July aims to help draw attention and raise awareness of some of the simple swaps we can all make it to help save the planet and resolve the plastic pollution crisis. There is heaps of info out there on alternatives to a lot of the essentials we all need that often come in single use plastic so I'm going to keep it short and sweet and have whittled it down to 4 things I love and would recommend as I believe them to be so much better than their plastic counterparts. If you haven't already I would recommend swapping these things in next time
To mark the end of plastic free July and that I've finally started a blog I'm also offering a 20% discount with code PFJuly for the next week and a free soap saver bag for all orders over £20- so theres never been a better time to make some sustainable swaps
1. SAfety razor
The essential in plastic free shaving- the safety razor not only looks cool and kind of old fashioned but is a truly great swap. It gives a super clean shave and the only waste with these razors is the metal blade. I bought a metal safety razor about 4 years ago that I like but I now stock safety razors with wooden handles (which I think are actually much nicer). Once you've invested in your safety razor- it will last you a lifetime with some care. And added bonus the blades are super cheap so will save you lots in the long term. The blades generally come in a small amount of cardboard and paper that can recycled and the metal blades should be disposed of in a sharps bin when they've become blunt and no good. You do need to take a little care with these razors as they are sharp but the amount of shaving waste you will save is worth that extra bit of care and they look cool.
2. sisal soap saver bag (and Soap)
The soap saver and soap are a game changer in my showering routine and I love them. It is basically a small pouch that you pop your soap in and hang in the shower like one of those pesky plastic bottles with the hooks. The pouch and soap become a self soaping exfoliating little pouch so not only can go do away with single use shower gel bottles but also with those silly body puff things. Its a great body exfoliator so you can give yourself a good scrub and get that skin all lovely and soft. As the drawstring on the pouch allows you to hang the soap it can dry out ensuring your soap lasts a long time by not sitting in a little puddle of water and becoming soapy mush. They are also made from completely natural fibre Sisal so when they do eventually need replacing you can home compost them. Just an FYI soap and especially handmade natural soaps contain glycerine that will attract water- you need to let your soap dry between uses to extend its life so you can get the most amount of use from it. If your not sold on soap bags then a decent soap rack that allows air to get underneath the bar will help prolong its life and keep your bar hard and useful for a longer time. The other great thing about these bags is you can stuff all the little ends of soap bars in them and at a teeny £3 I would definitely recommend trying one out.
3. mouthwash tabs (from georganics)
I'm a big fan of Georganics and stock a good range of their natural Toothpastes and powders as well as the mouthwash tabs. You can find all of these in the Dental section of my shop. I love the mouthwash tabs because they are just so much nicer and more refreshing than the harsh big brands. I have a little cup that I pop a tab in so when I'm brushing, it fizzes away already for me to swish my mouth out with at the end. I have quite sensitive teeth and also suffer with bruxism so am protective of my teeth but have found using the mouthwash tabs to help keep me smiling. I know from chatting to lots of people at markets that toothpaste tastes and requirements vary greatly but if you are interested in trying out a natural toothpaste then Georganics are the experts in this area. Personally I prefer the Toothpowders (particularly the charcoal) and find it be slightly more abrasive and fizzy to give a deep clean which is great for my tastes.
4. Kitchen- Compostable sponges and brushes
This one is a bit of a no brainer- plastic sponges or compostable sponges? Well guess I'm just here to say that compostable sponges are great and work every bit as good as the ones you generally find in the supermarket. Compostable sponges can be made from a range of natural materials from wood pulp to sisal and coconut husks- and I would get a range so you can combat all your dirty dishes. The sponges are great but for things that need a bit more a scrub I have a wood sisal pot brush and a bamboo scaper. I was a bit skeptical that the bamboo scraper would work but its actually amazing and gets everything off with very little effort- washing up Joy :)
Seal doesn't stock much kitchen stuff apart from Bamboo Straws but my market mate who runs eco earth market has a great range on his site alongside heaps of other sustainable home essentials. Check it out- ecoearthmarket.com/collections/kitchen and swap those horrible plastic sponges out for some much nicer natural alternatives.
So thats it- my 4 of my favourite swaps and recommendations. There are heaps of other swaps to make from reusable cups and cutlery, shopping bags, solid shampoos or switching to loose tea and shopping locally at farmers markets and your local refill store. Really the list never ends as more and options come on the market and more companies adapt to keep up with consumer demand for sustainability. I guess its just remembering to try and do what we can and make better choices when we can. By making that extra effort to choose products that are kinder to the planet and that you can take pride in owning- it will make a huge difference in time. Together we can make change happen and get rid of single use plastics
Peace and Love
Soap maker and DIY enthusiast- sharing some easy home makes.