Single use plastics have their place (for instance, in medical applications!), but when more functional, easier-to-use and/or more affordable reusable options exist, why stick with single use? This year, resolve to trade out these single use plastic products for their reusable, sustainable alternatives.
Liquid hand soap bottles and pumps
For the record, these don’t need to be single use — if you already have some on hand, we recommend repurposing or reusing the bottles, at least, if not the pumps. But when faced with the choice of which type of hand soap to buy, choose unpackaged bar soap for the greatest waste reduction. There’s no reason for us to keep creating bottles for liquid soap out of petroleum products when bar soap has suited us just fine for so long. Bonus: bar soaps tend to have a much shorter and simpler ingredient list, while liquid hand soaps often include petroleum-based ingredients.
NOTE: Currently, our bar soaps come with a paper label when ordered online, so that you can see the ingredients. However, our soaps are available unpackaged in the store, and if you make a note on your online order, we would be happy to ship your soap without the paper label.
Not only do they harbour bacteria, sponges need to be thrown out after a while. Cellulose sponges actually break down fairly well, as they are made from wood pulp, but microfibre and polyurethane sponges won’t break down once thrown out. Replace both sponges and paper towels with a reusable and biodegradable, cotton- and cellulose-based product like the SKOY cloth. These super-thirsty cleaning tools break down in just five weeks when properly composted in a home composter!
There are so many amazing alternatives to disposable snack bags now, why would you NOT use a cloth option like the ones from Colibri, or a silicone version from Stasher? Easy to clean, durable and oh-so-cute, your new reusable snack bags might even make your lunchtime a little brighter.
They may seem like they’re made of cloth or paper, but dryer sheets are made of polyester, which is, of course, a plastic. Therefore, these guys will not break down in the landfill or the compost. Make the switch to dryer balls (like these wool ones from ULAT) and do away with dryer sheets completely!
For more zero-waste living inspiration and to cut even more single-use plastic and disposable items from your life, check out our Zero Waste Home section, where you will find reusable straws, all sorts of nifty lids to turn your mason jars into all sorts of things, handy products for transporting & storing food, ideas for waste-free hygiene and more!