Our top 10 tips for Plastic Free July
Despite lockdown making the days blend into each other, we are entering into July (how did that happen?!) which means 2 things: summer is here and so is Plastic Free July. Plastic Free July is a global campaign which encourages people to refuse single-use plastics. This year, for the 10th anniversary of the event, over 250,000 people have signed up, meaning this is a huge opportunity to collectively bring positive environmental change. To help you reduce the single use plastic you use, I have put together my top 10 tips:
- Swap bottles of soap and shampoo for plastic-free bars. If you want to trial a shampoo bar, try a 2in1 shampoo and soap bar which will give you a chance to try a shampoo bar but you can always use as soap if it’s not for you.
- Try to shop locally and buy products with minimal packaging or recyclable cardboard packaging where possible. Shopping locally will also benefit the local community and reduce the carbon emissions which occur when transporting products over long distances.
- Take produce bags with you to the supermarket so that you can easily buy loose fruit and veg without having to use a plastic bag. If you are unable to find loose fruit and veg at the supermarket, try local grocery shops.
- Invest in beeswax wraps so that you don’t have to use clingfilm when storing food. www.beegreenwraps.co.uk offer a range of different patterns and beeswax wrap sizes and their high quality wraps can be washed and reused for up to a year! Plus, cutting down on single use plastic and stopping buying clingfilm could also save you money. As well as covering plates to store food overnight, beeswax wraps are also great for wrapping up sandwiches for a packed lunch or picnic in the sunshine.
- Try not to pick up heavily packaged lunches and snacks when on the go and instead make your own to take with you in a tupperware box, or wrapped in a beeswax wrap. Instead of picking up plastic cutlery bring bamboo cutlery which can be washed and reused and comes in a hessian pouch to keep your cutlery clean in your bag. Check out www.letsgoplasticfree.co.uk for more ideas.
- With restaurants reopening all over the UK, swap your plastic packaged takeaway for a meal out at a local restaurant - you are still able to have a little treat or date night but without the single use plastic packaging.
- Remember to take a reusable bottle with you when you leave the house so that you don’t have to buy a bottle of water. Embrace water from the tap - it’s free! Additionally, remember your reusable coffee cup, not only will you reduce the single use plastic you use but many coffee shops now offer a discount if you bring your own cup.
- When going for a walk at your local park or beach, pick up any litter you see, preventing the litter from further harming wildlife.
- Try growing your own herbs and some fruit and veg to reduce the supply chain. Particularly, if you struggle to find fruit and veg which are not packaged in single use plastic, try growing your own. For example: mint and thyme are easy to grow herbs. If you do not have a garden, why not try making a little herb garden indoors.
- Reuse the plastic bags and bottles that you have. Turn empty plastic tubs such as margarine pots into storage tubs. These tubs can be used to store leftovers in the fridge or freezer, also reducing food waste and saving you money by making your food go further.
About the author:
Maya is a recent graduate who has just founded SUSTAINER CONTAINER, a Scottish business selling affordable boxes of eco-friendly products. The business was founded with the aim of making sustainability more accessible by selling boxes of eco-friendly products for less than it costs to buy the products individually! Find out more about Maya’s Everything Eco Boxes, which contain everything you need to start your eco-warrior journey here.