If you are starting or planning to start out on your plastic free journey or zero waste living, here are some handy tips from the co-founders of Roots & Hoots, Shiv and Ram. We hope that this helps you in your journey
The key step in becoming eco-friendlier is being organised and this can make life so much easier. Best thing is when you get into the habit of always packing your cotton produce bags or filling up your water bottle to take with you to work, it just becomes second nature and you will start following it without thinking.
Reusable shopping bags – How many times have we ended up shopping when we didn’t expect to? If you ask me, the answer is lots . So, I always keep a reusable cotton /jute bags in the car to avoid using a plastic bag.
Keep a drink bottle with you – Using a refill water bottle we can save ourselves buying plastic bottles all the time. I use a stainless-steel water bottle to avoid any chemicals into my water and you can refill the bottle in lot of shops. You can even add your own flavours such as fresh mint and lime to make it tasty. Our range of refill bottles are here.
Keep reusable cutlery on you – I always carry my reusable cutlery with me, in case I need something to eat with as I really don’t want to be stuck with a plastic fork. Our range of reusable cutlery can be viewed here.
Buying fresh produce – Buy loose fruits & veggies where possible and ditch those single use plastics used by the super markets. If you can, shop locally, seasonally, organically and as fresh out of the ground as possible. This is just not good for the body but good for the planet as well. If you don’t feel like leaving the comfort of your home, you can order your fresh organic foods and vegetable here.
Make a packed lunch (if possible) – I know when we are in a rush, it’s difficult to pack your lunch, but making your own lunch, helps you decide what goes into your food and not only is this much healthier it will save on buying lunch packed in single use plastic.
Cook in batches – By cooking in batches you have time to get all your ingredients (plastic free if possible from a zero waste shop) and have your lunch / dinner ready. If you have food ready to go, you won’t panic last minute and end up buying packaged food. Want to buy the ingredients for your batch cooking, then we have a range of plastic free ingredients here.
Milk in refillable bottles - Refillable glass bottles are a brilliant way to cut down on plastic waste and if you want to try some plant based milk in refillable bottles, then you can try Minor Figures oat milk here.
Research for plastic-free alternative products for your essentials
A few years back, one of the most difficult parts about living plastic-free was finding replacements for all our daily essentials. But the good news is there are many options available now. Let’s look at some of the essential products below, which are far better for the environment.
Toothbrush – 200 Million plastic toothbrushes are thrown away every year in the UK which sit around for over 500 years before finally breaking down into micro plastics. A plastic free toothbrush is a better alternative which is made from FSC Beechwood and the bristles engineered out of bamboo charcoal fibre. Unlike most of the plastic free toothbrushes, you don’t have to snap the head off and the entire toothbrush is home compostable. You can shop a collection of plastic free tooth brushes here.
Toothpaste –300 million tubes of toothpaste are used in the UK, which if laid back to back will cover 75,000 kilometres. These tubes are usually made of different types of plastics, and many brands contain a metal layer inside the tube which isn't easy to separate for recycling purposes. An easy plastic free swap using only natural ingredients is far better for your mouth and for the environment. They don’t contain any fluoride, SLS or any other synthetic chemicals and comes in a glass jar with a metal lid. We even have a tooth gel in a refillable bottle which can be found in our collection of plastic free dentals can be found here.
Deodorants – In the UK every year 600 million aerosol deodorant cans and plastic roll-ons are consumed. While the cans are recyclable, (to be recycled they must be entirely empty, dry and clean,) the plastic roll-ons aren’t easily recycled. Moreover the compressed gases in aerosols have a harmful impact on CO2 emissions. There are some natural deodorants which are Aluminium free, plastic free and made with 100% natural ingredients that’s gentle to the skin . All of our natural plastic free deodorants can be found here.
Soap, shampoo and conditioner –Soaps, shampoos and conditioners usually come in plastic bottle or a plastic wrapper. They also tend to be made with harmful chemicals such as SLS and parabens. It is so easy to swap these chemicals soaps with a natural soap or haircare with 100% natural ingredients and completely plastic free. If you need a help to find some alternative then all of our natural vegan body and hair care products bars are listed here. You can buy the Faith in nature products in a refill bottle as well to cut down on any plastic waste.
Detergents – About 400 million plastic jugs of laundry detergents are thrown away in the UK. An easy alternative is a concentrated detergent strip which require less water, less cardboard for crating, and less gasoline for transportation. These detergents come in plastic free packaging and you simply rip off a strip, place it in your washing machine, add your clothes on top, and let the machine take care of the rest. Give it a try here.
Still looking lost and need a hand, have a look at some of the zero waste kits that we have put together in the link here.
And lastly, please remember that is a marathon and not a sprint run. You don’t need to do all of this at once . Just pick a couple of thing you want to try and see how it goes.