7 Easy Tips For Going ‘Zero Waste’
1. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle – in that order!
The 3 R’s are a commonly used slogan for those wishing to reduce their plastic usage, but they are written in that order for a reason. If you wish to make some lifestyle changes it’s all about changing habits first. Initially, reduce the amount of single-use plastic you buy and look at alternatives (more on that below). If you shop wisely and invest in ethical, sustainable items, you can use them over and over and reduce the number of items you buy. Reuse containers and bags you already have or pass on anything you no longer use. And finally, recycle only as a final option! Always check the packaging and remember recycling can also mean up-cycling and turning old things into new!
2. Swap bottles for bars.
Next time you run out of hand wash or shampoo, why not consider buying a bar instead of another bottle? There’s now a huge range of bars on the market suited to every hair and skin type and in many fragrances! There’s no plastic in sight, and you may even find they last longer, too
3. Keep it real. Stop using disposables, now!
There are so many options available to avoid single-use disposables – refillable water bottles and coffee mugs, insulated lunch boxes, metal or bamboo straws, bamboo cutlery, washable wipes, and more. The initial investment will pay off very quickly.
4. Refill where you can.
Keep hold of your empty cleaning bottles, take away containers and Tupperware and fill up on bulk goods at zero waste stores! This can often work out cheaper than buying the product again in the supermarket, and often the quality of goods is also better.
5. Shop local.
A lot of useless and wasteful packaging is used by supermarkets to sell everyday items such as fruit and vegetables, bread and cheese. Think about supporting your local businesses and reducing your waste at the same time! Head to the bakery, greengrocer or local deli and you can pick up these items loose or in brown bags!
6. Use what you have.
Sometimes people get very wrapped up in “going zero waste” and start buying every new product going that has an ethical label, without checking if they have the same thing at home already. There’s no need to go out and spend £50 on brand new glass jars to store your loose pasta beautifully! Inevitably there will be something you already have that will do the job just as well.
7. Buy preloved.
This doesn’t just mean shopping in charity shops (although they are great), but carefully thinking about what it is you want and searching the various second hand and preloved shops and websites out there for it. It’s possible to buy new items on these websites too, and means you get what you want for a bargain price!