Here we are, at the start of a fresh new month, and what better to kick-off the month with than a new month-long challenge?
One of these challenges I have decided to take on this month is Plastic Free July, and I encourage you to take the challenge as well! Doing Plastic Free July is a great way to become more mindful of just how much plastic waste we create, and to try out some new tips and tricks for avoiding it as much as possible.
Sure, waste will always be a part of our modern life, but these days there are so many great reusable products out there that we can definitely make some easy changes to drastically reduce the amount of plastic waste we create.
I am going to be keeping a tally of how many plastic bags, coffee cups, or other plastic waste I have avoided by using my reusable items and reporting the result at the end of the month, so keep your eye out for that! This will hopefully help to inspire others by seeing just how much of the plastic packaging we encounter in daily life is actually avoidable all together- and importantly, how easy it is to avoid.
The more people that participate in initiatives like this, the less plastic that is going to end up in landfill, or polluting our oceans and harming wildlife- it all counts!
I don’t know about you, but I think plastic ending up in the ocean and starving and killing marine life is one of the most devastating effects our single-use plastic consumption is having on our planet. I am sure we have all seen those stories about dead whales turning up with stomachs full of plastic bags. So for anyone who is keen to take on the challenge, keep reading below for some of my tips!
Participating in Plastic Free July is all about trying to reduce your use of single-use plastic in any way you can. This can include any or all of the following, just to name a few;
- Taking a reusable cup when you grab a coffee
- Bringing reusable bags and produce bags when you go shopping
- Packing your lunch into reusable containers
- Making snacks in bulk at home- muesli bars, popcorn, etc.
- Avoiding using plastic bin liners, or lining bins with some newspaper
- Buying products from bulk stores where you can bring your own containers to fill up with staples such as flour, rice, seeds, nuts, etc.
- Bringing a reusable water bottle with you during the day
More tips can be found on the Plastic Free July website, and plenty of other plastic free sites!
These changes might seem like they’re going to be a bit of work, or cost you extra time, but after you’ve done it for long enough, it starts to become a habit. I know personally whenever I am about to go out shopping, I automatically think to bring reusable bags with me- I actually enjoy it! A lot of the time too, it’s much easier to carry things in these reusable bags anyway.
Below I have some photos of the reusable products that I like to use to avoid single-use plastic to give you some ideas of where to get started. And yes, initially these products will cost you money if you don’t have them already, but even if you just start with one- such as a reusable coffee cup, or grocery and produce bags- you can start to reduce your environmental impact without spending too much upfront. And then over time, you can build up your collection of reusable products as it suits you.
Of course, you can start to refuse single-use plastic without any of these products. For example, a lot of people will have reusable drink bottles at home, or backpacks or tote bags which can be used to carry items back when you’ve been shopping.
So have fun with it! Find some fun, creative ways to avoid single-use plastic, and you’ll feel all the better for it. I will also be sharing some plastic-free tips and tricks throughout the month for anyone interested in following the journey.