It’s no secret that our less than sustainable choices affect our health and the planet. We are producing over 300 million tons of plastic every year, 50% of which is for single-use purposes.
But innovative, reusable plastic-free products can now replace many of the not so eco-friendly items we use in our daily routines. There are plenty of easy, affordable swaps you can make to help you reduce waste and live more sustainably. From razors and cotton pads to coffee cups and reusable plastic wrap, the items on this list are accessible, environmentally responsible and easy swaps to make.
Beeswax Food Wrap
There’s no need for plastic wrap or foil when you swap them out for reusable beeswax wrap. Use them to save leftovers, fruit halves or anything else All you need is the warmth of your hand to mold these wonders. Simply wash with cool water and mild soap and reuse.
Swap out all your plastic sandwich bags and food containers for reusable ones. There are many plastic-free options available on the market that you can really find one that fits your needs like silicone snack bags, glass food containers and metal bento boxes.
Opt for a reusable canvas tote bag when you go grocery shopping. Bringing your own bags from home ensures that you don’t have to use plastic bags to carry your items home. Keep a few in an entryway closet, hanging on a door handle or in the trunk of your car door so you can remember to scoop one out on your way to the market.
Like toilet paper and other single-use items, paper towels are a waste of resources and a danger to the planet. A great alternative to paper towels are cotton and microfiber towels. These can be washed and reused to clean surfaces around the house and can even replace your napkins at the dinner table.
Reusable Coffee Cups
Given the fact that plastic coffee lids go straight to a landfill and paper cups can’t be recycled once they’re dirty, a reusable mug is the way to go. There are tons of options to choose from: silicone, stainless steel and even glass. Best of all, many coffee shops give you a small discount when you bring your own mug.
Vacuum Insulated Water Bottles
Americans buy about 29 million bottles a year and it’s very costly to buy daily. Did you know that a family of four can save $123,000 from using reusable water bottles after five years? Switching to a reusable, refillable water bottle can save you money and keep your drinks hot or cold for hours on end.
People in the United States use millions of single-use plastic straws every day. And like other single-use plastic items, they wind up in our waterways and ultimately the oceans. Forego harming the natural environment and invest in a reusable stainless steel, glass or bamboo straw.
Bamboo toothbrushes are the perfect alternative to classic plastic toothbrushes that continually litter our landfills and oceans. They are biodegradable and an easy swap to make. You can even repurpose the toothbrushes to clean dirty shoes or the small crevices around your sink faucet.
Washable Cotton Rounds
Removing your makeup and washing your face at the end of the day can be a tiresome task. You might as well elevate the experience (while helping the environment) by upgrading your everyday cotton balls and face wipes to reusable cotton rounds. It’s gentle on your skin and better for the planet.
Did you know sustainable shaving was a thing? Safety razors shave like a dream and produce zero waste. All you need to replace is the blade and recycling them comes easy when you collect them in a little jar. Your wallet will also thank you for not buying disposable razors.
As you can see, being eco-friendly doesn’t have to be expensive or difficult. It just takes a little bit of a lifestyle change and breaking old habits.