In improving the wellbeing of planet earth, it is almost inevitable to collaborate as one unified group. After all, it is impossible to change the world and solve the issue of excessive waste creation and littering as a sole individual.
Therefore, reducing waste production is a battle to be fought together. On an individual level, then, you can join the waste-warriors by making various conscious choices in your daily habits. For instance, as is central in the Wastetime discourse, you can pick up litter in your environment and with that make the world a little cleaner.
Of course, it would be even better to attack the litter-issue at its root. After all, the production of plastic is a process that either requires new (or virgin) oil or plastic granules which is a product resulting from the recycling of existing plastic. Unfortunately, due to Covid the demand for oil has decreased so much that recycling and thus the re-using of plastic is not enticing for producers as fossil oil is considerably cheaper.
Zero – waste shopping
One of the most accessible ways to influence the production of virgin plastic is to incorporate consciousness of sustainability when you do your shopping. Consequentially, this reduces your personal use of plastic. This type of shopping means that you opt to purchase plastic-free or zero waste products for your everyday needs. In this way, there is either no waste at all or the packaging is re-used multiple times.
Over the past years various initiatives and companies have sprouted, each with different products and services to help you improve your waste-free habits. Such businesses range from personal care products to zero-waste grocery shopping, so there are various options for your individual needs.
Even though it may seem daunting to change your lifestyle and exchange your favourite pre-packaged products for something new and unknown, it is in fact easy as 1-2-3!
Limited waste products
where to get them
As there are many sustainable initiatives worldwide it is impossible to name them all. Therefore, the specific brands for the products and services that are about to be mentioned are based in the Dutch market. Nonetheless, this list functions as an act of inspiration for you to go ahead and browse the internet to find similar products within your vicinity. You can find them on the end of this page.
Plastic free personal care
Products of personal care are often packaged in plastic bottles, tubes, and other containers. The bathroom is therefore one of the places in your home where it is easy to exchange these products for packaging-free versions.
Examples of products you could try out are shampoo- and conditioner bars. These bars are available from various brands, such as HappySoaps and NatureBox, and are solid pieces of soap which produce foam when mixed with water. Then you simply rub them in your hair and rinse the foam out for fresh and clean locks. On average, one of these bars is the equivalent of 3 plastic bottles of shampoo or conditioner!
Additionally, such bars are available for the body. Whilst you can use a regular piece of soap, body bars are developed to nourish and moisturize the skin more deeply. As with the shampoo bars, these also equate 3 plastic bottles on average.
Other plastic free personal care products that are worth a try are for example the cardboard-packaged deodorants of The Lekker Company, Ben & Anna’s toothpaste that is presented in a glass jar, and the various luscious soaps from Lush.
Fantastic initiatives for food
Another wasteful area in the house is the kitchen. It is not for nothing that the largest amount of litter found on the streets is the packaging of food. Luckily, there are companies that attempt to challenge this waste by providing a shopping experience for which the packaging is re-used.
One such initiatives is Pieter Pot. Customers of Pieter Pot can place their groceries order in the web shop and will receive their delicious goodies, ranging from cookies to rice, in re-usable glass jars. Once the products are finished the delivery person, when delivering the next order, will take the jars back to the central hub where they are cleaned and refilled for the next customer.
When you prefer going for a physical visit to a grocery store, it is worth it to go to Waar. In this shop you can take your own containers and fill them with various delicious products so that no new packaging has to be used. Waar is also known for their variety of sustainable products and presents.
Catches for cleaning
As a third category it is relevant to mention cleaning and the kitchen. This as most cleaning products are presented to the customer in plastic bottles which are difficult to re-use for other purposes.
Brands like Sophie Green are here to help you out. With the products of their ‘one-bottle-philosophie’ you only need one plastic bottle which you can refill over and over again with small sachets of powder and good old tap water. They also have a plastic free container of concentrated powder with which you can make 25 buckets of soapy water, usable for all cleaning jobs around the house.
There are also innovative initiatives for the washing of your clothes. Seepje, for instance, has a collection of ‘superpeels’ which are natural Sapindus Mukorossi peels which you add to your laundry and naturally release soap when in contact with water. Besides being plastic free, this product is also 100% natural.
Things for thought
By choosing for such sustainable products as described in this blog, on your own terms and within your own budget, you can easily make an environmental impact that does not require much effort.
If more individuals choose for such beautiful products, we can once again work together and make the market greener. If this is not a win-win situation, then what is?