I am in no means leading a Zero Waste lifestyle but in the last couple of years, I have tried to minimise waste in ways that do not require much effort and would not affect my lifestyle as much. After Bea Johnson’s talk on Zero Waste I did get motivated to do more than that but for now, I will share with you the 10 swaps that I had already implemented. They are super easy and won’t change your daily routine much! Do you think you can do them too?
1. Ditch the Makeup Cotton Pads
I was guilty of using multiple cotton pads a few times a day. Cotton pads require so many resources to produce, they are breaking the scale on pesticide levels, they are a regular expense and they create panic once you run out. I contacted Mr Kite Designs and she made lovely fabric ones for me with super cute designs. I just use them once and throw them in the wash. I have been using them for over half a year and I absolutely love them! You can make your own or you can also purchase them at Etsy. While Mr Kite Designs don’t have any ready made that they sell, I am sure if contacted they would be more than happy to make some for you in a fabric of your choice.
2. Toothbrush Swap
Since it is recommended that you change your toothbrush every 3 months, toothbrush after toothbrush ends up in the landfill. So why not instead of buying a plastic one next time, you get a compostable one? I have been using compostable toothbrushes for a year now and let me tell you they do the same job except they look so much better and I feel so much better towards using them. I am using Nordics ones at the moment, I love the colourful bristles.
3. Razor for Life
Ok, this is a swap I have not made yet as I seem to be taking my time choosing one as it is a lifetime investment more or less. Disposable razors don’t seem to last that long so you would use piles of them in a year. I am planning on replacing the disposable razors with a safety razor. A box of stainless steel blades will last quite a long time and can be recycled once dull. I have my eyes on a Rose Gold one :
4. Get a Moon Cup
This one concerns the girls only. Pads, tampons, you name it are extremely gross and annoying. I got a Mooncup 2 years ago and not I eliminated all this waste but found a swap that is much more efficient and comfortable. To be honest the environment put aside I would still use a Mooncup over anything else.
5. Carry Your Own Cup
Carrying your own coffee/tea cup and asking baristas to fill it up eliminates a lot of the ridiculous disposable cup waste. Many places even give you a discount if you bring your own cup. I have been using a bamboo cup that is not as exciting but I have had my eyes on the KeepCup available from the Little Green Shop.
6. Make Your Own Cleaning Products
For a minimalist, zero waste approach to cleaning you can refer to Ditch The Cleaning Products. There is nothing Dr. Bronner can’t deal with. and there are refill stations in most health shops.
7. Start Washing Your Clothes with Soap Nuts.
I used to wash my clothes with a reusable EcoEgg that a year ago mysteriously disappeared from the house which up to this day I can’t explain to myself. Now I use something cooler, Soap Nuts. I just put 5 nuts in a little pouch that EcoZone provides with its packets and throw it in the washing machine with the clothes. After 3-4 washes I compost the nuts and replace them. To make my clothes smell nice I put a few drops of essential oil of choice on the pouch that contains the soap nuts.
8. Disposable Straws Swapped for Stainless Steel
Straws are not entirely useless, they protect our teeth from sugary drinks. So instead of getting disposable ones you can always get stainless steel ones available from the Little Green Shop.
9. Collect the Poop in a Flushable Bag
When it comes to dogs poop and you live in the city you either pick it up or you pay a fine. There are better ways than using disposable plastic bags such as using newspapers but that is not very handy either. I found the perfect substitute, well my dad did actually: Flushable Poo bags by Dog Dunit. They are entirely biodegradable so you can either compost them or pop them in the toilet. They do come in a plastic bag but that is the best alternative I have found.
10. No Junk Mail Sticker.
Every morning when I woke up I had to go to the door collect all the useless brochures that appeared through the post slot, go outside in my pyjamas and throw them into the recycling bin. I got a ‘No Junk Mail’ sticker and a bit to my disbelief we haven’t had even 1 brochure through for over two months! They work!
Comment below if you can think of any other super easy changes