It’s almost impossible to imagine life without plastic. Almost everything around us – pens, home decorations, medicine and food packaging, many of the things we use daily – are made of plastic. But while it may be hard to live life entirely without the many plastic items we depend on, there are ways you can limit your plastic footprint by adopting some simple plastic-free practices at home. The following are some tips on how you can reduce plastic use at home.
- Use non-plastic containers. Carry a reusable glass or aluminium water bottle and refill it with water instead of buying bottled water from the store. Use non-plastic materials to wrap your food such as beeswax wraps. There are many great options like using a cloth sandwich bags, wooden Bento boxes, lightweight stainless steel food storage boxes, or meal baskets.
- Do not buy frozen food. More than 50 percent of the US population buy frozen food to save time cooking. However, convenience foods are actually one of the sources of excessive packaging waste as they are always wrapped in plastics. If you’re serious about ditching plastic, try to shop at your local farmer’s market for fresh meat and poultry. Then you can store them in your fridge using reusable food storage.
- Carry your own coffee canister. Stop getting take out coffee from your favorite coffee shop or drive-thru. Prepare your own coffee and put it in a canister and take it with you. Today, there are even self-stirring mugs on the market that stir coffee for you as you go. Such canisters and sealable coffee mugs can definitely save time, money, and lessen single-use plastics.
- Stop using plastic straws. Yes, we all love using straws. Kids also prefer them, especially when they’re sipping their favorite soda or orange juice. But if you really care about the earth, ditch plastic straws and replace them with stainless straws. Pop them in every handbag, food bag or picnic hamper you own, including your children’s school backpack. Make it a rule for everyone in your family to use stainless straws instead of single-use plastic straws.
- Repurpose your old plastic containers. Do not throw any plastic containers that grocery bought and takeaway foods and drinks come in. There are many ways you can reuse them. For example, you can make a plastic vase out of a Coca-cola bottle. Turn other plastic containers into storage for your sugar, milk, or cocoa powder. Repurpose unwanted plastic items instead of buying new ones.
- Carry your own container when getting takeout food. Rather than bring home more plastic, carry our own containers to the restaurant. This but it’s one of the best ways we ourselves can start a plastic-free life and it helps encourage other people to do the same.
- Buy dishwashing soaps and detergent in cardboard boxes. Brands like Ecover and Mrs. Meyer’s and many supermarket brands now paper packaging options to help you cut down on the unwanted plastic trash accumulating at home and your local tip.