Tuesday, 17 March 2020

Easy Sustainable Swaps To Make For A More Waste Free Life

I made a commitment to myself to live a more simple and intentional life. For someone who is a bit of a hoarder, this has been a bit of a balance. On the one hand, I am doing a no-buy year, but I want to swap out the things I need with more sustainable options when they are used up. I've popped together a list of the easy sustainable swaps to make for a more waste-free life.

Plastic free makeup in a blog post about easy sustainable swaps to make for a more waste-free life.

Making a transition to more sustainable products has been a long process. Why? Because I didn't want to declutter by just throw everything out or donate it. That would defeat the purpose.

Last time, (and the time before...before that), I just disposed of everything in a bid to live a life with less.

This time it is measured and by using up everything and then looking for sustainable alternatives, or by simply not replacing.

A few of the swaps I have made so far include:

Reusable water bottle, coffee cup and lunchbox

An obvious one to start with and probably the easiest to make as they are really accessible and relatively cheap now. Also, most places will give you a small discount if you buy or use a reusable cup.

Cotton pads 

The ones I picked up are so soft and feel just like actual cotton pads. Although they don't wash very well as you can still see the mascara on them. That personally doesn't bother me, but it would be interesting to see if there is a way of getting the stains off.

Body butter 

At the moment I am using a combination of the last of my body butter, a Lush 'Elbow Grease' and I have just purchased a glass jar of Shea butter.

My idea was to transition before I used up the last of my body butter because I have eczema and didn't want any flare-ups. I also figured I could repurpose the plastic packaging and decant into the pots for my bag, bedside cabinet etc.

'Elbow Grease' from Lush in a blog post about easy sustainable swaps to make for a more waste-free life.

Toothpaste 

Georganics Whitening Toothpaste. Initially, my aim was to get the Lush Toothy Tabs, but when we went in, they were out of stock, and I didn't have enough toothpaste to last. Also, I don't know the ins and outs as I am yet to research correctly, but the Lush tabs don't contain fluoride as most (all?) kinds of toothpaste do.

Mouth wash 

Lush Creme De Menthe. The directions say to chew the table, but I let it dissolve in some water and then just use as a regular mouthwash. I even saved the lid of my last mouthwash bottle from dispensing it into. The only thing I am concerned about is that the cap on the bottle has a black top, which is hard to recycle. I'm hoping that if I go into Lush, they may just be able to fill up the bottle for me.

Dental floss 

Better Eco 100% Plastic Free & Biodegradable Silk Dental Floss.

I am yet to go to the dentist to see if the more eco swaps are as good as traditional products. I really want to look after my teeth and the planet, so fingers crossed they are as good.

Georganics Toothpaste, Lush Creme De Menthe and Better Eco Silk Dental Floss  in a blog post about easy sustainable swaps to make for a more waste-free life.

Menstrual cup and pads

So far this year, I have combined my last pack of traditional pads with reusable pads and a menstrual cup. In so far as the reusable pads go, I found them quite bulky for working in. They would perhaps be much better for a lazy day.

The mensural cup was only purchased this month, so I will do a full review of my experience with the menstrual cup once I've used it more.

Soap for shower gel 

As I mentioned with body butter, I have eczema, and Dove shower gel worked really well, so I was frightened to let go.  Dan bought me Lush's 'Sandstone' soap, and I used it alongside the Dove until I was happy it was for me. Why didn't I make the transition sooner!

Lush 'Sandstone soap' in a blog post about easy sustainable swaps to make for a more waste-free life.

Still to come 

Plastic-free make up

Bizarrely, I found this the hardest thing to find. Makeup is just something I use for a quick brightener. Yet, the lack of availability of alternatives means I've spent probably way too much time researching.

Peace With The Wild looks to have some good stuff. I bought their loose powder which I am yet to use. What did I say about "backups".

I also found a few Facebook groups, such as War On Plastic, which people recommended various websites.

Shampoo and conditioner 

I am on the last shampoo bottle. Yet, conditioner wise I have a 1200ml tub which is still 3/4 full of conditioner and another 250ml bottle left to use before I can move to a conditioner bar.

Shampoo and conditioner, I must admit is an area I am fearful of change. Last year my hair started falling out. My only guess is that the hair loss was down to stress as once we moved, it stopped. Once I noticed it was happening. I tried a variety of anti-hair loss shampoos and treatments. Yet the one that "worked" or coincidently my hair calmed down was Aussie. As you can imagine, I am frightened to change what has worked.

Other later swaps 

Going forward, I hope to include a safety razor and deodorant. Although if you saw my Instagram post on the amount of deodorant I found while decluttering, you will know that the deodorant may take a while to be used up!


Have you tried any more sustainable options? 

I would love to hear your thoughts. 

Lots of love, 
Helen x


Pinterest pin for a post about easy sustainable swaps to make for a more waste-free life.


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