Sustainability

Five unexpected ways I’m reducing my plastic consumption

Hi everyone, it feels a long time since I blogged over here.  I’ve been busy writing for other people (over here) and on Instagram but I haven’t felt inspired to sit down front my laptop and add anything here for ages. Well, I’m happy to say that has changed. Maybe it’s the new year, or maybe I’ve just had the break away that I needed? Eitherway, it’s nice to be back.

So, how have you been? What’s new with you? Some things for me are very different – like my second year of studying in the bag (say, whaaaat?! Where did the year go?) and others not so much, like my rapidly growing passion *cough* obsession *cough* for reducing how much single use plastic I’m using.

Over the past year I have been slowly switching up into some more sustainable habits and this year I’m determined to keep building on those foundations but go even further if I can. So if you’re already using a reusable cup and don’t go anywhere without your cotton tote bag but feel like you want to do more to reduce your plastic habit, then this is the post for you.

Here are the five unexpected ways I’m reducing my plastic consumption, and there’s not a bad suggestion in the bunch…

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Re-useable pens – Previously only fashionable with granddads and bankers the world over, I’ve recently discovered the joy of using a reusable pen. I’ve ditched the freebie ballpoint pens as much as possible and have invested in a more long term option that can be refilled. I’m a fan of Caran D’Ache pens but they are astronomically expensive and so have been put on the wish list for now. Instead I’ve opted for a Kikki K pen which can be refilled once the ink runs out.  Ted Baker and Parker also do some lovely options so if you’re thinking of switching to a reusable pen but think it’s too expensive, don’t be, there are some really affordable options available – especially if you shop in TK Maxx as they always seem to have a selection in there for under £20.

Safety razor – step aside disposable razors and enter the reign of the safety razor.  Since finding out that disposable razors can’t be recycled owing to them containing too many different component parts, and they end up in landfill anyway I’ve been on the look out for a more planet friendly option. The safety razor is made entirely of metal and this kit from the Kind Store comes with replacement blades that will last you a while.

Clothes – this year I am pledging to buy clothes that are both pretty and ethical too. Did you know that some clothes contain hidden plastics and that the fashion industry is one of the plant’s biggest polluters as they dump a lot of clothes into landfill? It’s not something I’ve ever thought about but this year I’m especially honing in on brands like Zola Eve activewear and Stay Wild swimwear who make their clothes from recycling materials including plastics, helping address the issue of pollution and prevent further waste. Plus both of them are small businesses run by female entrepreneurs which gets a double thumbs up in my book.

Loose leaf tea – as you might have seen on Instagram, this year I’m switching from teabags to loose leaf tea as much as possible.  I love a decent brew but not at the expense of the planet.  Some of the more popular tea brands hit the headlines last year for having plastic in their bags – meaning that they can’t be composted (I’m not naming and shaming, you can easily find them on Google). So I’ve bought a mug with a built in infuser and some fill-your-own plastic free teabags which have made the transition easy and hassle free and I’ve had the joy of supporting some lovely businesses like Bird and Blend Tea Co. too.

Bring your own – cutlery that is. I used to be terrible for having an enormous stash of the free plastic cutlery from various food outlets that rhyme with ‘Set’ and ‘Bitsu’ but forgetting to use them and inevitably taking another set each time I ate out. Well, not any more!  Thanks to the discovery of the amazing Jennie-Lee and her re-useable cutlery pouches filled with bamboo utensils, a stainless steel straw and straw cleaner I have no excuses. My lovely cat pouch fits neatly into my bag and goes everywhere with me. Again, another small female-led business that I’ll gladly give my money to.

And those are the five simple ways in which I am reducing my single use plastic this year. I’m sure there are many more I’ll find as the year unfolds and I promise I will share them in due course, because there’s always room for improvement, right?

Let me know if you try any of these out, or if you do anything I’ve not mentioned above that you think is a brilliant and I need to give a whirl.

Katie x

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