One of my goals this year is to eliminate the majority of the plastic we use in our home. For years I’ve been looking for little ways to cut out plastic, but now that I have the simple things eliminated, I’m working on the bigger ones that take slightly more effort. But it’s something that’s important to me, so this year I’m prioritizing it.
If you aren’t quite to the point of eliminating plastic entirely from your life, don’t worry you’ll get there. But for now there are lots of easy ways to cut plastic out of your life that take next to zero effort and make a huge impact.
Reusable Shopping Bags
The most obvious and easiest way to start cutting your plastic use is to get some reusable shopping bags. Think about all the things you need bags for: groceries, running to Target, going to the Mall. I use these jute bags from The Little Market for my groceries and other everyday shopping items. I love the size of the handles and they are super durable and easy to clean. I also like that there’s no plastic on them at all. They come in tons of cute options; I especially love this equal justice line they have.
When I run to the mall, I always take one of my big Sezane totes with me. They fold up super small but can hold SO much. They are truly amazing. But I’ve found that I love taking my own bag and using the shoulder straps so much more than dealing with 6 bags from random stores. It makes life way easier. If you do need to grab a plastic shopping bag at the grocery store or Target, just be sure to return them to the store to recycle. They can’t be recycled with your other plastics and can actually break down the machines. So it’s important you drop them off at the grocery store or Target!
Do you love coffee? Me too! But I hate how wasteful it feels to get coffee on the run. So last year I made an effort to remember to take my reusable cup with me whenever I knew I wanted to get coffee out. This doesn’t always work because sadly I’m not a perfect human. Sometimes I just really need to use the Starbucks mobile order when I’m in a hurry so I have to live with it. In that case, I just take my cup all the way home with me to make sure it gets recycled correctly.
Bottled water is by far the easiest thing to cut out. I think we’re all on a mission to get rid of plastic water bottles. I have a reusable water cup for home and one for work. I take a Swell bottle with me to Barre3. At home I use this filtered water pitcher by Soma. I love the design of it and get tons of comments on it by friends who come over. It also uses a plant-based filter which is better for the environment too!
Reusable Produce Bags
Do you know how many plastic produce bags you use in one trip to the store? Try to count next time and you will be shocked. I would say 75% of my weekly groceries are fresh produce so I personally was using a lot. I got these organic cotton produce bags to take with me and it has been a huge help honestly. Because you know you don’t even have to use the plastic bags? You can just take produce and put it in your cart and wash it when you get home (which you should anyway). But for things like brussels sprouts or lemons that can get wild in your cart and need to be contained, these bags are awesome. They also work great for bulk sections for things like oats, nuts, cereal, etc. Just throw them in the washing machine if they get dirty.
Stasher Bags & Bees Wrap
A major culprit of plastic in a lot of people’s lives is single-use plastic, like Ziploc bags, saran wrap, etc. There’s no doubt they make life a lot easier like packing lunches, throwing a snack in your purse (maybe I’m the only person with purse snacks), or storing food. There are tons of alternatives out there for reusable options exactly like Ziploc bags. I swear by Stasher bags, which are basically just reusable snack bags. They come in a few different sizes which is super handy for snacks, a sandwich for lunch, or storing leftovers. There are also tons of similar options available on Amazon that are super affordable.
A great alternative to saran wrap is Bee’s Wrap. I’ve been using it for a while now and love it. I admittedly don’t use it a lot because I’ve just found alternatives to needing it, like Stasher bags, Pyrex, etc. But no matter how much you use plastic wrap, this is a fantastic alternative.
Last year was the year everyone realized that plastic straws are a huge contributor to climate change and EVERYONE started getting rid of them which has been awesome. I keep metal straws at home and try to take them with me as much as possible. I just ordered a second set to keep in my car because I keep forgetting them. There are also lots of glass options which look super chic, but I can’t be trusted with them. If you’re not into reusable straws, biodegradable paper straws are another option you can keep in your purse, car, and at home. There are so many affordable options on Amazon, you can easily go down the rabbit hole.
What are some other ways you’ve cut plastic out of your life? I’m always looking for new ways to cut plastic!