Beginning to live waste free should be a gradual transition and with small everyday changes you can begin to live more sustainably. Living waste free starts by recognizing your trash omitting habits on a daily basis, and switching these habits out for waste-free alternatives. You’ll notice how much less waste you produce by simply being prepared with your own reusable products to counteract waste.
Think about your daily routine and the products you dispose of in a normal day. It may go something like this; coffee cup on the way to work, plastic water bottle or plastic cup of water at work, plastic sandwich bag along with plastic cutlery for lunch and/or dinner, etc. To combat against this senseless waste, set an attainable goal for yourself that will limit the number of products which can only be used once. For example; make it a goal to bring a reusable coffee mug with you instead of buying a cup from your usual coffee shop. This simple goal will not only be easy to achieve, it will also help you get in the routine of being prepared with reusable products, which is key to living waste free!
Reusable coffee cups are an easy way to eliminate senseless waste, as 58 billion paper cups are being thrown away every year in the US alone! This saddening statistic stems from cups similar to those at Starbucks, that are unrecyclable since they are lined with a thin wax. Even if you only treat yourself to a coffee shop drink once a week, you are still attributing to the amount of waste ending up in landfills.
Limiting or discontinuing the use of disposable products can be a simple task. All it entails is choosing reusable products instead of products we usually dispose of and creating the habit of bringing it along with you through your day. Overtime, the action of carrying reusable mugs, bottles, and cutlery becomes second nature, and your daily waste will be greatly reduced!
Before jumping to buy a new product, first I suggest checking out what your local thrift store has in stock. Not only is buying at second hand stores a cheaper option, it also aligns with the ideology of sustainability, to reuse products to directly limit your waste. When shopping at thrift stores, don’t stay focused on finding the perfect product, instead open your mind and find inventive uses for a simple product.
If you cannot find your desired product at a secondhand store, the next best option would be buying from local coffee shops, gift stores, natural food markets, etc, that could have your product there. Finding local stores that support small business and have good morals are ideal to buy from. Spending money at a store is directly supporting their mission, so be sure that the store is one you can stand behind! Ask around to find these stores that supply eco friendly products, if you don’t know of any already.
For those of us who aren’t lucky enough to live in an area with stores like these, buying online is the next best option! Again, finding a brand that shares the same waste free mission as you, is not only very important, but at times difficult. After searching various sites, I found a few companies that have tons of great products that are designed to limit your waste!
Klean Kanteen “gives people a better option than plastic and lined aluminum bottles: a safe, healthy, lightweight, reusable bottle free of Bisphenol A (BPA) and other toxic substances”.
Large selection of stainless steel, insulated travel cups and bottles.
“KeepCups mission is to encourage the use of reusable cups. We do this by delivering sustainably made products that are fit for purpose in the context of a positive global campaign that strives to make a difference to how we think about convenience culture”.
Branded as the world’s first barista standard reusable cup. Design your own or choose from their pre designed coffee cups and water bottles!
“Our products are designed so we can have a lower impact on the world around us. We develop products that can be used everyday as alternatives to disposables. We want these things to be go-tos, the items you don’t leave home without. Take them everywhere you go, every day, and enjoy using them every single time you do”.
Various lids made of recycled material to attach to mason jars for drinking, eating, or storing
“To-Go Ware brings common sense to the convenience of our “to-go” culture. By providing people with sustainable solutions and healthful alternatives to plastic waste, we hope to make the “throw-away” mentality a thing of the past. We ask you to participate in the process of positive change. Choose to reuse”.
Bamboo utensils for home and on the go and stainless steel food containers for storage or to go meals.
Life Without Plastic
“We are activists for a plastic-free planet working hard to bring you safe, high quality, ethically-sourced, Earth friendly alternatives to plastic products. We are also committed to raising awareness about plastics issues by providing solid science- and experience-based information and showing people, one person at a time, the beauty and simplicity of a life without plastic”.
One-Stop shop for any sustainable product you could possibly want along your waste free journey!