Plastic has become one of the most harmful materials to our oceans and environment. It is filling up landfills, harming wildlife, posing risks to our health, and furthermore not disappearing. About half the plastic produced every year is destined for single-use products. In addition, less than 10% of single-use plastic gets recycled. The best way to combat single-use plastic pollution is by reducing plastic consumption. We have compiled a list of alternatives to everyday plastic products to help you with the Plastic-Free July challenge!
Plastic toothbrushes contribute to over a hundred tons of plastic waste annually. An easy and healthy way to combat this problem is by using bamboo toothbrushes, such as Humble Brush.
2. Grocery bags
Approximately 4 trillion plastic bags are used worldwide every year, but only 1% are returned for recycling. A simple solution is to take reusable bags with you when you go shopping.
Skip the plastic forks and knives from take-out restaurants and use your own cutlery instead. If you really need to use disposable ones, look for cutlery made from bamboo or cornstarch.
Half a million plastic straws are used and disposed of every single day. Help protect our environment and animals by refusing straws or opting for reusable ones made from bamboo.
5. Water bottles
In countries that have drinkable tap water, there is a wide misconception that bottled water is safer and healthier than tap water. However, bottled water is subjected to far fewer safety tests and is much more likely to be contaminated than tap water. Additionally, 50 billion plastic bottles are purchased every year, with 80% of them ending up in landfills. If you haven’t already, make the switch to reusable water bottles.
6. Pet poop bags
Instead of using plastic bags to pick up and dispose of pet poop, try using old newspapers. Another alternative is to use biodegradable or compostable waste bags.
7. Food wraps
Using single-use plastic wraps for food every day contributes to a lot of waste! You can use glass containers or find reusable food wraps that keep food fresh for longer and protect our planet.
8. Dry foods
Shop for non-perishable items such as rice, nuts, seeds, and whole grains in bulk using reusable bags and containers. Buying in bulk reduces the need to go to shops as often and reduces the amount of plastic used in food production.
Use bar soap instead of liquid soaps that come packaged in hard plastic. Rather than throwing out the plastic containers you already have, such as from shampoo, lotion, laundry detergent, and dish soap, you can visit refill stores to get them filled with products that are often cruelty-free and kind to the planet.
10. Cotton swabs
Opt for cotton swabs that have paper or bamboo sticks instead of plastic ones. Also look for brands that have plastic-free boxes and packaging.
11. Toilet paper
Look for toilet paper that is wrapped in paper instead of plastic. Also look for brands that make their products from sustainable or recycled materials. Our top eco-friendly pick is Who Gives a Crap, a company who in addition to being plastic-free, also donates 50% of their profits to help build toilets in developing countries.
12. Chewing gum
Most chewing gums contain a plastic component, which is what allow them to be chewy. Chewing gum is the second largest contributor of litter, as it is non-biodegradable. The Humble Co.’s line of chewing gum is all natural, biodegradable, and plastic-free. In addition, every purchase helps fund oral care projects for children in need.
The Humble Co. wishes you the best of luck in the plastic-free challenge! When in doubt, remember to refuse, reuse, then recycle. For more information and resources on how to avoid plastic, you can visit: