Baby steps to living that zero waste life
No drastic measures needed to help the environment
Jan 16, 2018
Trash. Sometimes you feel like it, most of the time you’re making it. Either way, trash is a big problem for you, your family, and the rest of the world. And don’t we all know it.
But knowing a problem and having a way to fix it are two very different things. Even though we all know that plastic is one of the main contributors of trash in the world, we can’t help but keep on using it because it’s everywhere. It’s in the supermarket, in restaurants, at home. You use plastic to take out the trash. You use it to brush your teeth (because your toothbrush is plastic, duh). So even if we want to stop using plastic to lessen our trash and get on with that trendy zero waste lifestyle, it almost feels impossible. It isn’t though. Not really.
Here are some baby steps you can take to kickstart that zero waste lifestyle with the help of some local brands.
Choose package-less soaps and shampoo refills
Most shampoos, soaps, and other hygiene products today are sold in plastic packaging. These accumulate over time and make up a good portion of our landfill site, especially in the Philippines where the culture of tingi-tingi leads to an endless number of sachets on the street. To address this problem, there are those who are opting to make their hygiene products at home, but if you’re not ready for that then you can just buy smarter.
Zero Basics is a local brand that sells package-less bars of soap and refillable shampoo, toothpaste, toner, and deodorant bottles. The only tricky part is trying to find which bazaars they’re participating in. But you can just follow their Instagram account for that.
Say ‘no’ to single-use plastic straws and ‘yes’ to reusables
Of all the single-use plastics that plague us, straws are the ones that pollute our ocean the most. And it’s hurting our marine life big time. We’ve all seen that video where a turtle has a straw painfully pulled out of its nose.
Thankfully, we now have local startups that offer reusable straws. Sip.PH is selling steel straws in two sizes, one for your normal juice drink and a jumbo-sized straw for drinking milk tea with pearls. Bambuhay, on the other hand, sells bamboo straws together with a bamboo cleaner packed in a bamboo pouch.
Switch to bamboo the next time you change your toothbrush
Dentists recommend that you change your toothbrush every three months. In a year, that totals to four toothbrushes per person for over seven billion people in the world. And with commercial toothbrushes being made of plastic? You get the picture.
The Bamboo Company offers a greener, more sustainable, biodegradable alternative to our dental hygiene with their charcoal bamboo toothbrush. The charcoal brushes are meant to help whiten your teeth better while the bamboo body is designed with groves for a better grip.
Always travel with a spare canvas bag for shopping
Whether you’re just grabbing a snack from the convenience store or dropping by the supermarket for groceries, leave a canvas bag (or any reusable shopping bag really) in your purse so that you don’t get your purchase bagged in more plastic.
You can use tote bags you get for free during company events or you can also purchase a designated grocery or “buying bag” from brands like Ware Co. Ware Co. is a company born out of research and experiment, the result of which is a line of adaptable canvas totes complete with pockets and adjustable straps. They come in various sizes and a see-through mesh line if you’re one for being stylish while living sustainably.
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