I am now almost 2 weeks into not buying anything plastic so wanted to give you all a little update. To be honest it has been a mixed bag, some things easy, some just ridiculously hard! When I can shop at my Sunday farmers market it is easy to buy all my fruit and veg for the week without plastic. Likewise, if I can get to the health food shop, I can fill up on oats and rice in my own jars. But when I need to go to the supermarket, it is near impossible. It seems to be the cheaper the supermarket, the more the products are packaged in plastic. Asda was a nightmare, I never normally shop there, but on Friday I had to while driving to Aberdeen and there were literally 4 things not in plastic that I found. 1 type of loose apple, avocados, red peppers and Krisprolls. Everything else I found was in plastic, it really hit home just how big this issue is! I have not yet had to buy any cleaning products or toiletries, but I think that will be a pretty damn difficult task too!
I then had a family event on Saturday and again it was a bit difficult trying to not have anything which was plastic. Obviously when it came to the food I was not too fussy, as to ask what had not come in plastic packaging would just have been the icing on a cake for an already busy and stressful afternoon of hosting for my Auntie and Uncle! I tried my best to eat what seemed most likely to have not come wrapped in plastic, including a lot of watermelon and pineapple! However they had plastic plates and cutlery and I didn’t realise the plates were plastic until after using one, ugh, but cutlery I just did without. Incidentally, eating a baked potato and salsa with no cutlery is quite the challenge. The good thing is my family are awesome and super supportive of all my ridiculous endeavours so were not offended by my messy eating! In fact it just opened up the conversation a bit more as to how bad the plastic reliance in the world really is! But again it just opened my eyes to how much plastic we are surrounded by!
But back to the point, what have I actually learned????
The ingredients to make your own fake meat are really easy to buy in paper
I will caveat this by saying I have not actually had the chance to make it yet, but the ingredients are pretty easy to get in paper, although it did mean shopping on Amazon. Watch this space to see how the actual cooking goes……
Make up packaged in anything but plastic is hard to find
I hate to be negative, but the reality is, I can’t find makeup which is not packaged in plastic. In an ideal world, by the end of the month I will have found a few different companies to chose from, but back in reality, I am not overly sure this will happen. I have found a couple of brands doing refills but would love to know if non plastic packaged make up exists. Can anyone give me some insight as to where I can get such a thing??
Zero waste is impressive
People are actually pretty impressed when you use things which are not the standard plastic bags given in shops. It can feel embarrassing to bring your own tub or bag, especially the first time you do it. However, every time I have, which has obviously significantly increased this fortnight, people comment on how ingenious an idea it is. Not only does this remove the embarrassment altogether, it actually makes you feel pretty proud of what you are doing. And who knows, the conversation that ensues may just make someone else consider their waste!
It saves so much money!
Not buying junk food or just grabbing something easy for lunch or dinner (not to mention not eating take out, although I have had pizza, I am such a fail!) saves so much money. I have spent about a quarter of what I normally would by only eating fresh homemade food. The results are slightly out as I have not had to buy any nuts due to an abundance in the cupboard, but overall, it is definitely cheaper.
It was zero waste week
Can’t believe I did a zero waste challenge, not knowing it was zero waste week at the start of September! If you are just learning this now, then yes you have missed it, but don’t let that put you off. Try changing just one thing in your lifestyle to reduce waste this month!
So far, so good I think for my first two weeks plastic free. I am significantly more aware of plastic and am looking forward to getting even more zero waste savvy in the coming weeks! Moving forward with the rest of the month, my challenge this week is a holiday in Mallorca, and then at the end of the month a week away with work. Watch this space!