8 THINGS I DON'T BUY ANYMORE
ZIPLOCK BAGS/PLASTIC WRAP
Don't get me wrong, I have some ancient Ziplock bags my mother has kept for years. Make no mistake, I haven't purchased a box of these in ages. Stasher bags, beeswax wraps, mason jars, and glass storage containers are the places my leftovers are destined for.
DRYER SHEETS/FABRIC SOFTENER
I used dryer sheets and fabric softener a lot throughout college. Turns out, you don't need these items. Running your clothes in the dryer alone is perfectly fine. If you like a little extra something use wool dryer balls. These last for ages and help cut dry time and static. Fabric softener is dependent for me. Right now my water supply is soft on my clothes. If I notice my clothes feeling heavy or scratchy I use laundry salts and/or vinegar as a softener replacement.
I waited a long time to make this swap! Once you stop buying trash you realize how silly your attachment to certain disposable goods are. I have plenty of bar rags and old cloth towels around the house for messier spills but the unpaper towels are a nice addition I'd recommend to anyone. They roll up easily on the cardboard tube and are incredibly user friendly for guests as they resemble a traditional roll of paper towels. When dirty simply wash and dry before next use. For grease, strain and dump into a glass container. If I have to wipe grease, I use a designated rag or toilet paper.
Pro tip: Keep a wet bag or basket under the kitchen sink for easy disposal of kitchen rags and unpaper towels then wash!
MAKEUP PRODUCTS/SINGLE USE MASKS
Ahh...single use face masks, good times. These days I refill my face masks and buy makeup from brands that sell in glass containers (applicators tops are still plastic). I don't use nearly as much makeup because one way or another virtually all makeup is somewhat toxic. However I still use brow gel, mascara, and occasionally foundation. The place I buy makeup from has a terracycle* box designated for used makeup containers which make the disposal process seamless.
*Terracycle is a nationwide recycling service.
PLASTIC GROCERY BAGS
No brainer here. If you need a bag ask for paper or take the cart/basket to your car.
I now use an unpackaged shave bar. Shave bars are amazing. They lather up nicely and give you a natural shaving cream feel without the aerosol can and toxic foaming agent. A must have especially if you're shaving with a straight edge blade.
PLASTIC WRAPPED/PRECUT VEGGIES OR FRUIT
I avoid supermarket produce and vegetables at all costs! Once you start buying fruit and veggies from local farmers you'll taste the difference. It's hard to go back, plus, who needs or wants their produce wrapped in plastic? If you live in a colder climate there are usually indoor markets or grocery store co-ops you can visit with more local options. This takes more effort but the reward is priceless.
This one is tricky for me still. Clothing has been the most challenging zero waste and non toxic lifestyle change for me. It's more expensive and hard to find at popular retailers. These days I try my best to buy used clothing (cotton or cashmere) and if buying something new I opt for organic cotton or supporting a local business. Cotton is a sustainable resource meaning its plant based, doesn't contain microplastics, and is breathable on the skin. Polyester is petroleum based, leeches microplastics on you and in the waterways, and doesn't degrade.
PEACE, LOVE & FILL UP