With all the recent news about plastic pollution, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the only way to help save the planet is by going completely zero waste. However, this simply isn’t true. Even though reducing your production of trash and reusing as many items as possible is great, it’s not the only way to make a difference when it comes to saving our planet. There are plenty of things you can do to help reduce your impact on the environment while still consuming products and services that you enjoy. Going zero waste may seem like the best option, but there are many other ways you can make a smaller impact on this fragile ecosystem while also having fun.
Zero waste products aren’t just for hippies who hate technology and modern living; they’re a way of life for people who love nature and know we need to take care of what we have left before it’s too late. Here is everything you need to know about these awesome products and how they can help save the world.
What is Zero Waste?
Zero waste is a lifestyle that focuses on reducing waste while also trying to reuse or recycle as much as possible. You aren’t expected to live completely trash-free, but you are encouraged to reduce the amount of waste you produce as much as you can. Zero waste is different to reducing your waste because it’s a way of life.
Zero waste is all about reusing items instead of throwing them away or buying new ones. For example, you can wash out containers instead of buying new ones every time you need to store something, like leftovers, in the fridge. You can also bring your own bags when you go shopping to avoid using the disposable ones at the store.
This way of life actually started to develop in the 1980s as people became more environmentally conscious. It was given this name in the early 2000s, and it’s become a huge thing in the last few years due to the increasing awareness of how trash impacts the planet.
What Is a Zero Waste Product?
A zero waste product is something that is made from materials that can be reused or recycled. While the idea of having to use the same container for everything is obviously impractical and unhygienic, it does make a lot of sense to buy items that can be reused or recycled. This is especially true when it comes to food, hygiene, and beauty products: things that are used and then thrown away every single day, which is a ton of waste!
In fact, the average household produces around 10 times as much trash per year as they did 50 years ago. Most of this waste is food-related, and a lot of it is because we’ve gotten away from actual dishes and are using disposable paper plates, cups, and cutlery. Zero waste is really about avoiding purchasing these things entirely, but if you can’t, then you should look for products that can be reused or recycled.
Why Should You Go Zero Waste?
There are many reasons you should go zero waste, but we’ll keep it simple.
The first and most obvious is that it’s better for the environment. Humans are the main cause of 90% of the world’s pollution, and a lot of that is plastic-related. Producing so much waste is not sustainable, and it’s already affecting the oceans where a lot of this trash ends up. If we don’t do something soon, there will come a time when the oceans are too polluted to support life.
Ways to Be Zero Waste
There are so many ways to be zero waste! The first step is to track your waste, which will help you notice where you can cut back and reduce your impact. If you’re not sure where to begin, there are many helpful guides online.
- Shop in bulk: This is one of the best ways to reduce your waste. Instead of buying packaged items, you can buy things in bulk, which are usually cheaper, unprocessed, and made from real, whole foods.
- Bring your own bag: This is a simple way to reduce the plastic bag waste in your household. You can get reusable shopping bags, or you can simply bring an old bag or box.
- Buy second-hand: Rather than buying new things, you can buy second-hand items, which means you’re reducing demand for new products and extending their life.
- Wash dishes by hand: You’ll produce less waste by not using disposable plates and cups, and you can also help save energy by avoiding the dishwasher.
- Avoid using plastic: When you can, you should avoid using plastic. This includes plastic bags, bottles, and containers. If you have to use them, make sure you recycle them after.
- Upcycle items: Instead of throwing away items, like clothes and furniture, you can upcycle them, which extends their life and gives them a new purpose. If you have a knack for upcycling clothing, you can even sell them on our online marketplace.
- Shop from local shops: If you still have to buy things like toiletries, snacks, and other items, you can shop from local shops, which reduce the demand for imported products, which are one of the biggest polluters.
Zero Waste Products You Can Make
- Make your own toothpaste: You can make your own toothpaste by mixing baking soda, peppermint oil, and coconut oil. You can also use activated charcoal, which has anti-gingivitis and anti-microbial properties.
- Make your own cleaning products: You can make your own cleaning products using ingredients like baking soda, vinegar, and essential oils.
- Use a loofah: A loofah is a natural exfoliator made from the dried fruit of a gourd plant. They come in different colors and can last for years.
- Make your own deodorant: You can make your own deodorant by mixing coconut oil and baking soda. You can also make it with activated charcoal.
- Make your own mouthwash: You can make your own mouthwash by mixing alcohol-free mouthwash, a drop of peppermint oil, and water.
Zero Waste Products You Can Buy
- Purchase ethically sourced products: When you buy things like clothes and cosmetics, you can look for ethically sourced products, which are made without harming animals and are also more environmentally friendly.
- Opt for reusable containers: If you still need to buy new items, like containers for leftovers or food, you can opt for reusable containers so you don’t have to throw them out.
- Purchase items in bulk: You can avoid single-use items, like paper towels and toilet paper, by purchasing them in bulk.
- Buy smart: When you need to buy new items, like food, it’s important to buy smart by choosing items that are less processed and made from real, whole foods.
- Check out upcycled fashion: These are one-of-a-kind statement pieces of clothing that make you stand out AND don’t have a negative impact on the planet
- Choose sustainable products: Look for sustainable products, which are made without harming animals or the environment.
- Try products that are eco-friendly: There are many eco-friendly products on the market. You can look for products that are biodegradable and made from sustainable materials like bamboo and other plant fibers.
- Use reusable plastic containers: You can use reusable plastic containers to buy items like coconut oil and other food items in a single-use container.
Conclusion: Zero Waste Products
Going zero waste can be overwhelming, but it is possible. You just need to start small and be mindful of every decision you make. Before you buy something, think about how you can extend its life or if you really need it in the first place. It will take time to achieve this, but it’s worth it. Not only will you help save the planet, but you’ll feel great knowing that you’re doing your part to protect the only home we have.