How to Stay Sustainable During a Pandemic
The sustainable/ low-waste lifestyle has definitely taken a hit during the pandemic.With massive amounts of disposables such as wipes, face masks and latex gloves being produced, purchased and used, along with some stores not currently allowing reusable shopping bags, litter and general waste has been at an all time high.
I'm here to offer you a few tips on how to keep on (or even begin) your sustainable journey in the midst of a vastly throw-away culture.
When you begin running low on products such as shampoo, paper products (towels, napkins, etc.), cleaning products...you name it, there is probably a low to no waste swap you can make.
I find the bathroom is one of the easiest spaces to convert into a low-waste space. Shampoo, conditioner and soaps can all be purchased in solid, package-free varieties. A plastic razor can be replaced with a safety razor, a definite upfront investment, but much, much less expensive in the long-term. Swap your old toothbrush for a bamboo variety and your tube of toothpaste for solid tabs like Bite, or a metal tube that can be recycled.
Other items that are easy swaps include paper towels and napkins for cloth ones, using a reusable straw, buying food/ products that aren't packaged in plastic or have less plastic,
Two of my favorite resources for sustainable swaps are Package Free Shop and Zefiro
Remember, the most sustainable swaps are those made after you've already used what you have. No need to throw away a functioning item to make a swap!
On the go:
When you're at the grocery store (and they aren't allowing you to bring in you reusable bags), ask for paper bags instead of plastic. If the store only has plastic bags here are some ways to extend their life:
- Use to line a small trash can
- Pick up after your pet
- Carry one in your bag or take it on a walk, so if you see litter you can collect it until you find a trash can
- Line a paint tray for easy clean-up
- Moving? Crumple them up and use to protect fragile items, then reuse them for one of the above!
Whether you're getting take out or ordering in, bring your own cutlery or add in delivery notes to not include plastic cutlery in your order.
If you must...
Wear a disposable mask, remember to cut the elastic bands before throwing it away so wildlife doesn't get caught in it.
Use latex gloves, please be sure to dispose of them properly in a garbage can.
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