Some of my followers may or may not kmow, but its Plastic Free July! What’s plastic free July you ask? It’s a campaign based out of Australia to decrease or eliminate single-use plastic waste for the month of July. You can sign up here, register and choose the amount of plastic, type and amount of time you want to go plastic free! Using social media and the tools available on their website you can find alternatives to basically everything!
Our household strives to eliminate many plastic items already, however there is always room for improvement! This month I will be chronicling our attempt to be entirely plastic free, sharing with you the good the bad and the ugly. As always I try to show my readers the realities of sustainable living which includes some roadblocks and a lot less granola than one would think.
But I digress! We are here today to talk about being green on the go! Convenience is one of modern societies defining features. You can basically get what you want, when you want it, anywhere. But that of course comes with both an environmental and financial cost. Convenience packaging includes takeout containers, coffee cups, straws, ketchup packets, plastic cutlery etc etc. Not only do consumers pay the financial burden of these one-time-use-only products, but so do the companies which have to provide them as overhead costs to some extent. If there were less of them, there would be less cost all around!
Like many things in life, staying green on the go is all about preparation (like the boy scouts say!) But if you’re like me and lack those specific skills, then you may want to do what I do: stash green necessities in my vehicle and purse. That way if I need something, Boom! In the trunk of my car. Or Schwing! In my purse! So without further adieu, here are my Top 10 Green on the Go necessities:
1.) Trusty Tumbler or Travel Mug. If you’re like me and have to have coffee in hand 24/7, then a good quality stainless tumbler is a must! They don’t retain smells like plastic coated ones and a quality one like this will keep your beverage hot for hours. Look for important labels like BPA and BPS free in both the vessel and lid components. Pro-tip: if I order iced-coffee on the go I have them put it in my tumbler and skip the straw. Who said you have to see/sip your iced coffee? You know its in there…
2.) Snacks. Snacks. Snacks. Avoid those pricey cheese/cracker boxes from Starbucks or a Styrofoam cup of smoothie by packing snacks in reusable baggies to toss in your purse or backpack. I use these ones from It’s Sew Kara, which are washable and food safe. Save money on both snacks and on plastic ziploc bags.
3.) The last straw! If you like to sip your beverages from a straw then consider getting a reusable stainless or glass straw. I have one just constantly floating around in the bottom of my purse (clean of course). Mine are plastic (not the greatest I know, but I already owned them prior to this list and they do the job). Otherwise just ask for no straw the next time you’re out for drinks! Nothing wrong with sipping from the side of the glass. Plus nothing will turn you off of straws more than the turtle video.
4.) Stainless lunch kit. One of the best ways to eliminate single-use plastics from you life is to skip the take-out lunch. Pack your lunch (or leftovers) in a stainless steel bento style lunch box like this 100% Stainless Steel Bento Food storage Container Box. Not microwave friendly, but great for salads, fruits and cold meats/cheeses on the go. I have a vintage Indian style tiffin set which has lasted me 10+ years.
5.) Utensils/Napkin. Personally I just pack along a set of cutlery from home and a reusable cloth napkin, but for those of you who want something lightweight and compact check out these amazing natural bamboo and stainlesssteel options! I bought my sisters Littles these fun plastic sporks from Light My Fire.
6.) Water bottle. Aren’t we always hearing from the health media that we should drink more water? Well, do it right with a good water bottle. I personally use a S’well bottle since it keeps water cold for an eternity and doesn’t taste like a pool noodle like plastic water bottles do.
7.) Shopping bags. This is a big one for me since I tend to pick groceries up on my way home from school or after visiting clients. Tuck a foldable one like this into your purse or throw a grocery tote in the back of your car. Chronic bag forgeter? I will actually throw my grocery bags on the hood of my car after I unload them so I can’t forget. Have your kids do it, they will think its funny!
8.) Diva Cup. Alright, this one is for the Girls. Feminine products are almost now exclusively plastic or synthetic disposable items which adds up over a lifetime of periods. Consider switching to a cup product like the Diva Cup. I will never go back again! Just set it and forget it for up to 8 hours.
9.) Travel toothbrush instead of gum or brush-ups. I am a self-admitted overbrusher, likely because I drink coffee, so I used to use Oral B Brush-Ups (disposable finger toothbrushes). However, now I have a foldable toothbrush and travel toothpaste which I take with me one the go! When it wears out, instead of replacing it with another plastic brush I am going to buy this great travel case and use a bamboo brush.
10.) A Great Tote. This is a must have if you are a commuter or like to keep your hands free. I use this gorgeous bag from Eba Totes which is vegan and sustainably made with recycled synthetic fabrics and is waterproof! The separate compartments allow me to put last minute groceries on one side all the while keeping my tablet and phone dry on the other!
Cheers to you! Heather
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