Reusable Water Bottles
“It’s so simple, it’s hard to believe that this might be the single biggest contribution to reducing your plastic use you could make,” McCallum says. “Think about it—in the United States around fifty billion plastic water bottles are used in a year—that’s every single US citizen using a plastic water bottle every other day. When you break it down like that it’s easy to see how just carrying a reusable water bottle around with you can start to make a real difference.”
"Chilly’s water bottles really take the prize for having designs to suit every taste. If you want to go one step further, how about a home soda maker so you don’t even have to buy soda in plastic bottles.”
While reusable containers are best, boxed water like Flow is a good alternative to plastic in a pinch.
Reusable Coffee Cups
“We’re addicted to coffee, it’s true. But I haven’t met anyone who loves drinking it out of a paper cup,” McCallum says. “Get yourself a nice reusable alternative and save the planet from the plastic film our coffee cups are lined with.”
“More than three million tons of single-use diapers go to landfill every single year in the United States,” McCallum explains. “It’s true, parents have a tough time and sometimes it’s just plain common sense to carry a few single use diapers with you—but even if you only replaced the diapers you use in the house with a reusable alternative like Kanga Care’s Lil Joey All-in-One Cloth Diapers, or Bambino Mio’s it would help to stop polluting our land with the plastic these things are filled with.
“While you’re at it—a cloth flannel to replace all the wet wipes made of plastic microfibers! Both these options have the bonus of saving you money too.”
Stainless Steel Lunch Boxes
“It might feel like going back to kindergarten, but think about how much money you spend on food that you just eat whilst walking down the street,” McCallum says. “Take some time at the weekend to make yourself delicious lunches for the week ahead, and take a moment out of your busy schedule to sit and enjoy it. I’m a fan of the stainless steel lunchboxes by Black and Blum.”
“Food on the go is a massive contributor to plastic pollution, and your own self-care could help save the planet too (and your bank balance!). If you are going to eat on the go though (and let’s face it, all of us have to sometime), then how about picking up some reusable bamboo cutlery so you don’t have to use the flimsy plastic you get given at the counter.”
Clothes Washing Bags
“As well as trying to buy fewer clothes made of synthetic materials, for those clothes you already own, washing them in one of these microfiber catching washbags by Guppy Friend will help stop the tiny bits of plastic that shed off your clothes from going down the drain and entering the ocean,” McCallum explains.
“There are also washing machine filters to catch them before they do, and of course a trusty sewing kit so you can use your clothes for longer and stop feeding the fast fashion machine.”
Write a Shopping List
“Writing a shopping list before you leave the house, and thinking about where you’re going to buy your cupboard essentials from can really help reduce plastic,” McCaullum says. “Overpackaging in grocery stores, and multipack deals selling us more than we need are a big problem for both plastic waste and food waste. By being a bit more organized you can stick to getting what you need, from places that don’t use as much plastic. And your mother would be proud!”
Canvas Tote Bags
“So commonplace it’s almost not worth mentioning—if it weren’t for the fact that plastic bags are still one of the most found items on our beaches and in the water,” McCallum says. “They’ve even been found in the Mariana Trench—the deepest part of the ocean more than 11 kilometers beneath the surface of the water. By swapping out plastic bags in favour of reusable ones you can help prevent amazing ocean wildlife from swallowing our trash.”
“Rep anyone or anything you like on your tote of choice—or consider this canvas tote from Madewell that donates 50 percent of profits to water, a charity dedicated to providing clean, safe drinking charity:water to millions of people around the world.”
*Greenpeace does not specifically endorse any of the products mentioned.