Juhuuu, I am so excited about this new article. I know Zero Waste is on everyone’s lips. And that’s a good thing, because this planet suffocates in garbage and disposable plastic. I’m a long way from a perfect Zero Waste life, and 100% – or even just 95% zero-waste life is frankly not, what I’m aiming for, even though I admire others for being so strict.
It is important for me to consciously consume and cleverly replace some everyday objects with sustainable alternatives in order to save waste. And by the way, you do often save money in the process.
Every few weeks there will be a few new product tips and comparisons to the “original” that many of us use compared to the sustainable alternative. In short: zero waste tips for beginners. I have the feeling that many do not even start with “Zero Waste” because they think they suffocate in all the tasks and prohibitions and therefore they don’t even start. That’s why they just let it stay straight.
What I want to do with this article is giving tips about “Zero Waste For Beginners”? Very easily. I want to show that you do not have to be 100% perfect to save this planet, but you have to do something. Few small changes in everyday life and the development of small habits is easier than expected and does not hurt anyone. At best, you infect others with your good deeds. There’s nothing more to do. Because if we are honest to buy a toothpaste tablet instead of toothpaste, none of us falls a jibe from the crown, but for our environment it is an important, albeit tiny and vital step.
Let’s start with the pumice
Honestly. A few years ago, I still thought: “Callus on the feet? Hah! Not with me. My feet are so pure, so gentle, so soft and wonderful that no cornea can emerge. “Well, she can! A few years later I can no longer deny that I have to scrub around there. As a guide is that you need to moisten the pumice stone and then rub with light pressure. However, I think it works best when you soak your feet for a moment (your feet are happy with a foot bath and a few pats) and then apply the pumice stone. Works perfectly! The part lasts for years, it is a natural product and is cheap as well!
The classic: The plastic bottle
So I’m really good at plastic bottles. I seldom buy a plastic bottle so that I can count my annual consumption on 3 fingers. Only if I’m really thirsty, can not fill water anywhere, if I have a headache or anything like that, do I buy a plastic bottle. Well, that just never happens. Because I’m usually well prepared with my own bottle. As simple as that! I recommend drinking bottles made of lightweight material. But I also have a beautiful glass bottle, which I like to use at home.
When I go out I like to use SIGG aluminium bottles, which I use almost every day for several years already.
Toothbrush tablet versus toothpaste
Although I have the toothpaste from Dr. Bronner, our relationship has come to an abrupt end. Once toothpaste, never something else. For the first time, it may be unfamiliar to chew on it and then put the toothbrush in your mouth. It tastes pleasantly fresh and works just fine. So there is no way back!
Extraplus: For traveling, the tablets are of course really convenient, because they take up little space and weight and are completely without liquid.
Stainless steel razor
Finally, a razor has moved in with us, which will last for many, many years. Respectively, I do not know what can kill this razor. I think he is immortal! Away with cheap plastic razors, which can only be used a few times. You can easily insert and replace the blades at relatively low costs. Shaving works extremely well! And yes, you can shave yourself with it everywhere else too! I’m a bit over-cautious because I’m a bit worried about cutting myself, but I think that’s a matter of habit.
PS: In the hand luggage you may take the razor with you when you travel by plane.
The easiest and most common way to save plastic and paper is to bring your own bag to shop. You can, for example, carry jute bags or larger, reusable bags made of solid plastic, if you make a very large and heavy purchase. Sure, it may take a little while to get used to always taking a bag, but it’s worth the transition. You save so much garbage!
Worldwide, one million plastic bags are used per minute!
Ideally you can use any bag / backpack / car / etc. to deposit a bag. So you always have something when needed for spontaneous purchases. Mesh bags and jute bags are now everywhere. I like the original mesh bags by Filt the most but others are good too.
The good, old fruit bag
I do not want to deny that I sometimes buy plastic-packed fruit and vegetables. Nobody’s perfect and sometimes I just can not make it to the right supermarket. But I tell you to use these plastic bags or bags to pack vegetables or fruit, that’s a crime! Every now and then my heart is bleeding when I see people packing their stuff (often just a single zucchini or 2 apples) without thinking. My solution: The vegetables / fruit just wear it, take a cotton bag and pack it there or if necessary, just take a paper bag. Although we all know since this Life Update that paper does not save much more resources than plastic. If you ever should take a paper or plastic bag for fruit or vegetables, then definitely use the paper bag!
I myself am still getting used to taking always some with me. It’s just a habit that does not change overnight. But what you can do today: buy / sew cotton bags and at least try to always take them with you. Maybe you always go shopping with a particular backpack? Then you can deposit them there, for example. You already have something!
Solid soap instead of soap dispenser (or fill liquid soap from the Zero Waste store!)
For hand washing, we have long been using solid soap instead of liquid soap, at least 95% of the time. Why? First, solid soap lasts forever (definitely longer than normal, liquid soap – and here Dr. Bronner is an exception because it’s “high-dose” soap, so to speak) and is therefore cheaper.
Secondly, liquid soap is always packaged in plastic and if you buy a nice soap dispenser and then buy refill packs again and again, at least these are made of plastic. If you do not like solid soap, you can alternatively buy a beautiful soap dispenser – or build one yourself from a Lemonaid bottle and matching attachment, see cover picture – and then fill liquid soap directly in the Zero Waste Shop. I’ll try that too. At the moment I am very happy with my solid soap for washing my hands and if I get a liquid soap as PR sample from time to time, I still like to test!
But back to the solid soaps: We take there again and again different brands, whereby I use the one from River Soap Company – vegan, fair and natural – likes to. I also have a firm soap to take a shower. Step by step.
Solid soaps are everywhere!
A really easy way to bring a little more sustainability into everyday life is simply to buy a bamboo toothbrush instead of a conventional plastic toothbrush. They are now available from many different brands and they keep really good and long. Just like normal toothbrushes. I’ve been using bamboo toothbrushes for years and am very happy with it. Now that I also use dentifrice tablets, I’m actually Zero Waste when it comes to dental care. The problem with conventional toothbrushes is not only that they are made of plastic, but also that they are additionally packaged in plastic and paper. A manufacturer produces on average 600 kg of plastic waste per year. Even though the toothbrush only looks like a hot drop on the cold stone, think about how many people you can inspire in your community to also resort to a natural brush. If you then change a few other things, you are already half an Eco.
Sustainable life can be so easy!
In the US, 160 billion plastic straws are consumed annually. That is questionable. This is very worrying. What can be done about it? In restaurants, ALWAYS say that you do not want a straw. This is – as always – a matter of habit. Meanwhile, there is a straw in every drink. And yes, even if you ask to not receive a straw, you get one 50% of the time anyway. Do not give up and keep asking.
But it is also unfavorable that many people buy plastic or paper straws for home use. Sure, paper is better than plastic, but somehow it does not. Because it is still disposable. And we just want to get away from this disposable thing, right? We have therefore accumulated a small but fine collection of stainless steel and glass straws and we love them hot and heartfelt. Personally, I like glass straws rather than stainless steel, but that’s a matter of taste. We also have a straw brush to clean the straws. If you still have disposable straws at home, the world does not sink! Just use them up and then get beautiful glass Straws or simply drink without a straw
Firm body lotion versus liquid body lotion
I have to admit that I use the solid body lotion only as a supplement. Although I love her, it smells wonderful and is very rich, I also use body oil and normal natural cosmetic body lotion only from time to time. The mixture is ideal for me at the moment. Maybe someday I’ll just use the solid lotion. With the solid lotion I just rub on the body and that’s it. It absorbs quickly and feels amazing. I can highly recommend it!
With every product, you get it in the store, that’s way better than ordering it online. First of all, at best you are supporting small eco-businesses and secondly you are saving packaging! But if you don’t have a store near you, you can buy at the links I added to the article and with your purchase you support my operations too.
I hope you enjoyed this article, but I’m sure you can do a lot with small changes! Next time we will continue with many simple and effective tips and tricks on zero waste.
With small changes in our (consumption) behavior, we can do sooo much good! That’s why I am going to update this article regularly, because I am sure that over time there are even more simple tips for a more sustainable life! So stay tuned and come back regularly for more.
If you have additional suggestions and “Zero Waste” ideas, feel free to share those in the comment box below – tank you