Reducing Plastic Waste while Saving Money

Reducing Plastic Waste while Saving Money

Reducing plastic waste has been in the talks since years. Many efforts have been made. And yet, I feel like the world still hasn't caught up. Here in Toronto, only recently have the large supermarket chains stopped giving free plastic bags to pack your items. In my recent trip to Florida I still got everything double bagged, with so few items in each bag.
Starbucks still uses to-go cups that aren't recyclable. I don't even want to know how many thousands of these cups land in the garbage worldwide on a daily basis.

But here is the thing: Not too long ago, I also used many products that created a lot of waste, because that is what I've done all my life and I wasn't really aware of alternatives.
I've always kept in eye out for more ways to implement a sustainable lifestyle into a busy schedule. Since I started Windseeker, I've met so many wonderful people who have the same goal.

Here is a list of super easy ways to reduce (plastic) waste and even safe money while doing do!

Our newest addition to the shop:

Solid Shampoo and Conditioner Bars

Did you know that liquid shampoo and conditioner contains 75-85% water?? Yes, you're paying for that (and so is the planet with the big plastic containers it comes in). One of the easiest ways to reduce plastic is to switch to solid shampoo and conditioner bars. I personally love Jack59 for my hair washing routine. Jack59 is a woman- and indigenous-owned business in Edmonton, Canada. Everything is handmade in small batches right there. Their shampoo and conditioner bars are made with zero water and are vegan, paraben, phthalate, silicone and sulfate free. Each shampoo bar eliminates about 3 plastic bottles; conditioner bars even  5 bottles. They come packaged in recyclable boxes.

There are bars out there that are calling themselves shampoo bars, but are actually just soap. They are cheaper to produce and don’t take into account the special needs and considerations of haircare, including pH levels. Jack59 bars are designed to give your hair the very best treatment and are naturally pH balanced, instead of with the use of chemicals. They really have a bar for every hair type, as well as leave in conditioners, dry shampoo, hair serum and biodegradable containers to keep your bars dry and lasting longer. Have a look here!

 Beeswax Wraps

Beeswax Wraps have been around for a while. The average person uses over 2000 square feet of plastic every year in the kitchen. With beeswax wraps you can eliminate that. In addition to reducing the use of plastic, an added bonus of these wraps is that they will actually keep your food fresh for longer, as they are breathable, opposed to plastic wraps and bags. You can easily clean them with cold (important!) water and a brush with soap. You can scrub them quite hard as long as you use cold water. In addition to being much prettier than outdated plastic items, they are also 100% compostable. You can make little snack bags with them, wrap bread, cover leftover dishes, etc. I noticed there is a quite a difference in longevity between the handmade wraps from Canada and their cheaper counterpart produced overseas. Also, if you look at the environmental impact of the freight for mass produced overseas products, it's not as eco-friendly as we would hope. So we'll stick with our Canadian brands that we've tested and love! Find them here.

Bar Soaps

Soap bars are not reinventing the wheel. But there is a change, quite a large one. I looked up the ingredient list of Dove Sensitive Soap Bar. You would think this one is more natural, as it is for sensitive skin. They claim, it leaves your skin "soft and smooth". But the ingredients are all chemical products. There is actually not a single oil in it (which is what we thought soap is made of, right?). The closest thing to an oil is Sodium Oleate, which is derived from olive oil or other vegetable oils. Taking the ingredient list of the soap above, which is an all natural, handmade in Canada, product, the ingredients are all oil and lye, which is used in soap making and is not present in the final product (lye transforms the fats and oils into soap and glycerin).

You might already use bar soap as a hand wash. Consider using them in the shower and special face soap bars as cleansers. They also come in form of shaving soap, household soap (stains and textile cleaning) and dish soap. Find your bar soap here.

Saving Money
All of these options safe you money on the long run, as they last much longer than their plastic (or liquid) counterpart. All while doing something good for your environment too. Once these products reached the end of their life, what is left is biodegradable and compostable. Sounds like a win-win to me!



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