Did you know that Australians currently generate 59kg of single-use plastic waste per year? Each?! YIKES.
Over the past couple of years we have made a real effort to reduce the amount of plastic we are using in our homes. We all know how important it is for our planet that we reduce plastic use, but it can be a real challenge finding products to replace the usual suspects in our homes, without compromising on quality. We are by no means perfect and like most people we still have a long way to go but we are also firm believers that doing SOMETHING is better than doing NOTHING. So we have taken small steps and started replacing some of our common household cleaning, laundry, beauty and body items with more sustainable options.
Plastic Free July is a movement that started in 2011. It supports reducing our plastic use in our homes, workplaces and lives with a vision of a plastic free future. Their website is full of ways that you can get involved, donate (they are a registered charity) or find tips for helping your world through reducing your plastic usage. Have a look below at some of the businesses that are creating change right here in Australia by offering reusable, compostable or sustainable options for everyday household items.
We love Tirtyl because not only is it a business kicking some serious enviromental goals, it’s also fun! Kids absolutely LOVE dropping the hand soap tablet into the glass foaming dispenser and watching it dissolve! What a way to get kids interested in washing their hands AND helping the planet.
All of their tablets come wrapped in 100% home compostable packaging so pop it in your compost – no plastic waste in sight! Tirtyl also gives proceeds from all products to pay wages to locals in developing communities to collect ocean-bound plastic, most often on beaches and rivers. How good is that!
And it’s not only hand wash – Tirtyl now also has laundry detergent sheets and dishwasher tablets with a universal cleaner and Tirtyl towels (resusble paper towels) coming soon. So they pretty much have your whole house covered and you can rest easy knowing you’re reducing your plastic use by using Tirtyl.
Check out the range here: www.tirtyl.com.au
We had been on our mission to reduce plastic in our lives for awhile and I kept thinking to myself “if only I could find a lip balm that doesn’t come in a plastic tube….does it even exist?”
Low and behold, I discovered Riverbalms while on a holiday in the Riverland and I have never looked back! Locally made right here in the SA Riverland by Felicity, this is a small business with heart. She creates lip balms in cardboard tubes that last ages and in small tins perfect for your handbag or in the car. No plastic packaging in sight – pop the cardboard tube in the compost when you’re done and put the tin in the recycling.
She has a great range of scents too including peppermint, lavender, natural and coffee. Not only does Riverbalms make fantastic lip balms with all natural ingredients, Felicity also produces a chest rub which has been a SAVIOUR for the kids colds in winter.
Order your Riverbalms here: www.riverbalms.com.au
Oh Ethique. how we love thee!
Ethique is our go-to for plastic free beauty products. Not only are the products themselves FANTASTIC, all the packaging is plastic free and completely compostible. So when you take out a new product, just put the package in your home compost bin!
Solid beauty bars is what Ethique is all about, so your products aren’t dilued with water and use science to make sure the product does what you want it to! it means you’ll be eliminating all those plastic bottles from your bathroom which feels great (and makes the bathroom look better too!). They have a HUGE range, making everything from shampoo and conditioner bars, body cream bars, lipstick, lip balms, cleansers and moisturising bars. They even have a kids range and pet range, so the whole family really can go plastic free!
If you’re not sure what to buy first or which products are right for your hair or skin type, you can order their Minis to test out a few.
Order online here: www.ethique.com.au
If you’re looking for products that will look great in your house, as well as help the environment then Resparkle is for you!
Their dish wash, hand wash, all purpose cleaner and laundry powder are powder based concentrates that come in compostable sachets. Their dispenser bottles are glass and silicone, super durable and GORGEOUS! They are a truly Australian business, with their products being made in Melbourne.
Once you have the dispenser bottles, keep it simple and sign up to a Resparkle subscription. No need to even think about it, the products will just turn up at your door!
Resparkle is 100% plant based, vegan and cruelty free, plastic free and made right here in Australia – sign us up!
They’ve even given us a sneaky discount code, just for Kids In Adelaide fans! Enter RSKidsInAdelaide10% at the checkout for 10% off.
Terms & Conditions:
- 1 redemption per user
- Expires 31st July 22
- Not applicable for sale items
Grab it online: www.resparkle.com.au
We have been using No Pong for YEARS, so needless to say, we are big fans. No Pong is an anti-odourant that comes in a container made of tin-plate and is fully recyclable once you’re done. Or do what we do and use the empty tins to store bits and bobs around the house!
You only need a pea-sized amount per underarm to be pong free all day long – it really does work! It is made from all natural ingredient and doesn’t have any nasty aluminium in it. There are a few fragrances and options to choose from including original, spicy chai, low frangrance, vegan, bicarb free and the fun ‘Secret Santa’ frangrance.
You can either make one-off purchases or sign up to a No Pong subscription which means you never have to worry about running out or re-ordering, just wait for it to be delivered each month!
No plastic, no nasties and an anti-odourant that actually works – no wonder we love it!
Order here: www.nopong.com.au
Wave goodbye to plastic with evercleaner. We were new to this brand and super impressed with how well the products work! Here’s what they have to say on their website that won us over:
“In comparison to conventional cleaning agents
● 96% less plastic ●
Each tab avoids a disposable plastic bottle
● 85% less carbon emissions ●
Because we don’t transport heavy bottles
● 100% save money ●
At $3 per tab (equals 500ml) we pass on all savings to YOU!”
Grab yourself their ‘everbottles’ (which have a lifetime guarantee fyi!) and refill it forever with their tabs and water – how easy is that?
They also have eco-laundry sheets so you’ll never need to buy heavy plastic bottles filled with chemical laden detergent from the supermarket ever again. The best part? Their stuff works REALLY well!
Grab it via their website: www.evercleaner.com.au
Zero Co is a cleaning and body care staple in our house – they have a fantastic range of planet friendly, low tox products that contain no nasties. Best of all, they are committed to closing the loop on recycling, meaning their forever bottles are all made from recycling plastic waste that has been pulled from the ocean, beach or landfill and their refill packs are made from recycled plastic. Yay!
Here’s how it works:
- On your first order you will receive a forever bottle and refill packs for your chosen product, along with a postage paid return mailer.
- Fill the forever bottle and enjoy using Zero Co’s fantastic low tox products around your home and on your body.
- Once you have collected enough empty refill packs, send them back to Zero Co in the postage paid return mailer for them to be re-used again and again!
- Say see ya later to single use plastics!
Zero Co also fund ocean cleanups – you can have a look at their website to see how many water bottle and plastic items have been saved from the ocean as part of their cleanups.
Find out more here: www.zeroco.com.au
Started by Elzanne, BBcino was born from her sons love of babycinos and her determination to reduce the amount of waste generated by single use disposable cups. BBcino cups are made from bamboo, are biodegradable, eco-friendly, dishwasher safe (BIG WIN!) and are packaged using recycable materials.
Oh and did we mention that they come in super cute designs and patterns that your kids will love?
If your child loves getting a babycino when you get your coffee and you cringe at the waste generated by those little disposable cups, then jump onto the BBcino bandwagon! They are honestly the cutest things ever. You can grab them from the website. Each one also comes with a reuseable silicone straw so you can use your BBcino cup for cool drinks too!
Order here: www.bbcino.com.au
When we started our mission to reduce plastic around the house, The Dirt Company was one of the first businesses I ordered from. I tried their laundry detergent and I was hooked and immediately signed up for their subscription service.
When you buy a Starter Pack from Dirt, you get one of their glass dispenser bottles (already full!) and a refill pack of laundry detergent. Away you go! Here’s what we love about it:
- When your dispenser bottle is empty, use the refill (made of 30% post industrial recycled waste) to start over again. It’s the perfect amount to fill the bottle so you won’t be left with half used refill packs.
- Send your refill packs back to The Dirt Company and they will sanitise and refill it again to be sent out again!
- You know when a refill pack has been re-used as it comes with a a little “I’m on my second/ third use” sticker on it which gives you the warm and fuzzies!
- The pump of the dispenser bottle is cleverly designed to measure out your detergent so you know you are using the right amount each time.
- The bottle is made of glass and BPA free silicone – no plastic here!
The detergent itself is also excellent and will wash your clothes as well as (if not better!) than any of the big supermarket brands. The bonus of using Dirt is that the ingredients are naturally derived and 100% biodegradable.
Start using Dirt here: www.thedirtcompany.com.au
It’s often not something that’s on our radar when we think about reducing our plastic waste, but pads and tampons are HUGE contributors to landfill. Think about how many pads or tampons you use each period…. then multiply that by 12 (assuming you have a regular cycle). Then multiply that by the number of people in your house that use pads and tampons, then the number of people in your street, then… well you get the idea. That is a LOT of single use waste going to landfill.
Modibodi period undies are the answer! Wear them, wash them and repeat forever! They are super absorbent, come in heaps of great colours and patterns, have different options to suit lighter or heavier flows and sizes start from tweens and teens, right through to adults. They even have swimwear! Grab your self a pair to try and you’ll never have to worry about leaks OR using single use pads or tampons again.
Check out the range on their website: www.modibodi.com
High quality, natural and organic skin care is what Black Chicken Remedies is all about. No toxins, no chemicals, no nasties, just great remedial products all with a therapeutic benefit.
Black Chicken Remedies have HEAPS of products to choose from, including soaps, balms, serums and hair care, however our favourite has got to be their Deodorant Paste and their Balm Of Ages… it’s a lip balm, cleanser, nipple balm, shaving balm, nappy rash balm and HEAPS MORE. Seriously, I think it could probably cook us dinner too!
We absolutely LOVE using Black Chicken Remedies products, knowing they are nourishing our skin and bodies. Their containers are great to reuse once you’ve finished the product too – we use ours to collect our bread tags for recycling!
Check them out here: www.blackchickenremedies.com
There are also plenty of other ways you can reduce your plastic consumption in your home without spending any money. Or let’s face it, some plastic use is inevitable in the home unless you are really strict – just make sure you are re-using and recycling wherever you can! Have a go at some of these tips:
Join your local Buy Nothing Facebook Group
These work in a similar way to Marketplace or Buy, Swap, Sell groups but everything is gifted for FREE, with the idea that it keeps products from going to landfill and promotes re-use over buying new. You can either GIFT items in the group (great for when you are de-cluttering) or you can post a WISH for an item you need – you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how generous people are! Find your local group on Facebook.
It sounds simple however recycling properly actually takes a lot of time and effort – but it’s well worth it! Check out your local Council’s website to make sure you are properly sorting your rubbish and recycling (each Council usually has slightly different guidelines) into rubbish, recycling and green waste. We recommend setting up a cupboard with different tubs labelled clearly so the whole family knows what goes in where. Don’t forget that here in SA, you can take your 10c deposit cans, bottles and containers to the local depot and earn some money back!
Place a bag somewhere inside a cupboard or drawer to collect your soft plastics (cling wrap, plastic bags, etc) – when it is full, take it to your nearest RedCycle collection point (usually your local supermarket). They are then collected to recycle the soft plastics into new products – everything from kerbs, bench seats and footpaths!
Collect Bottle Tops
As most of us know, you need to remove the lids and bottle tops from things like milk cartons and soft drink bottles before we put them into the recycling. But did you know that the bottle tops CAN also be recycled? You just need to be savvy about it! Our tip – wash out a 2 litre milk carton, let it dry then slice a slit down the side of the container. Each time you remove a bottle top, pop it through the slit. Once the bottle is full of lids the full bottle can go into your regular recycling! You can also pop plastic bread tags in as well – or have a look at our next tip!
Donate Bread Tags and Bags
Check with your local school or community centre if they are participating in a bread tag or bread bag recycling program. Many school or groups collect bread tags to send away to be repurposed as prosthetics, wheelchairs, play equipment and more! Most families go through A LOT of bread too, so why not have a chat with your school about the Wonder Recycling Rewards program?