My Plastic Free July

Updated: Aug 2, 2019



I won’t lie, I had lofty ambitions for Plastic Free July: reducing waste, overhauling a lifestyle and a stepping towards changing the world. I wouldn’t describe it as a complete disaster but neither has it been an unmitigated success. I knew it would be difficult and I had made a mental note to try my best but not obsess. Even so, I wasn’t quite prepared for the amount of preparation needed to go plastic-free for a month. The amount of time it takes, at least initially, to remove plastic from your lifestyle could be a full time job, researching, sourcing and making.


Take snacks for example, a big source of single-use plastic in my house. Plastic-free snacks required finding recipes, sources plastic-free ingredients and then making/baking them not to mention tidying up afterwards Versus popping to the shop. Were they tastier? Yes. Were they healthier? Probably. Did I feel better about eating them? Definitely. But it’s easy to see why most of us choose convenience over conscience. 


On the other hand, bringing single-use plastic to the front of mind for a month has been an enlightening and often enjoyable experience. Making and creating things for ourselves along with sourcing more ethical goods has been rewarding and a lot of fun and hopefully something we can make part of our everyday lives. We’re not quite done yet but already I’m much more aware and in touch with our consumption as a family and can see many more ways to reduce our impact over time, if not immediately.  


Here are some of our top successes and challenges of my Plastic Free July


Success

Fruits & vegetables - with a combination of local veg box delivery schemes and different supermarkets it was quite easy to shop for fresh produce without the plastic.


Challenge

Cheese - a pretty essential element in our house and being too disorganised to get to a farmer’s market meant our cheese continued to come in plastic


Success

Soaps & scrubs - using a soap pouch instead of shower gel was a hit and an easy change to make and so too was making my own (delicious) sugar scrub. <