The news on the environmental front has been so tragic lately, with the fire raging in the Amazon forest, I though it would be nice to focus on the positive things happening in my life on the zero waste front. Also I know a ‘new’ dress isn’t exactly helping on the zero waste front but hear me out – there is a story here. I know I tricked you guys a little bit with this super cool dress by talking about my zero waste stuff but I hope you find my zero waste wins useful in your life too! If you are interested in more zero waste check out my zero waste beginner post.
1. Cruelty free, plastic free ethical chocolate – that tastes amazing
Found the amazing yummy Tonyschocolonely! Plastic free wrapping and slave free making. So I used to love the Kinder egg chocolate. I never knew what to do with the tiny completely useless plastic toys they use to give inside each egg. Felt too horrible about all that plastic so switched to Kitkat. Then researched all about Nestle’s (who makes Kitkat) criminal activities in the formula market and it totally made me want to scream. I even went through M&S chocolate, Hotel Chocolate and all the rest and finally arrived at the doorstep fun, delicious, ethical Tonyschocolonely. DJ hates the milk, caramel and sea salt flavour but I really love it! And I managed to snag it from my local Sainsbury.
2. Stuck my neck out although I was a little embarrassed
I always skipped the berries in Ted’s Veg because they came in plastic boxes. Unfortunately, there is currently almost no other way to get them transported. I plucked up some courage and at the risk of being a complete pain, asked the man if I could just transfer that box of raspberries to my own Chinese takeaway box. I don’t know why I was worried to ask because he said of course and went onto rue about the fact he is compelled to use plastic for the berries.
3. No trash bags
This Western concept of buying and using buying plastic trash bags to put in even more plastic boggles my mind. I just cannot do it anymore. It’s just so incredibly wasteful and stupid. So what do we use instead?
Our compost does not have a plastic lining. There are no 100% home compostable bags in the market. Using terms like compostable or biodegradable is just green washing and are not regulated or defined clearly. Everything is biodegradable only some things biodegrade in a month and some in 700 years. Compostable means nothing unless it specifically says it is home compostable and can be chucked into your compost at home (I still don’t believe these claims since I only see them break down into tiny bits of plastic instead of actually biodegrade). Compostable is a greenwashing term since most items stated as compostable are only compostable through an industrial compost which a majority of us do not have access to. Refusing and making do without an item is the best thing you can do – don’t fall into the greenwashing trap. That brings me back to my trash bags. Since we are not single use plastic free we can use these plastics as trash bags instead of buying even more plastic bags – just to put more plastics in them! So for instance, I use the bags our rice, dal, spices and all the other stuff that we still buy in single use plastic as trash bags.
4. Plastic, cruelty, fragrance and petroleum free lip balm
I joined the bandwagon and got myself some Burt’s Bees lip balm. I wear a lot of lipstick, actually I wear lipstick a lot as you can have seen on the blog so my lips are always dry. I was not a fan of Burt’s Bees. The lip balm has an extremely strong fragrance and mint is one of its prime ingredients. I hate mint in lip balm and have never understand why almost all lip balms insist on adding mint. Mint is drying so this seems to be a completely pointless thing to do – except of course it compels you to use and buy more lip balm. I am convinced there is a conspiracy here!
So anyway, I ended up finding this lovely brand called Beauty Kitchen in one of my favourite stores, Holland and Barret. The lip balm has no petroleum (unlike our childhood favourite Vaseline which causes me amazement – we were literally putting a petroleum derivates on our lips?). It’s of course vegan and cruelty free and that not the best part – the balm comes in an aluminium tin which can either be recycled with other metals by your local council or even returned to Beauty Kitchen for them to reuse (reuse is better than recycling so I would recommend this!). Last but not the least, it’s currently £2 in Holland and Barrett.
5. Successfully researched on zero waste
Zero waste or not, I still need my chips/ crisps. This is an item I have zero control over. I CANNOT STOP EATING CRISPS. Sometimes I am actually happy I don’t live in India because Indian chips is out of this world – my favourite is Balaji which is almost as hard to get your hands on as the new ‘it’ bag. So anyway, almost all crisps come in plastic packaging which is not recycled by most council in the UK (and not recycled in mine which is one of the most progressive councils when it comes to recycling). So I did some research and found out two amazing this:
– it is possible to recycle plastic crisp bags and this is where you can send off plastic crisp bags to be recycled: KSS Air Ambulance, Bulk Market and Terra Cycle.
– a great ethical alternative to supermarket crisps is Two Farmers whose bags actually compost in your home compost in 26 weeks.
And now the dress. DJ actually got me this dress for our anniversary last year. So technically it’s not really a new dress just unworn for a year. I really wanted to wear it once he got it but the weather turned so bad after I got it I couldn’t end up wearing it. Finally managed to wear it to our anniversary lunch!
I hope everyone has a great weekend and long weekend if you are lucky. I also hope my zero waste wins were interesting to read about and useful. If you have any questions about the zero waste aspects or even comments about the dress, its all welcome. As always thank you for reading. Please check out our Instagram – we have started posting a lot of stories and its always fun. Of course we are on Facebook, Twitter and all the rest and would love to hear from you.