One of the best ways to save our planet involves finding ways to reuse the things we already have. That also includes looking for reusable products to replace the disposable ones that most of us have become familiar with or dependent on. Below are five different things you can reuse each day to make an even bigger positive impact on the environment.
#1 – Your Water Bottle
Despite the negative impact they have on the environment, numerous families continue to utilize throwaway plastic water bottles each and every day. In fact, as a planet, we consume 200 billion plastic water bottles every year – and they don’t just disappear. Plastic sits in landfills for thousands of years, and some of it makes its way into the waterway where it impacts communities of wildlife, too. Instead, choose a reusable water bottle that you can fill with filtered tap water from home. Nixing plastic bottles is a huge first step and one that every family needs to take.
#2 – A Biodegradable Toothbrush
Your toothbrush is another huge source of plastic pollution, and one that can be eliminated if you make better decisions about what you buy. If all 350 million Americans purchase three or four plastic toothbrushes a year, that’s a lot of waste going into landfills. Rather than buying plastic toothbrushes – including replaceable heads on battery-operated toothbrushes, which also contain plastic – consider switching to a sustainable bamboo toothbrush, instead. Unlike plastic, it’s biodegradable, so your dental hygiene practices won’t have an impact on the planet for the next thousand years.
#3 – Paper Towels
Paper towels are staples in most American households, and while many companies have made great strides in producing more sustainable alternatives, paper towels still require energy to manufacture and create ample waste. Rather than continuing to buy single-use paper towels, consider shopping for washable and reusable alternatives. You might be surprised at how affordable they can be – and many still offer the same convenience of pulling a towel off the roll, too.
#4 – Grocery Bags
If you still have a drawer filled with plastic grocery bags somewhere in your home, you’re certainly not alone. Many times, we just don’t think about the impact these seemingly insignificant bags have on our planet. You can visit a website called The World Counts to learn how many plastic grocery bags have been produced worldwide this year alone; at the time of writing, the number was nearly five trillion, and it continues to rise. Bring your own bags from home, and consider investing in mesh produce bags to keep your tomatoes, bananas, and onions safe.
#5 – Food Wraps
Plastic food wrap has been a staple in American kitchens for decades, but as the plastic epidemic continues to grow, new alternatives are surfacing. For example, rather than buying single-use zippered bags for your kids’ lunches, you can buy silicone alternatives that will last for years to come. Instead of plastic wrap itself, you can invest in an alternative called Bee’s Wrap, which is made from organic cotton infused with beeswax, resin, and jojoba oil. Unlike kitchen plastic wrap, this stuff can be rinsed and reused again and again.
If you’re at a loss when it comes to doing your part to save the planet, try one or more of these five options to get started. Whether you’re finally banning paper towels and water bottles from your home or you simply want to try reusable zipper bags in your kids’ lunchboxes, these things can make a significant difference – especially when we all choose to use them instead of the more harmful alternatives.