Posted on Leave a comment

Simple swaps you can make this Plastic Free July

If you’re trying to be a bit greener this July then here’s some simple swaps to help you live more sustainably:

1. Reusable coffee cups vs Takeaway cups

In the UK we use 7 million disposable coffee cups every day – that’s 2.5 billion every year. And less than 1per cent of these end up being recycled. This is due to the thin plastic lining which makes them difficult to process for recycling. Reusable cups on the other hand, are designed to last for years if cared for properly. Having a reusable coffee cup in your bag or at the office gives quick access to an alternative to the single use cup, our Double Walled Coffee Cups are lightweight and durable.

Paper takeaway cups don’t offer much in the way of insulation, so your drink wont stay hot for long, a reusable cup can keep your drink hotter for longer, and offer some protection to your fingers too! Our Reusable Insulated Coffee Cups have high quality double-walled stainless steel construction to keep your drink the perfect temperature. We also have Glass Coffee Cups, which are designed to replicate your coffee shop drinking experience and unlike plastic or bamboo will not taint the flavour of your drink.

And as well as helping the planet by cutting your plastic usage, there are additional benefits for your wallet too. Many coffee shop chains offer discounts to customers who bring their own cup. If you’re a regular coffee drinker, you could save more than £100 a year. Or if you can make your own at home and take it out with you, you’ll save even more!

Our range of reusable cups includes:

💚Recycled rice husk cups in 400ml or 500ml

💚Glass coffee cups in 12oz or 16oz (the 16oz fits a standard medium latte)

💚Insulated 12oz coffee cups and insulated 24oz tumblers (Comes with a leakproof flip lid, a screw top straw lid and a reusable stainless steel straw.)

💚Compostable Coffee Cups

2. Reusable water bottle vs Plastic bottles

In 2018, UK use of plastic water bottles increased by more than 7 per cent, according to market research company Zenith. The industry is worth £3.3bn. And this isn’t just bad for the planet and the ocean, where many of these plastic bottles ultimately end up. It’s also bad for us. Plastic bottles contain Bisphenol A (BPA), an endocrine disruptor which has been strongly linked to a host of health problems. BPA enters the human body through exposure to plastics such as bottled drinks. 💚Our Reusable Glass Bottles are made from BPA free and fully recyclable materials and provide a clean and pure drinking experience.

💚 Our 600ml stainless steel bottles keep your drink at the correct temperature throughout the day whether hot or cold.

3. Bamboo toothbrush vs Plastic toothbrush

What with the vast majority of toothbrushes being plastic, you’ll end up throwing away a lot of them if you adhere to most manufacturers’ recommendations to replace your toothbrush every three months. In fact, every year over a billion plastic toothbrushes are thrown away worldwide, ending up in landfill, in the sea or washed up on a beach.

Thankfully, there is an alternative available. Bamboo toothbrushes, which are made from more sustainable materials. Once you’re finished with one, you can compost the handle and recycle the bristles.

💚We have a few different brands and lots of lovely colours to choose from. Plus children’s and baby versions too

4. Toothpaste tablets vs Plastic toothpaste tubes

Toothpaste tubes are typically made of non-recyclable plastic and can take around 450 years to decompose. The tubes are made of multiple layers of materials fused together, so breaking them down for recycling is much more complex than for other household items. One alternative is Truthtabs: these tablets are easy to use, simply pop one into your mouth, bite and brush. They foam and clean just like toothpaste but come in fully biodegradable and recyclable packaging.

5. Wax wraps/Silicone Lids vs Clingfilm

More than 1.2 billion metres, equating to 745,000 miles of cling film is used by households across Britain every year – enough to go around the circumference of the world 30 times over!

Cling film is difficult to recycle, meaning the majority of it ends up in landfill where it takes hundreds of years to degrade and risks leaching chemicals into groundwater. Like plastic bags, cling film that ends up in the sea is easily confused for jellyfish by marine animals and chokes turtles and other creatures that feed on them.

💚Reusable Vegan Wax Wraps are a plastic-free alternative way of wrapping sandwiches, leftovers and cakes to keep them fresh. If cared for, the wraps will last a year and are fully compostable. They look much prettier than clingfilm too.

💚Reusable Silicone Lids are another great option – From covering bowls of leftovers, cans, jars and half cut fruit like melon or even your half cut onion.

6. Shampoo/conditioner bars vs Plastic shampoo bottles

These solid bars are more lightweight and compact than their bottled counterparts, so they require less space during transport relative to the same amount of washes with liquid shampoo. Roughly ten to fifteen transport trucks of liquid shampoo would be needed for one transport truck of solid shampoo bars to get the same number of washes! This is because the main ingredient in liquid shampoo is water.

Most shampoo bars have a far higher concentration of ingredients than their shampoo counterparts. This means that you need to use less of a shampoo bar to get the same results. So, even though a shampoo bar looks small, it lasts a very long time. And a solid bar of shampoo doesn’t need to come in a plastic container. In fact, most shampoo bars don’t come with any packaging at all. So, by using shampoo bars, you can cut down on your plastic usage and help the environment .

An additional benefit if you like to travel is that as shampoo bars are solid, they can go in your hand luggage without any arguments from border security. Carrying a shampoo bar in your luggage also means that you can save space, travel lighter, and you won’t get to your hotel and find all your clothes soaking wet because your shampoo has leaked all over them!

We have a wide selection of shampoo, conditioner and soap bars in a multitude of scents to suit all preferences.

7. Dish wash bars vs Plastic washing up liquid bottles

Unlike ordinary dishwashing detergent and other cleaners that are packaged in big plastic bottles, most soap bars come in recycled or recyclable paper packaging. Like most soaps, they have a great shelf life, so if they are stored properly they will last you a very long time. A single soap bar can also last for more washes than liquid soap, as you can easily pour out too much every time you do the dishes.

Our Washing-up Soap Bars are powered by organic plant-based ingredients that are tough on grease yet gentle to your hands. So mild the rinse water can be used on your plants!

We have original or lemon scent.

8. Safety Razor vs Disposable razor

Unfortunately as the metal blades are embedded in plastic, billions of plastic razors and cartridges are thrown away every year. Switching to safety razors are a great way for plastic-free shaving. Safety razors use one single blade made from stainless steel, which is easy recyclable. You’ll likely also find that you’re able to achieve a closer, smoother shave without the razor burn and irritation that modern razors can cause.

If you’re a regular shaver, then this switch will save you money too! Disposable razors and blades can be incredibly pricey, while new and vintage safety razors are standardised and have used the same style of blades for years. You can get replacement blades which are high quality and inexpensive. With proper care, the blades can last a good while, while the handle should last a lifetime.

9. Reusable straws vs plastic straws

Plastic straws generally can’t be recycled, so straws have to be sent to landfill, where they take a long time to degrade, can leach chemicals like BPA, break down into microplastics, and can be ingested by wildlife. In addition, plastic straws tend to fall amongst the top littered items in the world. There are however several alternatives:

Stainless Steel Straws are washable, and much more durable. They are BPA free and unlike plastic will not interact with and leak chemicals into the drink you are consuming.

Bamboo Drinking Straws can be reused hundreds of times and can be composted at the end of their life cycle. Our bamboo straws are an eco-friendly and sustainable solution to plastic, made without the need for any harmful pesticides or chemicals. The entire process is safe, non-toxic and completely organic. Each straw is 100% organic, handmade and biodegradable.

Silicone Straws tend to be light and durable, made from 100% Pure Food-Grade FDA/LFGB certified Silicone, they come with a lifetime guarantee from ecoLiving!

10. Bamboo cotton buds vs Plastic cotton buds

If you are a plastic cotton bud user then why not switch to bamboo? Our Bamboo Cotton Buds are 100% biodegradable. Plastic cotton buds are often found on the beach or in our oceans, whereas bamboo an be disposed of by simply throwing them into your organic waste or compost. It is also a sustainable product, it needs no pesticides or fertiliser to grow and it’s a super fast growing grass that is more efficient at taking CO2 from the air and producing more oxygen than trees.

Posted on Leave a comment

Sustainable Ideas for Bump, Birth & Baby

So as some of you may know I am currently expecting baby #3 and as I start to think about what I want for my birth this time around and gather together all our newborn bits and bobs from the loft it got me thinking about sustainable choices for birth and beyond.

My first baby was a typical collection of the disposable and plastic norm (albeit slightly pared down). We started our low waste living journey when she was 6months old so for my second pregnancy and birth I incorporated more sustainable choices (reusable pads for me, reusable nappies for baby, vegan nipple balm, sulphate free soaps for baby etc) Now another baby is imminent I wanted to look in to what more I can do this time round to go a bit further.

So here’s my personal product recomendations and ideas for packing a more eco friendly birth bag and making more conscious purchasing choices for things you want/need in pregnancy and those newborn days. Even if you just get one idea or want to try one suggestion out – remember no matter how small, your effort is making a difference, to you, your baby and to the planet.

Be sure to check out the shop for our featured products.

Baby Butter

A creamy blend of soothing lavender and chamomile, with nourishing shea and coconut oil, this gentle butter melts into your baby’s skin, encouraging a calm and restful night’s sleep while healing and protecting from skin irritants and common baby rashes.

Reusable drinks bottle

Its super important to remain hydrated while pregnant and while in labour so caring a water bottle around with you can help make sure you keep up that water intake. And if you’re breastfeeding baby then you’re gonna be thirsty, so great to have a drink in reach at all times! Reusable bottles are great for around the house as well as out and about, where you can top them up at free refill stations.

Vegan Lip Balm

Very dry lips can be common in labour, especially if you are using gas and air. Keep them moisturised with a nourishing lip balm. In an easy to pop in your bag tube – this natural lip balm is rich in nourishing and organic ingredients; jojoba oil, illipe and mango butter to smooth and soothe and myrica wax seals in the moisture and offers that protective layer.

Reusable Straws

It can be easier to drink with a straw while in labour as you have hands free drinking – your birth partner can simply hold it out to you to drink from.

However, plastic straws generally can’t be recycled, so straws have to be sent to landfill, where they take a long time to degrade, can leach chemicals like BPA, break down into microplastics, and can be ingested by wildlife. There are however alternatives:

Bamboo Drinking Straws can be reused hundreds of times and can be composted at the end of their life cycle. Our bamboo straws are an eco-friendly and sustainable solution to plastic, made without the need for any harmful pesticides or chemicals. The entire process is safe, non-toxic and completely organic. Each straw is 100% organic, handmade and biodegradable.

Silicone Straws tend to be light and durable, made from 100% Pure Food-Grade FDA/LFGB certified Silicone.

colourful smoothie straws close up

Shampoo/Conditioner/Soap bars

Let’s face it birth can be messy, there’s literal blood,sweat and tears! Plus throw in some milk, amniotic fluid and maybe some newborn poo aswell. That post birth shower is definitely well earned! Instead of using space in your bag for your usual bottles which are often 500ml plus, or having to resort to plastic travel miniatures why not opt for a travel tin of shampoo and soap bars. With the added bonus that they won’t leak in your bag! I would also recommend a travel kit for an easy grab and go solution!

Maternity/Nursing Clothes

Opting for second-hand maternity clothes is both financially beneficial and eco-friendly. Charity shops, facebook selling groups, local swap meets, nearly new sales, and hand me downs from friends and family are great options to get clothes that you’ll only need for a few months. Then when not needed anymore you can sell on local groups or donate to charity. I also found that I personally couldn’t be bothered with most nursing friendly tops and just opted for a vest top with a normal top over the top for a discreet feed and now I just wear my normal clothes and feed regardless.

If you do purchase new, look for clothes that are made of sustainable materials, so they have less impact on the planet, and also usually last longer as well. This includes bamboo, hemp and organic cotton. GOTS certified organic clothing will be very kind on your skin and is super breathable if you’re pregnant over summer (I’m now doing this the third time so trust me on this!) . Because they are very durable and quality garments, there is usually plenty of life left in them once they’re no longer needed so you can sell them on or donate them.This keeps items away from landfill and extends their life – it also means one less garment being made and the impact of the production that goes with that.

Birth Accessories

Borrowing or passing on goods from friends/family is a great way to get items you need without adding to demand or sending anything to landfill. See if a friend or relative has a birthing/yoga ball, tens machine etc before buying. I bought a tens machine for my first birth, had it on five minutes and really didn’t get in with it so it was a wasted purchase really. You could borrow one and just buy some new pads.

Scar & Stretch Mark Lotion

If your newly acquired tiger stripes or C-Section scar are bothering you or you feel they are in need of some nourishment, this lotion is a great option. It contains a range of fruit extracts and essential oils that work in a number of ways to soften and reduce scar tissue and stretch marks.

Rich in vitamin C, lemon essential oils function as an immune system booster is vital to help skin repair and regeneration. Lemon stimulates the white blood cells, increasing the body’s ability to produce healthy, new skin cells that will eventually cover over the old, dead skin cells in a scar. Coconut oil is effective at decreasing the appearance of stretch marks, by accelerating the skins recovery following damage. Grapeseed Extract is great for for boosting wound healing! When applied during pregnancy grapeseed extract prevents the appearance and formation of stretch marks by regenerating any damaged blood vessels and improving connectivity skin collagen and tissue.

Nipple balm

Breastfeeding doesn’t always come easy for everyone, and it can have its moments in the first few days/weeks while you and baby figure out what you’re doing (remember you’re both learning) If you have some soreness or cracking, or just want a nourishing balm then this one is great! And its lanolin free and vegan!

(It shouldn’t be painful though so if you’re experiencing pain or are struggling then please reach out to a IBCLC – a certified lactation consultant)

Breast pads

I absolutely hated using disposable plasticky pads to catch milky leaks with my eldest. When my son was born my low waste living journey had already begun and I opted for washable reusable pads and fell in love! SO much more comfortable and no rustling noises! Feeding a baby and a toddler and having an oversupply meant lots of leaks and they were never defeated and the rate I needed them I felt much better about them going in the washing machine to be used again, as opposed to landfill forever.

I would also highly recommend looking in to reusable cloth pads or pants instead of disposable maternity towels as i just found the cotton of reusables so much more comfortable than itchy plastic. Personally, I found I could use regular menstrual pads and didn’t need special postpartum ones, but you can get a wide variety of shapes/lengths and for different flow types, night, postpartum, etc.

Muslins

These super soft and large organic cotton muslin cloths are perfect for all those situations on the go, in the house where you need to clean up your baby without any irritation.

Cloth Wipes

Most baby wipes are made of non-biodegradable materials and obviously can only be used once. They are a massive source of waste at landfill and also despite not being flushable (even the “flushable” and “biodegradable” varieties are not truly suitable to be flushed) they often end up clogging up our sewers and waterways.

Cloth wipes are more cost-effective, create less waste in the landfill, and help you avoid the use of irritating soaps and chemicals on your baby’s delicate bottom.

Cleaning up with cloth is as simple as just add water and wipe, though many people use homemade wipe solutions and you can purchase store-bought solutions if you prefer. You can keep them in special wipe boxes, or just use wet bags for on the go. They are available in a variety of materials, cotton is the usual go to or for luxury feels, you can buy ultra soft minky, velour, or bamboo cloths. We have some classic white bamboo terry wipes, or you could opt for pastel reusable wipes in a handy travel tote.

Cloth Nappies

Get eco-friendly by opting for washable cloth nappies instead of disposable nappies. Disposable nappies are made of synthetic materials, filled with chemicals, so besides being non-biodegradable, they can be harmful to your child’s tender skin. And obviously, you can only use them once.

A cloth nappy is a reusable nappy, usually made from cotton or other natural materials. The picture that might come to your mind when we hear the term are those squares of cotton that our mothers used. Now I’m not talking about terries or the endless soaking and boiling of previous years. Modern cloth nappies are easy to clean, dry pretty fast, have poppers or velcro (no fiddly or sticky pins) and come in a multitude of prints and designs. As far as cleaning goes, nappies and many wraps just go in the wash at 40 or 60. No need to soak or to boil wash.

It can sound surprising that cloth nappies are more cost effective than disposables because they can call for a hefty initial investment (though you could always purchase preloved from selling sites to save money). But in the longer run, they turn out to be less expensive than disposables, even better if you can reuse for more than one child, and you can always sell on afterwards.

Most estimates of how much you will spend on disposable nappies are around £850-£1,100 per child. If you choose to use a nappy disposal system, it adds in the region of £200; otherwise you’ll need to add the cost of nappy bags.

However, we paid just shy of £300 for our daughters nappies, they were mostly brand new and are a popular and fairly top end quality brand, we also bought additional spare inserts. She has been using them for 3 years and our son has been sharing for the last 18 months. We have since bought a few more nappies (mostly preloved – some were a bargain at £1 each!) so we can have longer between washing since we have two little ones in cloth. If they were in disposables that could have been over 10,000 nappies between them so far. That’s a lot of plastic off to landfill, not to mention a lot of money. And while our daughter has started potty training and wont be using nappies much longer, our son will be wearing them for around another year, and soon baby 3 will be using them too, and after he’s done with them we can sell them on and get some money back. Yes you have the costs of washing but if you wash your nappies two or three times a week at 60 degrees, and take into account the cost of electricity, water and detergent, then the grand total is about £1 a week, or about £130 over two and a half years.

So disposables could’ve cost us £3000 for our 3 children, instead of the £400 or so we’ve spent on cloth nappies and maybe £260 on washing, as we do wash ours more than twice a week as we have two in cloth. That’s a saving of up to £2340, and we still have the potential to make some money back when they sell on. If we had opted for other brands or for muslins/flats or got them all preloved then there could have been even more savings as those would have a cheaper outlay.

According to WRAP, the UK adds 3 billion disposable nappies to landfill every year, so making the switch to reusables can really make a difference. They are not as hard as you think and most local councils offer a nappy voucher incentive when you buy your first set of nappies.

Posted on Leave a comment

Conscious Christmas Gift Guide

With the ‘C’ word drawing ever closer, we’ve rounded up our pick of our eco-friendly offerings to help you shop small and buy sustainably this Christmas. There’s something for everyone, from newborn up, and to cover all budgets.

Of course this is just gifts you can purchase from us at The Path Less Wasteful and whilst we’d love you to choose us to help get your sustainable Christmas sorted, even if you decide to get your gifts elsewhere we hope this list can give you a bit of inspiration for this years present picks.

Remember all of these products are:

💚Plastic free

💚Vegan friendly

💚Cruelty free

💚Eco-friendly

💚Sustainably made

💚Ethically sourced

For the Little Ones:

These rompers are thick, warm, breathable and provide comfortability for everything from playing, sleeping and out during the day. 100% organic cotton, they are available in essential romper style and this knitted footsy style.

Perfect for pre-schoolers and imaginative play, stacking rainbows offer multiple uses and endless possibilities for open-ended play. You can stack them, balance them on top of each other, they could be bridges or tunnels for small cars – we are sure you will come up with plenty more ideas. The wood used is upcycled and sustainably sourced and painted with non-toxic paints.

Available in original or large size and traditional rainbow, contemporary or pastel colours.

Make feeding time a little easier with these bamboo plates, bowls and spoons.

Watch them engage in mealtime in a whole new way whilst knowing their bowl is ethically made, food-safe certified and free from chemicals.

Another perk of using bamboo for your baby weaning set is it’s lasting-power, this set will grow with your baby as they transition from infant to toddler, and can be used across all siblings and even into different generations.

This wooden teether ring and bird teether set is the perfect baby gift. The set includes a wooden teething ring and a bird shaped teething toy. They are the perfect size for baby to hold and made from natural untreated wood so safe for baby to chew. The teethers have a smooth finish so are comfortable against baby’s skin. Wooden teething toys are a natural, BPA free and eco friendly baby toy which can help with the discomfort of teething as well as improving hand eye co-ordination.

Handcrafted so no pair is the same. Eco-friendly cotton with a non-slip vegan leather suede sole. These perfect little baby loafers will compliment any outfit, aid with those first steps and keep tootsies warm as feet dangle from the pram. Available in a variety of designs.

For the Coffee Drinkers:

High quality double-walled stainless steel construction to keep their drink the perfect temperature. The stainless steel construct also ensures the long-lasting and freshest flavour of the drink with no metallic after taste. Lightweight and durable, perfect for use at home, in a favourite coffee shop or on the go. The perfect size to carry around and fits under all coffee machines. The soft matt finish and compact shape for easy gripping will mean that they won’t want to put it down. Available in a variety of colours.

Made from the highest quality borosilicate glass, these cups are designed to replicate the coffee shop drinking experience and unlike plastic or bamboo will not taint the flavour of the drink. Available in a variety of colours/sizes.

A truly sustainable travel cup. Huski Home recycles rice husks to create a durable, environmentally friendly, non-toxic material. These non-toxic, melamine, BPA and silicone-free travel cups feature a leak-proof flip lid and a non-slip base.


Great for hot or iced beverages on the go, they are twin walled to keep drinks warmer for longer without burning hands and insulated to keep hot drinks at an optimum temperature for up to 90 minutes. Available in a variety of colours/sizes.

reuseable coffee cup

Lightweight, durable and fits perfectly under a coffee machine. Ideal for use at home, in a favourite coffee shop or on the go. The double walled reusable cups are designed with both style and comfort in mind. A spill-proof resealable lid combined with a water tight silicone seal to prevent any unwanted leaks. Available in a variety of colours.

For the Make Up Artists:

The Flawless brushes deliver a perfect makeup look every time. All of the brushes are luxurious and vegan, containing no animal hair. The hand finished synthetic fibres are ultra soft yet firm enough to effortlessly apply your makeup with a flawless finish.

Unlike animal hair, synthetic fibres are non-porous, allowing more of your makeup to be applied to your skin rather than being absorbed into the hairs, causing a build up of product and bacteria. This enables less wastage of makeup and is much healthier for the skin.

Each brush boasts a sustainably sourced bamboo handle. Bamboo is a strong grass which is harvested and used in the beauty industry for its anti-bacterial properties. Due to being a natural material each brush handle will be unique.

This cotton canvas bag measures 15cm high by 20cm wide, fully lined, perfect for makeup or travel cosmetics.

The world’s first plastic-free Micellar Water. Carefully formulated to with aloe vera and lavender which contain anti-inflammatory properties to soothe, heal and hydrate the skin. Aloe Vera is also an effective impurity and makeup remover, leaving the skin feeling fresh, clean and smooth.

For the Candle Lovers:

This beautiful ‘https://thepathlesswasteful.co.uk/product/handmade-soy-candle-hygge/Hygge Rituals’ soy candles is handmade, from Lovaine’s little house in West-Wales. These candles are paraben free, vegan, free from animal testing and made using eco wicks. They come in large 345ml eco friendly, glass jars, which have a burn time of 60+ hours.

They are made with love at every stage, from the design to fragrances, to pouring, labelling, packing and posting.

A variety of scents and message labels available.

A trio of soy candle tins hand poured in West-Wales.

  • Wake up and start the day with the beautiful ‘Rise’ bergamot & orange soy candle.
  • Find calm with the ‘Reset’ coconut & vanilla soy candle
  • Relax and end the day with the ‘Rest’ lavender & geranium soy candle

These candles are paraben free, vegan friendly, made with eco wicks and free from animal testing. The 100ml travel tins have a burn time of 15+ hours each.

These handmade wax melts have excellent scent through and their lovely character is a guarantee for making a home feel even more cozy.

  • 100% natural alternative to paraffin and soy wax
  •  Hand-poured, pure, ethically sourced coconut-rapeseed wax candle
  •  Sprinkled with natural botanicals
  •  Natural, ethically sourced fragrance oils that are FREE from CMR’s, Phthalates, Parabens, Silicone and PEG.
  •  Up to 6 hours burn time per melt
  • Eco-friendly packaging, with biodegradable waxed paper bags

Available in a choice of scents.

These hand-poured, pure, organic, ethically sourced coconut-rapeseed wax candles come in a beautiful hand-made, repurposable ceramic container and have an organic cotton wick. Natural, ethically sourced fragrance oils that are FREE from CMR’s, Phthalates, Parabens, Silicone and PEG. Packaged in a cloth gift bag.

Choice of scents available.

Individually wrapped for freshness, these 20ml coconut-rapeseed wax candles make up a pack of 8, packaged in fully recyclable gift wrap, with a handmade ceramic tag. Each tea-light is hand-poured, organic, ethically sourced and provides 6 hours burn time. Natural, ethically sourced fragrance oils that are FREE from CMR’s, Phthalates, Parabens, Silicone and PEG. They are entirely handmade and feature an organic cotton wick.

Choice of scents available.

For the Travelling Ones:

bamboo travel cutlery

The reusable bamboo cutlery set is the perfect plastic free alternative for eating on the go! These portable travel utensils are BPA free and handmade from a single piece of organic bamboo without the need for any harmful fertilisers, pesticide or glues.

It’s small enough to take in a bag wherever you go; the perfect zero waste swap! This bamboo travel cutlery set is everything needed for a waste-free and guilt free lifestyle. Jungle Culture have made it easy to carry eco utensils & include a hessian travel pouch in order to conveniently store this portable bamboo cutlery set when not in use.

bamboo straws

Individually hand crafted and harvested by local artisans at a small, family-run farm in rural Vietnam. These reusable bamboo straws are an eco-friendly and sustainable solution to plastic, made without the need for any harmful pesticides or chemicals. The entire process is safe, non-toxic and completely organic. Each straw is 100% organic, handmade and biodegradable. Jungle straws can be reused hundreds of times and are engraved with the Jungle Culture logo. They come in a naturally made soft hessian pouch (Wheat Coloured)

A beautifully rich, 100% natural and completely vegan cleansing and moisturising balm for face, body and hair. Packed with nourishing cocoa butter and lashings of vitamin E and essential oils, the Miracle Worker balm provides deep hydration to tired skin and hair.

The Miracle Worker balm is highly versatile. It can be used as a cleanser, by applying a small amount to the face and massaging in a circular motions to lift grime and pollutants from the skin, before wiping away with a muslin cloth or flannel soaked in warm water. Breathing in the relaxing scent of lavender, eucalyptus and rosemary for deep relaxation in the evening. It can also be used as a body moisturiser, but massaging a small amount into areas of dry skin, such as the hands, heels, elbows and knees.

Finally, Miracle Worker can be used in very small amounts as a hair wax to tame unruly flyaways (a little goes a long way!) or as a conditioning treatment by lightly massaging the balm into wet ends, relaxing for 5 minutes and then rinsing with warm water.

Its multi uses make it the perfect travelling companion, cutting down on waste, products needed and luggage space!

Ideal to pop in a bag, desk drawer or take away on holiday, this on the go kit provides all the products needed to freshen up and be ready for the day wherever.

Choice of kit – Fresh or Floral

For the Bearded Ones:

A quality moisturizing beard oil for the most adventurous of beard owners. Formulated with only natural ingredients, there are no toxins or harmful chemicals – just 100% natural, healthy hold.

Choice of Scents.

A 100% natural, plastic-free beard shampoo and shave bar for naturally rugged faces. This handmade, vegan bar creates a smooth rich lather, which nourishes and softens beards and makes for a soothing shaving lather. Perfect for a quick shave in the shower or bath, or a longer, luxurious shave with a sink full of steaming hot water.

A great stocking filler gift for the bearded beauty in your life.

The paper packaging is secured with biodegradable clear stickers. No plastic. No palm oil. No sulphates. No triclosan. No phthalate. No cruelty. No worries.

For the Four Legged Ones:

This is perfect to keep your little furry friend happy. These soothing and nourishing dog nose balms are all-natural, vegan, and cruelty-free. Made to gently nourish and soothe those little doggy noses.

For The Home:

These hand-carved eco-friendly coconut wood cooking and serving utensils are made from coconut trees that no longer bear fruit. By utilising this material that would otherwise be discarded, it helps to reduce unnecessary waste. This set of coconut wood utensils are perfect for everyday cooking use, serving meals, and more!

These hand-carved eco-friendly coconut wood soap dishes are made from coconut trees that no longer bear fruit. By utilising this material that would otherwise be discarded, it helps to reduce unnecessary waste. Available in Leaf, Turtle or Heart design.

food wrap

Reusable Vegan Waxys Food Wraps are made from organic Indian cotton printed with unique designs in the UK and coated with vegan-friendly wax by Dundee specialists Halley Stevensons. Unlike beeswax wraps Waxyz don’t have any smell or sticky residue and are perfect for wrapping sandwiches, bread and leftovers.

Waxyz designs are bright, colourful and gender-neutral. We have medium or large size and multipacks. Variety of colours/designs available.

Practical and stylish, these knitted organic cotton dish cloths make a useful and attractive addition to any kitchen. Highly absorbent and durable, these dish clothes are super versatile, use it for cleaning counter tops, doing the dishes, or even as a mini hand towel. Choice of colours.

For Those Who Deserve Pampering:

The Bathtime Pamper Bundle is just what is needed for a relax and recharge. Luxurious, vegan and ecofriendly – for a indulgent but conscious pamper & relax time. It makes a brilliant gift to someone who needs a little treat. Includes an organic cotton bath pouf, a handmade soap bar, a bath soak, and a pack of 3 bath bombs.

Or if you want to gift the ultimate pamper session then choose our Ultimate Pamper Bundle for the soap bar and the bath soak and bombs, with the addition of a handmade body scrub and a selection of coconut tea lights to really set the mood!

Scence’s collection of body and hand balms use wonderful mango butter, organic borage, jojoba and calendula oils for their healing and replenishing qualities. Essential oils offer protection and  aromatherapeutic benefits and rice bran wax gives their balms firmness and grip, sealing in the goodness and moisture-giving properties of the natural oils.

These plastic-free body moisturisers can be used daily, and are especially good after a shower or bath.

Softening and hydrating, the nourishing hand moisturiser is packed with moisture rich butters and oils. Leaving your hands and nails feeling soothed and cared for without leaving a greasy residue.

Variety of scents and balms available.

bath bomb

These mess-free essential oil bath bombs will help to create the ultimate relaxing experience. These bath bombs are packed full of Epsom salts, essential oils and clay to help them enjoy their bath to the fullest.

Each pack contains 3 individual hand-pressed bath bombs. These are packaged in a paper bag with a paper sticker, which can be recycled.

coffee body scrub

This scrub is hand blended in The Natural Spa’s Devon workshop, with moisturising Apricot oil and essential oils so you can gift a real spa at home experience.

The scrub gently buffs away and dry/rough skin and leave skin feeling moisturised and refreshed. Choice of scrubs available.

This zero-waste plastic-free, solid body lotion bar is made with pure cocoa butter to moisturise and regenerate tired or dry skin. This bar can be used anywhere you would normally use a liquid lotion – as a face cream, a stretch mark cream or even as a massage oil.

We hope we’ve given you some good ideas to get started on your Christmas shopping, and we’d love if you wanted to head over to our shop and give the planet some love when buying for your loved ones this year!

Posted on Leave a comment

Plastic-Free Picnics

Now that the summer weather has officially arrived and restrictions are easing, we’ve started thinking about going out more, or you know, going out at all! (I think my son was surprised that there are more than 5 people in the world!) After over a year in shielding we had to have a good think what we would need to go out and about now we have two small people in tow, if we wanted to go to the beach or for a picnic.

So here’s our tips & ideas for a sustainable summer, including my Top 10 Sustainable Swaps & Product Recommendations.

Tips & Ideas for Plastic Free Picnicking

  • Make your own dips & salads, rather than buying pre-prepared ones in plastic packaging from the supermarket. A great homemade hummus recipe is this one from The Pesky Vegan. You could even have a go at making your own crackers or pittas to dip in your homemade sides.
  • If you’re having soft drinks, choose options from cans or glass bottles, rather than plastic bottles, we love cordials as you can stretch them so much further by diluting with water. If you want to you could give making your own cordial a go (extra hippie points if you forage your own elderflowers 😉 – seriously though foraging is great fun, but only forage for small amounts from areas with plentiful supply and only if you are 100% certain of what the item is and that it’s edible. Here’s two great articles on foraging for beginners from National Geographic and BBC Good Food.)
  • You can get some great snacks for on the go from your local zero waste shop or refill store, popping kernels for making your own popcorn, or choose from a selection of nuts and snacks like spiced chickpeas, banana chips, etc. You could also use their assortments of nuts and dried fruits to make your own custom trail mix.
  • Avoid ice in bags from the supermarket, by making your own at home in silicone ice cube trays (we have tons of these from making and freezing portions of baby food for when our daughter was weaning), or freeze bottles of water use a coolers in your picnic bag, they’ll keep your picnic nice and chilled and your drink will have melted en route and be lovely and cool. You could also try frozen grapes which will cool drinks and make a great snack when you’ve finished.

Top 10 Sustainable Summer Ready Swaps

1.Reusable Straws:

Plastic straws generally can’t be recycled, so straws have to be sent to landfill, where they take a long time to degrade, can leach chemicals like BPA, break down into microplastics, and can be ingested by wildlife. There are however several alternatives:

Stainless Steel Straws are washable, and much more durable. They are BPA free and unlike plastic will not interact with and leak chemicals into the drink you are consuming.

Bamboo Drinking Straws can be reused hundreds of times and can be composted at the end of their life cycle. Our bamboo straws are an eco-friendly and sustainable solution to plastic, made without the need for any harmful pesticides or chemicals.

Silicone Straws tend to be light and durable, these ones are made from 100% Pure Food-Grade FDA/LFGB certified Silicone, they come with a lifetime guarantee from ecoLiving!

2. Travel Cutlery Set:

Avoid the traditional plastic cutlery of picnics past and invest in a reusable travel cutlery set, made from bamboo or metal which you can carry on you for takeaways, work lunches, food on the go etc. They’re stylish as well as sustainable and it stops all that waste of single use plastic going to landfill.

bamboo travel cutlery

3. Reusable Water Bottle:

Instead of endless plastic bottles, opt for a reusable stainless steel or glass bottle. They are durable, and you can find ones that maintain the temperature of the drink inside, so you can have a refreshing drink throughout the day. They’re great for around the house as well as out and about, where you can refill them with water – look out for councils or shops that are part of the refill scheme.

Our Reusable Glass Bottles are made from BPA free and fully recyclable materials and provide a clean and pure drinking experience.

4. Lunch boxes

Picnics and packed lunches are massive sources of plastic waste – from the plastic lunchboxes themselves, to plastic tupperware, ziplock pouches, clingfilm, snack packs and individually wrapped plastic food packaging.

Avoid the plastic lunchboxes and opt for a stainless steel version, or one of our Huski Home rice husk lunchboxes, made using the by-products of the rice industry. Many lunchboxes have sections, so you can do away with the individual tupperware and snack packs and put your own products in loose. If you do want Tupperware you can opt for glass or glass/bamboo combo versions. Or why not store snacks in reused jars, we have snacks in old curry sauce jars that we’ve cleaned and relabelled.

5. Wax Wraps

Similarly you can avoid the clingfilm and plastic packaging by choosing wax wraps for your sandwiches and other homemade goodies.

food wrap

6. Takeaway Cup

Whether you want a hot drink or an iced coffee, a fruity tea or just juice, taking a reusable travel cup with you let’s you ditch the disposable and many have the benefits of being insulated or double walled to keep your drink at the right temperature for longer.

7. Travel Wash Set

A great choice for the holidays we are now allowed on, whether you’re desperate to jet off or you’re choosing a Great British Staycation, maybe even just for long awaited visits to far away friends and family – a travel set is a great option for you to be low waste and avoid all those plastic travel miniatures, without having to take your full bars from home in individual tins.

safety razor

8. Sun Cream in Tins/Refills

Yes this is now an option, some zero waste shops are now able to offer sun cream refills and the majority will likely have aluminium tins of sun cream available. I find the tins are easier to get the sun cream out of rather than faffing with the spray bottles that don’t work unless they’re completely upright.

9. Toothbrush Case

Great for when you’re away from home, bamboo toothbrush cases keep your brush clean and hygienic. We have both adults and children’s toothbrush travel cases in the shop.

10. Reusable Bag

Keep your picnic out of plastic and opt for reusable bags to carry your stuff on trips out or for shopping. Fold up, cotton or net bags are brilliant for stashing on you so you don’t have to pay for plastic bags if you do any impromptu shopping.

This organic cotton bag is a great choice as it folds up small but is spacious and stylish.

Be sure to check out the shop for our featured products that can help with your zero waste needs.

Posted on Leave a comment

7 Ways to Make Soap Bars Last Longer

Now that you’ve swapped over to soap bars, here’s how to get the most out of them.

1. Keep the soap away from water, when not in use.

Nothing will make your soap disintegrate faster than keeping it wet. Water breaks down the consistency of the soap and means you need to replace your soap much more frequently. Try to avoid storing your soap in a place that is constantly in contact with water, like in the direct stream of the shower. We keep ours inside the shower cubicle, but as its a double shower, the shelf that the bars live on is away from the water itself.

2. Let your soap dry properly.

Allowing the bar to air dry and lose its moisture will make a bar of soap harder (and therefore less likely to crumble), so that it lasts longer. The more time your soap spends completely dry, the longer it will last. (This follows on to tip 3…)

3. Always keep your soap in a suitable soap dish

It’s all about the drainage – be it wire rack, bamboo soap dish or a self-draining soap dish- drainage is the most important factor. Soap dishes without drainage keep the moisture there longer and will make it harder for your soap to dry out in between uses. Although some plastic and stainless steel soap dish designs look great, unless they have drainage, they are liable to make your soap soggy. All of our soap dishes have great drainage, so you can be sure they will help keep your bars going that little bit longer. Here’s a selection of them:

4. Store smaller pieces in a soap-saving pouch.

Once your soap bar breaks down into smaller pieces that are difficult to use, put those smaller pieces inside a soap-saving pouch. These small bags will work to contain the pieces for reuse, but they have the added benefit of acting as an exfoliating washcloth that you can use to bath yourself with the soap remnants inside.

5. Use a washcloth/loufah/pouf instead of your hands.

Skin is less able to produce and retain lather from soap than other materials. If you use a washcloth or loofah instead while you are bathing, the whole process will use less soap overall because the washcloth will create more lather and it the suds it creates will go farther than simply using your hands alone. This organic cotton bath pouf lathers up beautifully!

6. Take cooler showers.

Hot water will make your soap bars dissolve more quickly and will require more effort to make lather. A cooler shower will help your bar last longer by allowing it to maintain its shape and consistency for a longer period of time.

7. Cut the bar of soap into smaller pieces.

Smaller bars of soap last longer because you have smaller pieces in use. This means that only the smaller piece gets wet during each shower, so the other pieces can remain dry and stored until you are ready to use them. You could cut your soap bars into halves, or even thirds, so you only use one small piece at a time until it is gone.

Posted on Leave a comment

Simple swaps for a more sustainable 2021

If you’re trying to be a bit greener in 2021, then here’s our top 10 simple swaps to help you live more sustainably:

1. Reusable coffee cups vs Takeaway cups

In the UK we use 7 million disposable coffee cups every day – that’s 2.5 billion every year. And less than 1per cent of these end up being recycled. This is due to the thin plastic lining which makes them difficult to process for recycling. Reusable cups on the other hand, are designed to last for years if cared for properly. Having a reusable coffee cup in your bag or at the office gives quick access to an alternative to the single use cup, our Double Walled Coffee Cups are lightweight and durable.

Paper takeaway cups don’t offer much in the way of insulation, so your drink wont stay hot for long, a reusable cup can keep your drink hotter for longer, and offer some protection to your fingers too! Our Reusable Insulated Coffee Cups have high quality double-walled stainless steel construction to keep your drink the perfect temperature. We also have Glass Coffee Cups, which are designed to replicate your coffee shop drinking experience and unlike plastic or bamboo will not taint the flavour of your drink.

And as well as helping the planet by cutting your plastic usage, there are additional benefits for your wallet too. Many coffee shop chains offer discounts to customers who bring their own cup. If you’re a regular coffee drinker, you could save more than £100 a year. Or if you can make your own at home and take it out with you, you’ll save even more!

2. Reusable water bottle vs Plastic bottles

In 2018, UK use of plastic water bottles increased by more than 7 per cent, according to market research company Zenith. The industry is worth £3.3bn. And this isn’t just bad for the planet and the ocean, where many of these plastic bottles ultimately end up. It’s also bad for us. Plastic bottles contain Bisphenol A (BPA), an endocrine disruptor which has been strongly linked to a host of health problems. BPA enters the human body through exposure to plastics such as bottled drinks. Our Reusable Glass Bottles are made from BPA free and fully recyclable materials and provide a clean and pure drinking experience.

3. Bamboo toothbrush vs Plastic toothbrush

What with the vast majority of toothbrushes being plastic, you’ll end up throwing away a lot of them if you adhere to most manufacturers’ recommendations to replace your toothbrush every three months. In fact, every year over a billion plastic toothbrushes are thrown away worldwide, ending up in landfill, in the sea or washed up on a beach.

Thankfully, there is an alternative available. Bamboo toothbrushes, which are made from more sustainable materials. Once you’re finished with one, you can compost the handle and recycle the bristles.

4. Toothpaste tablets vs Plastic toothpaste tubes

Toothpaste tubes are typically made of non-recyclable plastic and can take around 450 years to decompose. The tubes are made of multiple layers of materials fused together, so breaking them down for recycling is much more complex than for other household items. One alternative is Truthtabs: these tablets are easy to use, simply pop one into your mouth, bite and brush. They foam and clean just like toothpaste but come in fully biodegradable and recyclable packaging.

5. Wax wraps vs Clingfilm

More than 1.2 billion metres, equating to 745,000 miles of cling film is used by households across Britain every year – enough to go around the circumference of the world 30 times over!

Cling film is difficult to recycle, meaning the majority of it ends up in landfill where it takes hundreds of years to degrade and risks leaching chemicals into groundwater. Like plastic bags, cling film that ends up in the sea is easily confused for jellyfish by marine animals and chokes turtles and other creatures that feed on them.

Reusable Vegan Wax Wraps are a plastic-free alternative way of wrapping sandwiches, leftovers, cheese and cakes to keep them fresh. If cared for, the wraps will last a year and are fully compostable. They look much prettier than clingfilm too.

6. Shampoo/conditioner bars vs Plastic shampoo bottles

These solid bars are more lightweight and compact than their bottled counterparts, so they require less space during transport relative to the same amount of washes with liquid shampoo. Roughly ten to fifteen transport trucks of liquid shampoo would be needed for one transport truck of solid shampoo bars to get the same number of washes! This is because the main ingredient in liquid shampoo is water.

Most shampoo bars have a far higher concentration of ingredients than their shampoo counterparts. This means that you need to use less of a shampoo bar to get the same results. So, even though a shampoo bar looks small, it lasts a very long time. And a solid bar of shampoo doesn’t need to come in a plastic container. In fact, most shampoo bars don’t come with any packaging at all. So, by using shampoo bars, you can cut down on your plastic usage and help the environment .

An additional benefit if you like to travel is that as shampoo bars are solid, they can go in your hand luggage without any arguments from border security. Carrying a shampoo bar in your luggage also means that you can save space, travel lighter, and you won’t get to your hotel and find all your clothes soaking wet because your shampoo has leaked all over them!

We are currently eagerly awaiting a delivery of shampoo, conditioner and soap bars, which will be added to the shop as soon as they arrive!

7. Dish wash bars vs Plastic washing up liquid bottles

Back in the day one bar of soap was enough to do everything, from dishwashing, laundry and even cleaning your bathroom. 

Unlike ordinary dishwashing detergent and other cleaners that are packaged in big plastic bottles, most soap bars come in recycled or recyclable paper packaging. Like most soaps, they have a great shelf life, so if they are stored properly they will last you a very long time. A single soap bar can also last for more washes than liquid soap, as you can easily pour out too much every time you do the dishes.

Our Washing-up Soap Bars are powered by organic plant-based ingredients that are tough on grease yet gentle to your hands. So mild the rinse water can be used on your plants!

8. Safety Razor vs Disposable razor

Unfortunately as the metal blades are embedded in plastic, billions of plastic razors and cartridges are thrown away every year. Switching to safety razors are a great way for plastic-free shaving. Safety razors use one single blade made from stainless steel, which is easy recyclable. You’ll likely also find that you’re able to achieve a closer, smoother shave without the razor burn and irritation that modern razors can cause.

If you’re a regular shaver, then this switch will save you money too! Disposable razors and blades can be incredibly pricey, while new and vintage safety razors are standardised and have used the same style of blades for years. You can get replacement blades which are high quality and inexpensive. With proper care, the blades can last a good while, while the handle should last a lifetime.

9. Reusable straws vs plastic straws

Plastic straws generally can’t be recycled, so straws have to be sent to landfill, where they take a long time to degrade, can leach chemicals like BPA, break down into microplastics, and can be ingested by wildlife. In addition, plastic straws tend to fall amongst the top littered items in the world. There are however several alternatives:

Stainless Steel Straws are washable, and much more durable. They are BPA free and unlike plastic will not interact with and leak chemicals into the drink you are consuming.

Bamboo Drinking Straws can be reused hundreds of times and can be composted at the end of their life cycle. Our bamboo straws are an eco-friendly and sustainable solution to plastic, made without the need for any harmful pesticides or chemicals. The entire process is safe, non-toxic and completely organic. Each straw is 100% organic, handmade and biodegradable.

Silicone Straws tend to be light and durable, made from 100% Pure Food-Grade FDA/LFGB certified Silicone, they come with a lifetime guarantee from ecoLiving!

10. Bamboo cotton buds vs Plastic cotton buds

If you are a plastic cotton bud user then why not switch to bamboo? Our Bamboo Cotton Buds are 100% biodegradable. Plastic cotton buds are often found on the beach or in our oceans, whereas bamboo an be disposed of by simply throwing them into your organic waste or compost. It is also a sustainable product, it needs no pesticides or fertiliser to grow and it’s a super fast growing grass that is more efficient at taking CO2 from the air and producing more oxygen than trees.