Tips to minimize waste and plastic use

Recycling and minimizing waste/plastic use are two things which i think almost everyone can do – as long as they try. The problem is that many think it is an inconvenience or takes too much time…. i.e, i know friends who don’t recycle because they have to talk 5 minutes with all the recycling to get to the recycling stations and that takes too much time for them. But then there are those who don’t even recycle or throw food into the compost despite the recycling station being in their own apartment building – that just baffles me!

I am not perfect when it comes to recycling or minimizing my plastic use, infact the past few weeks i haven’t been so amazing at it. I have done spontaneous food shops and have had to buy plastic bags, i’ve taken plastic bags for loose fruit and veggies, bought foods that have a little too much plastic wrapping than is necessary, and haven’t 100% recycled either.

But from now on i am going to keep an extra shopping bag in my school bag incase i need to do a spontaneous shop, also am going to buy some reusable fruit/veggie bags which i saw my local store selling and 99.9% of the time recycle!

But then i began thinking about other items i use and how to minimize waste in those areas…..

Razor blades. It is cheaper to buy a pack of 10 cheap razors which last 1-3 shave times and then you throw it away. That is alot of waste, not to mention i can’t imagine it is good to have so many razor blades end up in rubbish piles.  So the best thing is to buy a razor blade where you can just change the blade instead of having to use a new razor each time. Of course, you still need to throw away the blade but i find that the more expensive ones often last longer anyway!

And the same goes for toothbrushes…. buying an electric toothbrush is both better for your teeth and you only need to buy the new brush piece, not the whole new tooth brush. Not to mention all the packaging that goes along with buying a new toothbrush every few weeks. Note, there is also Humble toothbrush which is environmentally friendly – so if you don’t want an electric toothbrush, then Humble is a good idea 🙂

Bring your own thermos with you if you are out and about. It both saves money if you fill it with your own coffee/tea, but if you do decide to get take out you can just ask them to fill the thermos and skip the to-go cup. (I don’t know if all places allow this though, but i know some places actually give you a little price reduction if you have your own thermos/cup with your if you are buying a to-go coffee!)

It is better to buy different condiments or foods in glass jars – easier to recycle and better for the environment. So if you can get example mayonnaise, mustard, ketchup or any other foods in glass jars, do that instead! And then don’t forget to recycle.

If there is a food you eat alot of – buy it in bulk. Not only is it cheaper, but saves the amount of packaging used!

Buying something online? Ask friends or family if they want to buy something from that site as well…. maybe you can share the shipping price as well as limits the amount of transportation needed. (Of course, no need for people to buy things unnecssarily, but if they do need or want something it is a good time to buy at the same time! And now a days with Swish one people can just transfer the money quickly if the other person buys!)

Buy a reusable baking sheet – this is something i have been meaning to buy for a while but never gotten around to it. Imagine how much baking paper or aluminium foil you could save! I don’t know how long they last, but longer than once or twice with normal baking paper anyway!


I hope this gave you some ideas on how to minimize plastic and waste! They aren’t huge changes even if some of them may be a little investment at first, but over time you can change your toothbrush/razorblade/parchment paper to a more environmentally friendly option! (There might be even better options, but i haven’t done any research on that!)

I am going to try post more about ways to help the environment and minimize plastic use, 1) because it is motivating for myself and reminds me to keep at it and 2) more varied and information on here and 3) i think everyone should try to make these differences and changes, because even if you can’t go vegan you can still try to minimize waste and plastic use! 🙂

Also, you can read my part 1 about how to minimize plastic use, HERE and this post: If you can’t go vegan – other ways to help the animals and the planet


9 Comments Add yours

  1. Lily says:

    I’m just so angry today, because even though I brought my own bag today to the market, the chasier had already wrapped the bananas!in a plastic bag, before I could tell her not to do that… And they just soo unnecessarily wrap every type of fresh produce in a different plastic bag, then they give you an even bigger for carrying all of them in one. Such a waste of plastic and so bad for the enviroment :/


  2. fivebeansoup says:

    By reusable baking sheet I am thinking you mean a silicon mat to replace baking parchment? If so then I can tell you I have had my mats for almost 10 years and going strong.


    1. Oh yes, that is what i meant – a silicon mat! And that is amazing, i definitely need to invest in one or two of those. I use far too much aluminium foil and parchment paper which isn’t good!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Lily says:

    Oh, and update: I heard that McDonalds announced that they’ll go 100% recyclable, which is really good as they ve already done so much damage to the enviroment with tons of packages and a large contribution to animal farming.


    1. Oh that is amazing! Atleast it is one step froward and they have even made a vegan burger which is something. I don’t personally want to promte mcdonalds so i don’t eat there, but i can atleast be happy that they are trying in someway!!


  4. caroljoanne1969 says:

    I use an electric razor rather than the disposable blades and the one I`ve got has lasted for several years so far. I find it a lot easier to use too, no risk of cutting and no “shaver burn” 🙂
    Here they are on about increasing the price of a takeaway coffee by 25p to pay for better recycling facilities for the cups as currently they are not able to recycle them at all. they tried the “bring your own cup” but people didn’t go for it that much so if it means paying extra and stopping all the cups going to landfill that has to be a good thing.
    Also they are apparently going to stop packaging fruit and veg in plastic bags – the idea being that you buy it loose and either provide your own bag or use a paper one.
    I was thinking only yesterday about the amount of plastic food bags I get through in a week. When I prep vegetables I have been putting them into plastic food bags in the fridge until I go to cook them, and I am doing this everyday. Over a week, month, year – that adds up to a lot of food bags! So what I thought I would do is to buy some lidded food containers so I can store them in the fridge that way instead. I know I have to buy the containers initially but in the long run it will probably work out cheaper than buying so many plastic food bags! And I can just wash and re use each time.


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