Plastic Free July 2018

Next month it’s Plastic Free July, and I’ve decided to join the challenge.  Ever since I started this blog (and perhaps even a little longer) I’ve been trying to make small steps towards a more sustainable way of living. I’ve blogged about it on and off, and have tried to bring about some changes in this household of ours.

One of the things I’ve been struggling with is the amount of plastic that enters our household; trying to find ways to reduce the amount of single use plastics in our home, and searching for practical alternatives.  For example, we all use our refillable Dopper bottles on a daily basis,  I avoid buying coffee on train stations, unless I bring my own thermos. And on the rare occasion I do buy a coffee to go, it’s in a paper cup, without the plastic lid ( which always leaves me a bit anxious of bumping into people on the platform though). But there’s still lots of improvement to be made.

Joining a world wide challenge to avoid single use plastic for a month is a great way to be inspired and to figure out new ways of avoiding plastic and reducing the amount of (plastic) waste we produce.

Plastic Free July started in 2011 as a local Australian initiative. Today, millions of participants worldwide avoid take part. Ofcourse, the intention is to not just skip single use plastics for a month and then to fall back into old habits. I hope this month will bring lots of inspiration, new ideas and good new habits. Hopefully we’ll be able to structurally reduce our plastic waste from now on.

Still, if it were that easy, avoiding single use plastics wouldn’t even be an issue. So, how to get through this challenge?

  • Take small steps and don’t be too hard on yourself
  • Be inspired by others: register on Plastic Free July and benefit from all the useful information you can find on their website
  • Be part of a (online) community. For example, start following the hashtag #plasticfreejuly on Instagram to come across lots of inspiring accounts: motivate each other

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One of the projects I’ll be working on this month, is to replace empty soap and shampoo bottles by solid, plastic free alternatives. There are quite some alternatives available, although it did take a little search, trial and error.

I found shampoo bars at Leven Zonder Afval and Lush, and still have a large piece of Aleppo soap, which I once brought along from Turkey (I remember how, in the village where I spent many months in my early twenties, we used this soap for everything, from washing our hair, to our clothes and even our dishes. See…..it can be done…why not here in an urban Dutch environment?)

It’ll be a little challenge to get the kids to work with me. 3 (almost) teenagers with their own beauty routines and outspoken opinions on what is ‘normal’ and what is not… atleast they all fell in love with the Lavender handsoap in the kitchen.

 

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Over the coming weeks I’ll try to post some updates on our plastic free adventure. Will you join in too?

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