Plastic Free July

Plastic Free July image

Are you ready for the Plastic Free July challenge?

A global movement founded by the Plastic Free Foundation, Plastic Free July is a challenge aimed at helping us to reconsider the amount of single use plastic that we consume on a regular basis. By challenging ourselves to reduce our consumption throughout July, it is hoped that we will develop habits that will last far longer. 

How can you get involved?

Going plastic free for a month may be quite difficult in some ways but it can also be quite easy in others. We’ve put together our top 5 tips for going plastic free this summer. 

  1. Time to hit the shops? 

    This one is probably something that most of us already do, but when you go shopping, take some reusable bags with you. This helps to reduce your plastic consumption as you won’t need to use the shop’s single use bags (it also helps you save on the 10p bag charge!). But do you only ever use your reusable bags for visits to the supermarket? Why not take them with you whenever you head out? After all, they’re not just for grocery shopping, you can use them for all kinds of shopping.  

  1. Cosmetics and body care

    Take a moment to look at your bathroom cabinet. How much plastic do you see? Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, deodorant, hand wash, toothbrush etc. The list could go on! There are now a lot of companies on the market selling plastic free cosmetics such as solid shampoo bars (click here) and bamboo toothbrushes. 

    You could consider switching to a natural deodorant that avoids single use packaging such as Wild (click here). With this subscription service, you make a one-time purchase of a deodorant case and then set your preference for how often you want to receive your compostable, vegan friendly refills. It easily services as an environment and purse friendly option!  

  1. Travelling the world?

    With summer upon us, you may be looking forward to a nice break somewhere away from home. When you pack your toiletries, don’t head to the high street to pick up a range of miniatures. Instead, head online to find small containers to decant your full-size products in to. From silicone to aluminum, there are lots of options to pick from. You’ll have saved space in your suitcase without any need for unnecessary plastic. 

  1. Time for a picnic

    It can be tempting to head to the supermarket and pick up a meal deal to take to the park or beach on a sunny afternoon. But if you plan ahead, you can make your sandwiches at home, wrap them in a beeswax wrap and carry them with you in a canvas tote bag. Instead of buying a plastic bottle of water, fill up a reusable bottle at home and bring a reusable cup to treat yourself to a coffee. If you decide to eat out at a restaurant or cafe, ask for your cold drink to be brought out without a straw. Avoiding using plastic straws is one of the easiest ways to cut back on our consumption of single use plastic (though we are aware that plastic straws can be essential for those with certain disabilities).  

  1. New season, new you?

    If you’re looking to refresh your wardrobe for the warmer months and would prefer to buy new rather than going to charity shops, consider looking at ethical clothing brands such as Lucy and Yak. Known for their quirky patterns and signature dungarees, Lucy and Yak pride themselves on using eco-friendly materials and renewable energy in their supply chain. (You can read more about their sustainable fabrics here). 

    Or if you need some shoes, consider Birkenstocks. These German shoes are known for their longevity, and they are made from renewable and non-toxic materials (mainly cork and natural latex). They are exclusively made in Germany so the company must adhere to strict labour laws.  

We know that going fully plastic free, even just for one month, is very difficult and a lot of work. However, if you just take on board one or two of our tips, you’ll be able to reduce your consumption of plastic. And like we always say, any action, no matter how small, always helps. 

Please let us know if you try out any of our tips or if you have any of your own you’d like to share. 

It is important to take professional advice before making any decision relating to your personal finances. Information within this article does not provide individual tailored investment advice and is for guidance only. We cannot assume legal liability for any errors or omissions it might contain. Ethical Futures llp is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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