Want to start ditching the plastic, but not sure where to start?  Well, join me on my Colour Me Sustainable journey – here are 10 swaps that will slip into your life with ease!

  1. Disposable coffee cups to Reusable coffee cups; most are around the £10 mark and with coffee shops providing around 25p off when you provide your own receptacle, you will have made your money back in 40 coffees… Bargain! Plus, you can get some beautiful designs made from all sorts – bamboo, glass like the gorgeous KeepCup, even used coffee cups (rCup)!
  2. Clingfilm/clingwrap to Beeswax wraps; these are widely available and come in some stunning patterns or you can a make your own! Link to the tutorial here.   
  3. Shampoo bottle to Shampoo bar; some can leave a residue on your hair which can make it feel greasy so do some research. I use Lush Seanik – it leaves my hair feeling super clean plus it is a beautiful turquoise to brighten my shower.  It’s not cheap but it does last a long time if you look after it!
  4. Tea bags to Plastic-free tea bags or loose leaf in a diffuser; Yep, you’d better believe it! In Sept ‘18, it was estimated that 96% of tea bags contained polypropylene! Clipper Tea announced it is now plastic-free – hoorah!!
  5. Plastic bags to Reusable bags; canvas, string, straw. Buy or get creative and make your own!
  6. Supermarket to shopping local or growing your own fruit & veg; You can’t get more local than the back garden! It can be so rewarding (and inexpensive) to grown you own food but it is very seasonable and not necessarily practical for year-round supply. Markets and farm shops are the perfect place to find quality ingredients that don’t come in additional wrapping.
  7. If you’re buying items normally sold in plastic packaging – Either buy in bulk or find a refillable shop; Either minimise the packaging or, better still, research a pop-up refill shop near you. Within our local area, we have Fill Food, Scoop Zero Waste and Thatcham Refillable and my latest discovery in Thame, The Wholefood Pantry covering Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire.
  8. Plastic straws – None! There are paper or metal alternatives but refusing is the best option here! 
  9. Get some houseplants; they will look good, make you feel happier and fill you house with lovely oxygen! Cleverly, they can remove pollutants and improve air quality. There are some that even I can’t kill… although, thank goodness for Mr. CMS keeping an eye on them! A peace lily is one of my favorites – it actually eats mold! – and my cheese-plant is lush!
  10. Disposable plastic razor – Safety razor; a closer shave plus, they look stunning! The English Shaving Company offer this beaut for a bathroom pop of colour.

There are lots of ways to be more sustainable and, actually, it is about mindset more than anything else. People say “it will make no difference”… I believe that making small changes can change your mindset and this will infiltrate other aspects of life… if everyone does this – what a force for good we will make!

What eco-swaps will you take up? What else would you recommend for a sustainable newbie?

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