July is a month of fun, excitement, busy schedules, and late nights. For some of us who are constantly on the move, chauffeuring our kids here and there or celebrating the summer holidays, being environmentally conscious isn’t always at the forefront of our minds. However, for most of us, cutting down on our use of plastic can be an easy, time-effective switch that benefits both ourselves and the planet.
As Plastic Free July kicks off, here are 10 great ways to get involved with some low waste trends and maybe just fall in love with them for the long haul.
WHO GIVES A CRAP
Who Gives a Crap is an excellent service that ships sustainable toilet paper and paper towels right to your door. Similar to many other low waste brands, Who Gives a Crap looks to benefit the planet and everyone on it. Each product sold is made from recycled or sustainable materials and 50% of the proceeds go to building toilets for people in need around the world. On top of these benefits, they also offer a subscription service for those of us who always seem to forget it at the grocery store.
Sustainable razors are without a doubt an investment, but usually, one that’s entirely worth it. The brand Leaf Shave offers two types of razors—the Leaf and the Twig—which can each come with a stand, a pack of 50 blades, and a blade depositing container for easier recycling. The Leaf razor holds multiple blades and has a pivoting head, while the Twig is more of a classic single-blade razor. Both are made of solid metal, are easy to use and clean, and are long-lasting.
SHAMPOO + CONDITIONER BARS
Shampoo and conditioner bars are one of the easiest swaps, but it may take some time to get used to. Just like with regular shampoo and conditioner, each and everyone is made differently for different hair types. It may take a few too-oily or too-scented or too-drying bars to find the one that’s just right for you and your hair. Some crowd favorites come from Meow Meow Tweet, Bar None, and HiBar.
The better the access is to a swap, the easier it is to swap. Cleancult is nothing but easy since its paper packaged liquid hand and dish soap are sold at numerous box stores in the metro area. The cartons make for a great swap for refilling your reusable soap containers at home, and Cleancult also offers products on their website ranging from laundry detergent to multipurpose cleaner.
RIVER ORGANICS MAKEUP
For those of us still searching for the perfect makeup that gives your skin a dewy, fresh look, River Organics is definitely among the best, and is plastic-free to boot! From cream blush, bronzer, and highlighter to eyebrow wax and mascara, their long-lasting, simply made makeup is an excellent plastic-free swap.
A simple swap many of us are familiar with and even use daily are reusable tote bags. Keeping one or two right next to the door helps cut down on single-use plastic grocery bag use and even single-use paper bags.
When was the last time you replaced your toothbrush? Odds are it’s been longer than the suggested time (3-4 months). A great way to cut down on plastic this month, or in the future, is to switch to bamboo or plant-based brush. Bamboo or plant-based toothbrushes can be found almost anywhere, but if you’re having trouble finding one check out The Strategist’s list of best ones to grab.
REUSABLE WATER BOTTLE
Here at Detroitisit, we LOVE our reusable bottles. From Glass to metal, they make for a great transportable resource, especially on hot days. If you’re on the hunt for a reusable bottle, Ocean Bottle uses one of its bottles’ costs to fund the collection of 1,000 single-use bottles in weight that are bound for the ocean.
Multivitamins and vitamins are often sold in plastic containers, which aren’t ideal for Plastic Free July. Vegums is a sustainable, vegan-friendly gummy vitamin service that sends a month’s supply of vitamins of your choice straight to your door. All of the packaging is biodegradable and your first order comes with a metal tin to keep your vitamins fresh.
Shopping for locally made and resourced products is a great help to the environment as well. BYOC Co is a fantastic, Ann Arbor-based company that sources as much as it can locally and offers almost everything in a container-free fashion. Customers can either bring their own container or use recycled ones offered in store, and fill up on liquid hand soap, dish soap, laundry detergent, and multipurpose cleaner, as well as bamboo toothbrushes, shampoo and conditioner bars, compost buckets, makeup, and pretty much anything else you can think of.
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