If you have a plastic bag full of plastic bags in your house, read this.

I recently posted tips on how to get rid of plastic products in the home in an Instagram story, and received some awesome questions and comments. Some of you are already taking steps to be more environmentally conscious, which made me so happy to hear and I figured this would be the perfect thing to talk about with Earth Day coming up. Hopefully something here will inspire someone to make little changes in their daily life that will have a big impact on the planet, as so many people have been inspiring me to do the same!

After making the transition to a plant based diet almost two years ago, Mark and I really started researching other ways to be environmentally conscious and how to make healthy lifestyle changes for our family. No, we did not throw all of the plastic things out of our house in one day or adapt all of these techniques all at once {but kudos if you do that lol}. Slowly, we just adapted one more habit at a time and now these are all part of something we strive to do every day. Notice, key word there is *strive*. We’re not perfect and we do have our slip ups, but our goal is to aim to do our best every day. Here are some of the ways we ditched plastic in our lives and easy ways you can to!

“Plastic straws are really bad for the ocean. It’s estimated that we use over 500 million every day in America, and most of those end up in our oceans, polluting the water and killing marine life. We want to encourage people to stop using plastic straws for good. If we don’t act now, by the year 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish.” -https://www.strawlessocean.org/faq/

Plastic Straws: Try going out to eat with us when we’re with Jackson. Warning: if he sees you drinking out of a plastic straw, it will make him sad thinking about all the plastic hurting the animals in the ocean. He really holds us accountable with this one. It would be a lot easier to just be like, oh whoops, forgot my straw at home so I’ll just drink this plastic one tonight. Nope, this kid will call me out AND make me feel bad for using one so it’s either remember those damn straws and make sure there is always one in my purse/car, or suck it up and drink straight out of the glass {and if you know me you know how much of a germaphobe I am}.

These are a great option to have at home, bring in your purse, have in your car, and even keep on your keychain- so you’ll never, ever forget!

“The average American family takes home almost 1,500 plastic shopping bags a year.” “100,000 marine animals are killed by plastic bags annually.” https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/programs/population_and_sustainability/sustainability/plastic_bag_facts.html

recycling, reusable bags, go green, save the planet, say no to plastic
Re-use shopping bags or buy these at your local grocery store

Plastic Bags:

We always make sure to bring multiple reusable bags with us when we go grocery shopping. Keep a few in your house and in your car (for those last minute trips while you’re already out). And if worse comes to worse, asking for paper bags at the register is a more sustainable choice! Just make sure you recycle those when you get home, or better yet bring them back with you next time and keep using those as your reusable bags!

“One billion plastic toothbrushes are thrown away every year in the United States. This creates 50 million pounds of waste annually in the US alone.” -https://livegreen.co.nz/blogs/all-blogs/10-devastating-facts-about-plastic-and-pollution
bite toothpaste, bamboo toothbrush, reusable toothpaste container, glass jar, recycle, save the animals

Plastic Toothbrush/Toothpaste Containers: Bamboo toothbrushes are a GREAT alternative to plastic ones. We also recently discovered this toothpaste company and love how environmentally friendly they are with their packaging! Click here to check them out and how they’re making a positive change for the planet.

“Americans throw away 35 billion plastic water bottles every year.” Plastic chemicals can be absorbed by the body— 93 percent of Americans age six or older test positive for BPA (a plastic chemical.) - https://www.ecowatch.com/22-facts-about-plastic-pollution-and-10-things-we-can-do-about-it-1881885971.html
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Plastic Water Bottles:

Before we moved into our house this summer, our fridge did not have a built-in water filter. We used that as our excuse to buy plastic water bottles every few weeks. Looking back, I totally regret being lazy and settling for convenience. We stopped making excuses and completely ditched plastic water bottles for good. Hey, sometimes in desperate situations it happens, like when we're at Target for two hours, forgot a tumbler, and just getting the kids out of the car seat is enough to make you thirsty. If you regularly go to a coffee shop, bring a reusable mug with you- it will make a huge difference and I promise it's much cooler to take a picture of your reusable mug than your plastic or paper cup with a Starbucks logo and your name misspelled on it. Plus, you'll feel good about doing your part to ditch single use items!

“Plastic constitutes approximately 90 percent of all trash floating on the ocean's surface, with 46,000 pieces of plastic per square mile.” -https://www.ecowatch.com/22-facts-about-plastic-pollution-and-10-things-we-can-do-about-it-1881885971.html

glass Tupperware, reusable Tupperware, say no to plastic, earth day, go green, recycle

Plastic Wrap:

Ditch it! We use reusable sandwich bags and Tupperware for Jackson’s lunch and all of our leftovers. They also make reusable cling wrap that you can find online! We stopped using plastic wrap a few months ago. I used it all the time, but now I’m thinking “what the hell did I use it for?” Clearly it wasn’t important or I would still “need” it, right?

“Did you know that every day more than 51,000 trees are cut down to support North America’s paper towel habit? To make one ton of paper towels 17 trees and 20,000 gallons of water are polluted. If every household in the U.S. used just one less 70-sheet roll of paper towels, that would save 544,000 trees each year.” -https://www.norwexmovement.com/9-reasons-pass-paper/
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Paper Napkins:

While this one isn’t plastic, it’s something we recently changed up in our house. We were using paper napkins every day, probably a good 5-6 between the three of us. For Christmas, I bought Mark these cloth napkins from Cultivate and they have been a serious game changer. Not gonna lie, it took almost a year of convincing me to give up paper towels, but making the switch to cloth napkins was much easier than I thought it would be! Only downside is my least favorite chore- laundry. I will say, these have actually forced me to get into a better laundry routine, like actually washing and folding clothes regularly! My husband is also very happy about this. I even bought cute patterned ones for when we have guests over for dinner vs. these crazy color ones lol.

Go do a beach or park clean up, use biodegradable garbage bags, rethink all of the plastic containers you buy and replace them with glass ones, recycle, or simply by your actions/ spreading the message to friends and family. The more people see you using your reusable bags/plastic straws, you'll be subconsciously inspiring them to do their part too. Every little decision we make has an impact on the environment, so just be aware of what choices you make and set a good example for those around you. If you take away one of these tips today and start making them a habit, it’ll have a global impact- and that's way more important than using a bendy straw in your margarita! ;) If anyone has questions or any other great tips, please feel free to share! #savetheplanet


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