Diary Part 10 – was July plastic free?

In the spirit of my plastic action I’ve just returned from a beach walk whereby Rach and I picked up a full carrier bag of litter – that 2 minute beach clean turned into a good 30 mins! 

Here’s my post from the beginning of July

There’s 10 things you can try and change in your daily lives.

So, how was #plasticfreejuly? 

I tell you what, it’s NOT easy to go plastic free without a serious adjustment to your diet (halloumi comes in plastic and I just love it), an investment in time dedicated to shopping around and a bigger investment financially on products that are designed more sustainably and ethically than your average supermarket branded buys. 

The first couple of weeks I found a little easier as I basically tried to avoid shopping for anything other than food haha. Along the way I had a couple of plastic purchasing mishaps, an example included when I needed to buy some new headphones which were heavily packaged. 

Going abroad to France proved tricky too due to limited food purchasing opportunities in the local village we stayed in, there was just one Spar shop. During my journey home I had the only veggie option left on the plane, a meze box which came with teeny individual dips – in plastic of course. Despite this, I made a solid effort during my next food shop to avoid the plastic packaged veg, bought sauce in a jar and used up what I already had in the cupboard. 

As per my IGTV I’ve easily adjusted to a (mostly) plastic free bathroom but then I ended up buying a new Sure deodorant. Once that’s gone I’ll be trying a more natural one in less packaging. Thanks to everyone that gave me some recommendations following my insta story the other week! 

General observations:

  • Health & beauty – probably the easiest to change as there are so many options out there. They are typically more expensive but mostly small, start up businesses that are looking to make a change which I think is great to support too!
  • Home cleaning – I have noticed on some of the cleaning products at my Mum’s house (such as Cif) they’ve got a “refill” option, whereby you can order the concentrate online and top it up with water – it even says on the bottle in bold “don’t throw this bottle away”. Ecover sell their products in recycled plastic bottles, and there’s loads of blogs out there showing you how to make natural cleaning products. Options, but I think less obvious. Harder for me to take on whilst I’m living at home as well.
  • Food shop – the hardest by far. Limited fruit and veg options loose in supermarkets, things like cheese, ALWAYS in plastic and bags of salad always in those scrunchy plastic bags. Definitely room for improvement there from the supermarkets. I’ve tried shopping in the Chester greengrocers, and where possible I’ll refill bottles and jars.
  • Make up – definitely something I’ve not made the effort to research. I haven’t been wearing much since I got used to make up free life when I was travelling (plus I’m now lazy about it and really cba), therefore I haven’t needed to replace anything. I’d like to look into this for the future though as a make up bag is a huge source of plastic containers!

In the spirit of looking out for new ways to make a difference and make sustainable purchasing decisions here’s a short list of some great places I recommend you check out for picking up new sustainable options for your home; Plastic Freedom, Acala, Peace with the Wild and Turtley Eco. Each have a wide variety of home / health / beauty items. 

There’s also a bunch of Facebook groups (e.g Plastic free living tip swap) which I’ve joined whereby people are swapping tips, ideas, brands and products that have worked for them. Just seen this list of an incredible bathroom swap over – great work by the woman who’s done it:

OneNine5 – advert, working in partnership.

During the course of my trip I’ll be working with OneNine5 – a beautifully designed wash bag brand with sustainability at it’s core. The lining is made from recycled plastic, there’s a handy clear pouch for the plane (therefore reducing the need for a plastic bag) and once you’ve used it so much you need another one, they offer a recycling programme for used bags. Check out their website to read more about the brand and buy a bag!

Other favourites: 

A beautiful wedding 

Had an unbelievable time tanning, drinking rose and celebrating the marriage of Sarah and Phil in the South of France! A dreamy few days hanging out in the sunshine with great friends, beautiful views and delicious French cooking. I even managed to stay meat free! 

Reading: 

The Cactus, Sarah Haywood 

If you appreciate a strong female protagonist, who’s going on a journey of self discovery, (think Elenor Oliphant), then you’ll enjoy the Cactus. The seemingly controlling Susan is on an surprising journey of self discovery as she looses her mother and unexpectedly finds she’s about to be a mother herself. The story captures 8 months of her pregnancy during which she fights with her brother, makes unlikely friendships and learns that perhaps, after all she can’t control everything the way she’d like to. I love the tagline for this book, “It’s never too late to bloom” – it sums it up completely. 

Becoming, Michelle Obama

I’m not far off the end of this mammoth tale of Michelle, who has documented her life with such detail, pride and love it’s been a pleasure to read. As one of the most influential and inspiring women in the world, Michelle documents her life growing up in Southside Chicago right through to her life in the Whitehouse. Each captivating part of the story gives an insight into the morals and values she’s developed and maintained throughout her life. Hope has lent itself to be of true value in every chapter of her life and that she’s led with her family before, during and after the Whitehouse. 100% recommend. 

Watching:

Big Little Lies S2

Without giving anything away to BLL lovers who haven’t got to watch s2 yet, you’re in for a rollercoaster of emotions once again. With flashbacks to that fateful night at the end of the first season 1, the “Montary Five” battle with demons in each of their own lives; taking shape in their husbands, mother in laws, mothers, past, future and present. A highlight is the addition of Meryl Streep to the cast, who plays the unbelievable Mary-Louise, a feisty and meddling mother in law, who you can’t help but despise. That’s all I’ll say – BLL fans, you MUST watch. 

Friends 

Reliving the classic tales of the gang, who notably are the perfect age for me right now. Especially as I’m living my best Rachel life at the cafe right now! 

It’s less than two weeks until my next travelling adventure so I’m looking forward to grabbing my beloved orange water bottle, getting packed (all my plastic free toiletries of course) and exploring Indonesia! Blogs and photos to come along the way of course. 

Did you do plastic free July? What have you been upto? 

Catch up on other July posts:

Me laughing in front of views of the French countryside

2 Comments

  1. August 21, 2019 / 8:05 pm

    Oh wow that bathroom post is amazing! I am slowly doing bits of my bathroom and want to change some of my makeup over when I need to replace it but it takes so much time and effort. I admire your dedication to plastic free July!

    The Quirky Queer

    • Sarah
      Author
      August 23, 2019 / 6:20 am

      Thank you so much! Yeah it’s a big effort, but well worth it when you make little steps along the way!

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