31 daily ideas to inspire you in Plastic Free July!
Looking for some brainwaves to get you going for Plastic Free July? Look no further than our Plastic Free July Ideas Advent list – one idea for zero-waste living for every day of the month of July. Enjoy!
1. Grow your own
Growing your own reduces your need to shop, and reducing your need to shop reduces the risk of buying items wrapped in plastic or having to take a plastic shopping bag when you’re picking something up on the go. If you’re new to this gardening thing, your local library is bound to be stocked full of great publications on the topic (like ours!), or check out our mag for regular garden know-how and a comprehensive Australia-wide course guide if you want to skill up.
2. Join or start your own food co-op
Check out this great article from Milkwood Permaculture on the how’s and to-do’s.
3. Invest in a reusable takeaway coffee cup collection
And keep them in places close to hand when caffeine may be non-negotiable (in your handbag, pram or on your desk). If you’re really organised you can invest in a thermos and BYO beverage wherever you go!
4. Collect reusable bags that you love to use
Ugly green bags be damned! You can make your own (see Pip Mag issue 5 for our free Boomerang Bags How-To) or check out our funky Pip Tote collection. If you love using it, that’s just an extra incentive to go green at the checkout.
5. Make apple scrap vinegar
This stuff is great. You can use it to replace normal apple cider vinegar in your pantry, and replace many plastic-packaged cleaning products with it in your laundry. Best of all, it is literally made with scraps!
10. Make bone broth, or veg scrap stock
And store it to ensure a long supply of nutritious base-stock for your cooking. Our recipe from nutrient-dense food guru Mel Turnbull is simple, yet it tastes incredible and makes use of scraps.
11. Do a rubbish-bin audit
Sort through your trash and work out where most of the waste you’re generating is coming from – the results may surprise you and will help you to tackle your plastic habits strategically, like a ninja.
12. Shop local and small so you can BYO container
When you shop face-to-face with the owner of a store you can ask them directly to use your reusable containers for fresh fruit and veg, meats and small-goods. Shopping at supermarkets for these items means they will almost always come prepackaged, robbing you of the chance to chat to your local butcher about putting your chops directly into a BYO-container and spreading the zero-waste word.
13. Buy it once
Invest in quality plastic-free items that last like stainless steel pegs, wood-handled gardening tools and more.
It saves plastic, dollars and hours reading the tiny-print on the back of bottles to see if they contain Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and other potentially yucky chemicals. Check out 3 recipes to reduce plastic in the bathroom or our Gardener’s Hand Scrub recipe in Issue 6 of Pip Magazine.
What better way to recycle your food waste and avoid buying in plastic-wrapped garden products? See our easy Quick Compost recipe for some “hot” tips.
16. Give up on plastic sponges
Make your own cleaning cloths with old clothes or natural sponges – check out Morag Gamble’s article for tips!
17. Commit to natural fibres in your wardrobe
Polar fleece might feel all warm and snuggly but it releases a harmful trail of micro-plastics every time you wash it, that oftentimes end up in the ocean. Read more about committing to slow fashion in Issue 6 and ethical clothing in Issue 13 of Pip Magazine.
18. Make your own potting mix
It’s very easy, can be made of home-grown soil products (compost, leaf mould, worm castings) and means no more expensive, plastic-wrapped potting mix!
19. Get fizzy in the kitchen
20. If you’re craftily-inclined, get into natural dyeing
This is a beautiful way to turn scraps and remnants into “new” crafting materials. Our craft guru Deborah Brearley op-shops and stashes up on different scraps of yarns and fabrics and then dyes them together to create a unified colour, so that these scraps can come together and be made into new crafty items. See Pip issue 7 for Deb’s natural dyeing know-how.
21. Pack your lunch
Or carry snacks if you’re a grazer on-the-go. Planning ahead and being prepared means you will be less likely to buy plastic-wrapped snacks to fill you up if you get stuck out and about with a grumbling tummy.
22. Make your own sunscreen
If you spend a lot of time outdoors like our family, then you will know you go through quite a bit of sunscreen – but did you know you can make your own?
23. Grow your own chook food
You may not be able to grow all your own chook food in your backyard, but you can have a crack at reducing your external inputs and reduce the amount of packaged food you need to buy too with our simple homegrown tips.
24. Make your own toothpaste
It is deliciously fresh, much cheaper than normal toothpaste, free of questionable additives and simple to make.
25. Store your fruit and veg correctly
This will reduce your need to throw them out and go shopping again (see point 1).
26. Make your own washing powder – it’s easy!
27. If you take-away food, try asking your local restaurant if they will let you BYO containers
You never know, you may just start a takeaway revolution.
27. Skip the deli-section at your local supermarket and try making your own olives, cheeses, yogurt and small-goods
It is seriously easier than you think. Salt and mould are responsible for a whole lot of deliciousness.
29. Start a co-operative to get your own dairy goat
30. Make your own garden seaweed fertilizer
It’s cheap and doesn’t come in a plastic bottle, plus it gives you a great excuse for a seaside holiday!