Want to Cut Down Your Plastic Use? These 3 Startups Can Help
Reduce, reuse, recycle.
Updated Oct 14, 2019 9:37 AM
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In spite of the number of reusable shopping bags you may own, the amount of glass Tupperware containers that have replaced your Ziploc bags, and the trusty canteen that helps you avoid buying plastic water bottles, reducing plastic from some areas of your life can be a difficult task. Things like cleaning products and personal care essentials (deodorant! Mouthwash!) nearly always seem to come in single-use plastic containers. Three new companies, however, are trying to change that.
The facts on plastic pollution are quite eye-opening: 40 percent of all plastic that’s produced is used just one time before it’s discarded, and that includes 46 million tons of personal care products. What’s more is that 18 billion pounds of plastic waste enters the oceans every single year, harming natural ecosystems and contributing to global warming. That’s not to say there aren’t things you can do to make a difference, though.
Conscious consumption of plastics can help you to reduce your carbon footprint and cut down on the quantity of single-use products you may find yourself reliant on. Plus, thanks to some new companies taking innovative strides, conscious consumption can be much simpler and it can make your life easier too. Take a look at three new brands chartering a new, reduced-plastic way for home and personal care products.
If You Can’t Quite Stray From Your Brand Loyalty
If you can’t quite give up your Tide detergent or Crest mouthwash but do feel a bit guilty about the plastic containers that pile up in your recycling bin, good news: Even big brands are making changes that will help you cut down on your plastic consumption. Loop, launching later this spring, is a new delivery service that plans to revive a milkman-like system that aims to reduce waste.
Here’s the gist: You order the things you love and need around your house (everything from Häagen-Dazs ice cream to Pantene shampoo and Seventh Generation surface wipes), they arrive in reusable stainless steel and glass canisters, you use up the products, drop the empty canisters in a Loop tote, and schedule a free pickup. The packaging is then sanitized and used again, and again, and again. Early signup is open now.
If You Need a Few Things to Keep You Feeling Fresh
There are some personal care essentials that err on the side of luxury—say, a face mask or a bath bomb. And then there are some that are simply essentials for keeping up a good mark of personal hygiene. By Humankind has recognized the necessity of the latter and has developed eco-friendly alternatives to typical single-use packaging.
For now, just a few products are offered by the brand: deodorant, mouthwash, and shampoo. Traditionally, each of these products might be stored in some kind of plastic vessel that would be tossed once the last remnants of the product are fully used up. Instead, By Humankind has developed innovative packaging and formula solutions alike.
All-natural shampoo bars (offered in three scents: lemongrass, thyme, and lemon lavender) make for totally waste-free cleansing options, while natural deodorant (that really does work!) cuts down on plastic thanks to its reusable canister. The most enticing option of all, however, is the brand’s take on mouthwash: pellets, packaged in refillable containers, just need to be combined with water, making for a perfectly travel-friendly breath-freshener.
If You Want to Clean House the Cleanest Way
Here’s something you might not want to hear: Many cleaning products contain ingredients you probably don’t want in your home, and just because the products you use might say they’re “all-natural” doesn’t mean they actually are. cleancult was launched with the ambition to make cleaning your home a totally clean process—and one that leaves little to no packaging behind, thanks to its refill system.
All you have to do is order your selection of must-have cleaning supplies (a simple quiz about your home and cleaning frequency will set you up with a selection of everything from laundry detergent to hand soap). Then, set up a subscription to get recyclable carton-packaged refills whenever you need them.
Using an earth-friendly base of coconut oil in most of its products, cleancult strays from harsher chemicals to produce actually natural cleansers. Plus, the company has paired up with Carbon Fund to make sure that the company nets zero carbon emissions. That’s a clean you can feel good about.
See more sustainability tips: The Most Eco-Friendly Place to Find Furniture Isn’t a Store How One Person Finds Home Decor Treasures in Other People’s Trash Is This What Cities Will Look Like in the Future? IKEA Says Yes