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5 Plastic-Free Alternatives to Kickstart Your Zero-Waste Lifestyle

A 2016 plastic report shows that the U.S. generates more plastic trash than any other nation. While finger-pointing won’t help us solve the problem, this startling truth might just be the trigger for us to start living a more sustainable lifestyle.

While plastic usage is inevitable in some parts of our life, we can reduce our waste by choosing plastic-free options whenever possible. When possible, choosing plastic-free can lighten the burden on the planet.

If you’re ready to kickstart your zero-waste lifestyle, here are five items you can start with.

Reusable Food Storage

In any apartment home, having leftover food is inevitable. When this happens, you need to transfer them to a container for storage. But instead of stocking up on Ziploc bags, invest in reusable food containers instead.

Glass containers and jars are good to use if you’re simply stocking food in the fridge. If you’re storing food for the long term and need to freeze them, you’ll need to buy silicone bags as well. Reusable food storage may be more expensive than Ziploc bags, but they’ll last you a long time, so you don’t have to keep buying them.

Reusable Shopping Bags

When buying groceries, you’ll find yourself hoarding plastic bags in no time. The more you buy, the more plastic will end up in your care. While there are creative uses to these bags, they’re hard to recycle, so they’ll eventually end up in landfills.

This is why you should start using reusable shopping bags. You can buy one or two, and they’ll last you for years! They’re also more durable than plastic bags. You can carry more groceries at a time and your reusable bag won’t give in from their weight.

Reusable Dish Cloths

In an apartment home, messes are unavoidable. When this happens, it’s so easy to reach for a paper towel. But after one use, these paper towels go in the trash. It seems a bit wasteful, doesn’t it?

To cut down on paper towel use, you can buy reusable dishcloths. They absorb more than a paper towel and can be used many times.

Reusable Straws

While plastic straws are usually served with your drink orders, you can opt-out of them by letting your server or barista know. As an alternative, you can bring your own reusable straw instead.

If you choose to make the switch, you can buy either bamboo or metal. Bamboo is all-natural and biodegradable, while metal is more durable and is recyclable. Bring them around everywhere and leave one in your apartment home for daily use.

Reusable Water Bottles

Plastic bottled water can be found almost anywhere. It’s so easy, then, to simply buy a bottle for yourself when you get thirsty and then toss them in the trash when you’re done. But these plastic bottles don’t just disappear. Only a small percentage actually gets recycled.

Good thing there’s a more sustainable option out there. Reusable water bottles will make you less dependent on plastic bottled water. Once you get used to refilling it and bringing it around with you, you can cut down on plastic bottle use completely.

These items will help you kickstart your zero-waste journey. They may be a small change, but they will snowball eventually.

Hilltop at Shavano in San Antonio, TX

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