ZERO WASTE SWAPS

When I began my Zero Waste lifestyle, I found the below swaps were the best way to emit single-use plastics and unnecessary packaging from my life. I’m not saying you need to rush out and buy a Keepcup or a brand new canvas bag, instead look to what you already have inside your home to make these swaps

REUSABLE BAGS instead of PLASTIC BAGS

This is one of the easiest swaps. Everyone has some sort of reusable bag floating around their house, if not – “borrow” one from a friend or buy one from the op shop and put it in your handbag or keep it near the door or in your car. That way you will always have one near you and won’t have to use a plastic bag.

When buying fruit and vegetables, consider letting them go “naked” (they have their own natural skins) or using some cloth produce bags. These can be bought or you can even sew them up yourself. Try to choose a natural fabric so they can decompose when no longer needed.

I use some lingerie bags and clothing bags from when I purchased clothing

I recommend:
Ever Eco
4My Earth Bags
ONYA

REUSABLE COFFEE CUP instead of TAKEAWAY CUPS

I’ve never been one to purchase a takeaway drink often, basically because I like to make it at home to save money. But I did purchase a takeaway coffee mug from T2 a few years ago to carry my smoothies and teas out and about. I still have it, but I recently upgraded to a Keep Cup as I just love the look. I pursued my fiancé to purchase one too as he travels for work a lot.

A travel mug isn’t a necessary Zero Waste purchase, but it does make getting a coffee a lot easier! You could also use an old glass jar or even just grab a mug from the cupboard. Some places even offer a discount for using your own cup.

Nothing annoys me more when I see people having a ‘takeaway’ coffee sitting down. It would be so much better for you and the environment to sip your beverage out of ceramic, glass or BPA free cup.

REUSABLE STRAWS instead of PLASTIC STRAWS

Every time I see an old photo of me holding a drink with a straw in it, I cringe. Plastic straws are one of the worst things for the environment – Do I really need to link the video of the turtle with a straw stuck up his nose?

I could rant on forever about the evils of straws (read about it here), but instead, I will show you some pretty alternatives. Or you could even just go straw free – remember to say “no straw please” when out an about.

I recommend:
Glass Straw
Stainless Steel Straw
Bamboo Straw
eBay

REUSABLE WATER BOTTLE instead of PLASTIC DRINK BOTTLE

Despite never being one to buy bottled water when out, I love the idea of a reusable drink bottle. I actually used to refill a VOSS glass bottle and use that as my dink bottle, but after smashing quite a few – I decided to purchase a stainless steel bottle. It has actually been a great choice, not only am I drinking cleaner water (plastic particles leak into the water in plastic bottles), I am saving money by not buying water when out and about!

I purchased my little bottle from here, there are so many other brands out there. I recommend Biome, Shop Naturally, and The Source. They all carry their own brand or many brands of reusable drink bottles.

BAMBOO TOOTHBRUSH instead of PLASTIC TOOTHBRUSH

In Australia, over 30 million toothbrushes are used and disposed of by Australians each year, amounting to approximately 1000 tonnes of landfill each year! So basically, your very first toothbrush is still lurking in landfill somewhere…
I made the switch to bamboo toothbrushes months ago now, I found that they felt better in my mouth and I wasn’t using any plastic. WIN!

Although, most bamboo toothbrushes do have nylon bristles which cannot decompose like the handle can. I keep my old bamboo toothbrushes for cleaning, but the best way to dispose of them is to snap the head off or pull out the bristles then put the handle in your compost and the bristles in a jar to prevent them going into landfill. I know this is what Bea Johnson of Zero Waste Home does.

I purchase my bamboo toothbrushes from an organics store on Smith St, but all the stores I linked above carry a variety of brand with the Environmental Toothbrush being a popular choice.

MENSTRUAL CUP instead of TAMPONS/PADS

Since an average person menstruates for forty years and uses approximately 20 tampons/pads per cycle (240 tampons/pads each year). They will use around 9,600 tampons/pads for their entire menstrual lifecycle. Most of these are FLUSHED down the toilet!!!

I honestly cannot sing the praises of using a menstrual cup instead of a tampon! It has honestly been one of the biggest changes of my zero waste journey!

Yes, it does take a bit of getting used to, but once I got the hang of it – I found it easy. There is a ton of helpful information on how to use a cup online and the brands themselves answer any questions you have.

The brand I use is JuJu. I chose this one because it was made in Australia and was recommended to me by a friend. Although the cost is more expensive up front, you can save up to an average of $90 a year!

Read more about the environmental issues of the humble tampon here

There are many more Zero Waste swaps I could tell you about, but I might leave those for another post. The above are some of the first changes I made when transitioning to a plastic-free lifestyle. All these changes are environmentally friendly, save you money and contribute to a smaller carbon footprint. They are also better looking than any of the single-use products out there!

So make a change, the Zero Waste/Plastic Free lifestyle is a growing movement
Become apart of it

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the Zero Waste lifestyle, leave me a comment below

 

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SPRING RACING

It’s finally Spring! The days have gotten longer, the sun is actually out and we don’t need 50 layers

It’s also Spring Racing time – although I’m not the biggest fan of the actual racing, I do love to see the outfits. The people who break the style rules are the ones to watch, whether it be a pantsuit instead of a dress or earrings instead of a fascinator, it’s cool to see how individuals take on the rules for Spring Racing

Image credits: Vogue.com, Vogue.comVogue.com

 

As the big day approaches, you can hear the frantic slam of wardrobe doors and the wails of “I have nothing to wear”! all over Melbourne

But look a little closer and you will find that you can reinvent that dress from last season with a few accessories. Still convinced that you need to buy everything new? Then follow me to Vinnies...

Wearing: COS jumpsuit | Fascinator/Bag/Shoes/Earrings - Vinnies

 

Traditionally Derby Day is reserved for a monochrome outfit. Think all black, all white or a mixture of the two. This is definitely the day for me!

Although I didn’t have a flowy dress that was perfect for spring racing hiding in the back of my wardrobe, I did have this jumpsuit that was just waiting for its time to shine
By adding thrifted accessories, I created a classic monochrome look that is perfect for Derby Day

The Fascinator originally had a giant tan bow on it, that wasn’t exactly the look I was going for so I cut it off
Don’t be afraid to experiment with your opshop finds, by cutting/bejeweling/distressing them, you can make them one of a kind!

The Glo-mesh bag gives the outfit a vintage twist. It also has a detachable strap that can even be worn as a belt or necklace

These shoes were my bargain for the day at only $8. They have barely been worn and complete the outfit perfectly

But say you weren’t a fan of fascinators or wanted a more casual look?

Wearing: COS Jumpsuit | Sunglasses - Neubau Eyewear| Hat/Clutch/Shoes - Vinnies

 

Simply grab a felted hat, a smaller clutch and some sunglasses. The hat tones down the dressy look of the jumpsuit and the clutch gives it more practicality. I would even ditch the heel and slide on a classic loafer shoe to keep me comfortable

Playing with accessories is a great way to transition any look. By adding colourful accessories this jumpsuit can be reworked for another event. You could even tie a beautifully printed scarf into your hair, wear big earrings instead of a hat. The possibilities are endless and thrifted accessories are the best way to let your personality shine through and avoid the cookie cutter store trends

I love to shop at Vinnies as I never know what I’m going to find. An example of that was this beautiful Witchery dress that is basically brand new! I loved the floaty style and thought it would be perfect for Emirates Stakes day or Crown Oaks day

I imagined this dress with a beautiful straw boater hat, but unfortunately, I didn’t find one – such is the luck of op shopping!

Luckily the dress still looks stunning when paired with a simple felt hat and a low suede heel. The brown heel adds a nice contrast. Again I used my Glo-mesh bag as a clutch

Wearing: Thrifted Vinnies Dress | Neubau Eyewear- Sunglasses | Bag/Hat/Shoes - Thrifted Vinnies

 

I absolutely love that all the accessories that I found can be rotated with each dress and can even become staples within my wardrobe

Anyone considering buying a new outfit for the Spring Races should first visit their wardrobe to scope out what dresses they have. Even the most simple dress can look new season with the right accessories. Then visit Vinnies for some Spring Racing inspiration. Even the plainest fascinator can be tweaked to add some personality

So go out there and embrace your local Vinnies and get creative! If you need a little help, just let me know…

I’d love to hear about your Vinnies finds. Comment below!

 

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