Simple swaps that help you throw away less
Are you trying to cut down on the amount of stuff that goes in your trash can? Cutting out waste entirely from our lives is extremely difficult - but certain throwaway products can be easily tackled. By swapping them out for a more durable option, you can ensure they never get thrown away again.
Plus, it’s not just about cutting down on waste - all of these well-designed products will give you a far better experience than their throwaway counterparts. Because who wants leaky Tupperware and flimsy plastic pegs anyway?
Read on to find out our favorite easy swaps to help you reduce your waste. If you take care of them, they could all last you a lifetime.
1. Metal straws
Disposable plastic straws…
Only get used for a few minutes before being thrown away. They can take up to 200 years to decompose, hopefully in a landfill - and if they end up in the ocean, they can cause significant harm to wildlife.
Are ready to last a lifetime. Each stainless steel reusable drinking straw is antibacterial, non-rusting, non-staining and non-odor retaining.
These Dalcini ones come with a lifetime guarantee, plus they also come with a carrying case and a cleaning brush!
2. Linen tea towels
Cheap tea towels…
Don’t absorb water efficiently, leaving you smearing moisture around your plates and hands. As if that wasn’t bad enough, fluffy tea towels also leave trails of lint as you dry up. Eventually, thin tea towels will wear through and get holey.
Are highly absorbent and quick-drying, thanks to the inherent properties of woven Turkish cotton. They’ve also been tested for super absorbency; dries well and soaks up liquid. Their vibrant colors will bring a pop of sunshine to your kitchen.
3. A wooden pepper grinder
Disposable pepper grinders…
Those prefilled plastic ones you get at the supermarket? Terrible at grinding, and they’re not even refillable. Sometimes the top pops off and floods your dinner with peppercorns. Plus, they’re far more expensive in the long run.
Is made from PEFC certified beech wood, with a high quality grinding mechanism made of hardened steel. In fact, that mechanism carries a lifetime guarantee, and it’s engineered by Peugeot (as in the car maker). Save money and plastic by buying wooden salt and pepper grinders once, and refill them over and over.
4. A metal water bottle
Disposable plastic bottles…
May be recyclable, but billions still get dumped into the USA's landfills each year. Chemicals or microplastics leaching from plastic bottles into drinks is also a concern - especially if you’re reusing the same one for a long time.
Is made of premium grade stainless steel, making it both chemically inert and practically indestructible. Triple-walled copper vacuum insulation keeps drinks cold for up to 24 hours and hot for up to 14. It has a generous capacity at 28 oz and leakproof top, and the wide mouth makes it easy to fill and clean. A durable travel companion ready to last a lifetime of service.
5. A stainless steel food storage set
Plastic food containers…
Can’t handle repeated heating and freezing, and will often crack. It’s also prone to staining (microwaving a spag bol once should do it), and odors can hang around even after thorough washing.
Is made of top quality food-grade stainless steel. These containers can handle the freezer and dishwasher and is made from seamless construction with no nooks or corners for food to get stuck in. In a useful set of ten, these containers are so versatile that you can use them around the house or for your kids' lunches.
6. A lifetime guaranteed baking tray
Non-stick baking trays…
Have a synthetic coating that eventually flakes off. Non-stick coatings can’t handle high temperatures, and after enough time spent under a hot grill, they’re bound to deteriorate. And once you’re getting Teflon in your food, that’s a baking tray destined for the trash.
is a perfect versatile ovenware that can be used for warming up frozen hor d’oeuvres or baking all sorts of pastries. Multi-cored for rapid and even heat distribution, this tray is thicker than most bakeware brands on the market. They are also proudly USA-made and lifetime guaranteed.
7. A coffee bottle and french press combo
Disposable coffee cups…
Create a huge amount of needless waste. In the USA, it’s estimated that 50 billion paper coffee cups are being thrown away every year. This mountain of waste is the cost of our love of convenience.
Is a clever and convenient solution to remembering your reusables. Being on-the-go doesn’t mean that you should have to sacrifice great tasting coffee, especially if you already have it at home. Made with vacuum-sealed, double-walled stainless steel, it will keep your coffee hot for hours to come. The french press ensures smoother, grit-free batches without over-extracting your grounds, thanks to its micro mesh filters.
8. A stainless steel razor
Can be incredibly expensive, and despite all the bells and whistles, often don’t give you a very comfortable shave. The blade is the only thing that wears out, yet we have to throw away the whole unit every time, making them non-recyclable due to the mixed materials.
Might look a little intimidating, but is incredibly easy to use. No nicks or cuts - just the closest, most comfortable shave of your life. When the double-sided blade wears out, you can simply recycle it and change it out for a new one. This razor carries a lifetime guarantee.
9. Cotton produce bags
Plastic cling film…
Is a wasteful single-use product that is non-recyclable, and can take 450 years to degrade in landfill. Plus, the PVC in plastic wrap is a possible carcinogen - did you know that if you microwave cling film, it should never touch food? The chemicals that make it ‘clingy’ also make it harmful to health.
Are a safe and sustainable alternative to cling film that lets vegetables breathe. These bags are perfect for moisture-loving greens, carrots, celery and other produce and keep them fresh and crisp for up to two weeks, by providing a humid environment that also breathes.
Could your loved one benefit from buying less? Get them a copy of our founder’s manifesto, A Life Less Throwaway.