Wednesday, 27 January 2021

A year of Eco-friendly Swaps challenge - The beginning

 In a world with an ocean full of plastic we must do better! We've spent years using and abusing our planet and nobody is free from the issue, we are all at fault from our consumption through to living in the fast paced world we do. In recent years we have really seen the world start to stand up and take action to be kinder and more aware of the things that are causing issues in nature from global warming to drowning our oceans in plastic. A lot of that comes from the surge of Eco Warriors, like Greta Thunberg who are inspiring the world to be better and do better for our planet because it's the only one we have!

Growing up in the age of global warming and the discovery that our consumption is choking the earth has had a deep impact on me. I was towards the end of my teenage years in 2009 when it had officially been 100 years since mass plastic production began. I grew up in the era of plastic realisation, as the world saw the beginning of the true impact. I know that we all have a responsibility to make changes that impact our lives in positive ways and to do so all the time. I have spent years slowly changing little things in our daily lives to be more eco friendly and to ditch the plastic. Through this journey I have been really surprised by some of the every day items that are full of plastic, it's honestly shocking! It's these products that I try to change most because a small thing we use thousands of times can be replaced by one product used over and over to ditch more than you might think.

With each passing year our efforts to ditch the plastic plaguing us has been more successful and now I'm challenging myself to ditch even more. I want to make one change for every month of 2021, there are many reasons I want to strive for just one change,  the biggest being that I also want to challenge you to join me in my year of swaps. If everyone makes small changes we can really have a huge impact on the plastic being used and disposed of.

Another reason is that making the change to a more eco-friendly product can at first be more expensive since it can require a new product that will be reused over and over or it needs an additional item for storing the swap product in, which again will be reused many times. 

I have already shared some ideas on 7 really easy swaps to make to be more Eco-Friendly which includes products that we have switched to over our journey and they are ones which are both easy to implement and easy to keep up, so if your new to making swaps they could give you an idea on where to start.

We have now made our big January eco-friendly switch which is one that I have been wanting to do for a while, ditching our plastic cleaning products! I've realised since being home more that we use an enormous amount of cleaning bottles, I am okay with the cleaning product usage itself since there are five of us they are actually needed for upkeep. However add the 2 bottles a month of multipurpose spray, bathroom cleaner along with the various other products we use from plastic bottles and over a six month period we are recycling about 15- 18 plastic bottles, spray tops and inner tubes, it's shocking isn't it? That is just counting the cleaning products for our  kitchen, bathroom, floor, oven and window cleaners!

To help me ditch the plastic I decided I am switching to the Ocean Saver Ecodrops which I actually first tried in the SaveMoneyCutCarbon sustainable swaps box that was gifted for including in our Eco- Friendly gift ideas at Christmas. I then purchased a large pack with several cleaning product types we use regularly. 

The Ocean Saver Ecodrops can be used along with an old spray bottle that you own to save on plastic but I wanted to completely cut the plastic as much as I could so I purchased glass spray bottles from Poundland (£2) and the pods fit perfectly inside the top. Each ecodrop comes with it's own stick on labels for your bottles so I added those, put the ecodrop inside and added the water before leaving to burst. Once the ecodrop is dissolved you simply shake and use. It takes a few minutes and your ready to go, very convenient and easy to get ready for use. 

What I really like with the Ecodrops is that not only am I able to ditch the plastic but all the Ocean Saver Ecodrops are plant based, non toxic and aren't tested on animals so they are even vegan friendly! They make for a great swap compared to the many products usually found in my cleaning cupboard, most of which bare a toxic label of some kind or another.

I purchased a 5 pack of Ocean Saver Ecodrops for £6.99 on Amazon

I will be sharing an update on how we are getting on with the Ocean Saver products in my quarterly update post. It will also include all the swaps I have made during the start of the year and how each has worked out for us in that time. I have a list of swaps I want to try to make this year however some have a bigger first outlay to start so I will be doing the swaps as I feel we will be able to budget them into our daily lives throughout the year. I suggest that anyone who is wanting to take part in the challenge do the same as finances can change regularly throughout the year, especially at the minute. Do be mindful and realistic about what swaps might need to wait and ones which can be made without too much additional costs on the products you purchase now.

I am so excited to see how many swaps we can make and what impact it will have on our daily lives.

What Eco-Friendly swaps have you made and loved most?

If you haven't made any yet what swaps would you most like to make?

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