The sun is shining, and with lockdown restrictions lifting, it feels like summer is almost here. That means it’s time for long days in the park, drinks in the beer garden, and maybe even a sunny holiday. 

Unfortunately, plastic pollution often goes hand-in-hand with the joys of summer; takeaway drinks and picnics usually means more single-use plastics. Thankfully, there are tons of products available on the market that are eco-friendly, recyclable and plastic-free. 

Here are some of our top tips on being plastic-free this summer and our recommendations of our favourite products you can use all year round.

Reusable Water Bottles and Coffee Cups

A must-have for anyone worried about their plastic waste, a reusable water bottle will help you stay hydrated all summer long without compromising on your values.  A stainless steel canteen water bottle will also keep your water ever-so-cool in the hot summer months. 

Bottles and bottle caps are the third and fourth most collected plastic rubbish in annual beach cleanups; purchasing a reusable bottle will reduce this ridiculous amount of plastic waste. 

One Green Bottle sells a range of water bottles in various shapes and sizes, providing the perfect choice for everyone. Ditch the single-use plastic bottles forever and make a world of difference by choosing stainless steel bottles free from harmful plastics.

Whether it’s for a hot coffee or an iced latte, Britians get through 2.5 billion single-use coffee cups per year; these produce an annual carbon footprint equivalent to over 152,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide, similar to the emissions 33,300 cars spew out in a year. 

Switching to a reusable coffee cup also has some financial benefits. Costa and Starbucks offer 25p and Pret 50p off your coffee purchase for using a reusable mug, or you can bring a coffee from home and save the cost entirely! 

Solecup offers a range of barista friendly travel mugs crafted from tempered glass to maintain a premium drinking experience on the go, choosing from either a silicone or cork band for an easy grip and comfortable sipping.

Plastic Free Picnic-ing

If you’re planning on eating outdoors this spring or summer, then collecting your eco picnic-ing supplies is going to be essential. 

Plastic cutlery ranked as the second most dangerous plastic rubbish, right after fishing nets, causing marine animals a painful death as they mistake them for food. Instead, you can choose a bamboo cutlery set, perfectly designed for any occasion. Bamboo is also biodegradable, so it won’t end up polluting the environment at the end of its life. 

The UK consumes approximately 8.5 billion plastic straws per year, a figure that is needlessly high when a reusable straw works just the same. Made from 304 food-grade stainless steel, these straws are very durable and can last you a lifetime. The handy cleaning brush makes cleaning these straws very easy or they can be placed in the dishwasher.

Another great way to picnic plastic-free is with a reusable lunchbox or bento box; they’re compact yet roomy enough to carry your favourite lunch. Reusable lunch boxes are also perfect for kids, as they have two compartments that keep their food separated, with sturdy clasps easy to open for little fingers. 

You can grab all this and more from I Am Ecoist. This brand was created when its founder started questioning herself as to why all their food shopping was wrapped in plastic. 

Remembering her childhood days when she used to accompany her mum to farmers markets back in India, buying loose vegetables and fruits, and bringing them home in a reusable bag.  Wanting to go back to these ways, ‘I am Ecoist’ was born.

Eco Parent Products

It can be exhausting being an eco-parent, and when you’re out and about with your little one, it’s very tempting to choose convenience over sustainability. However, these fantastic companies are making it easy to become a sustainable parent, everywhere you go, one step at a time. 

An estimated 3 billion nappies are thrown away each year in the UK, accounting for up to 3% of all household waste; There is a  solution for this, reusable nappies. 

We love the Close Parent brand, “Pop-in nappies are as simple with your newborn as it is with your toddler thanks to the one size fit from birth to potty. Our unique all in two design gives parents flexible absorbency and quicker drying times without compromising on quick one-step changes just like a disposable.”

Close Parent also provides a great collection of swimwear for your little one. We love their swim nappy, made using a unique soft and flexible laminate with a stain-resistant outer layer to keep your nappy looking great and soft fleece inside to keep little ones cosy in the water.

If that wasn’t enough, their versatile little mat makes outdoor fun tidier. We think it’s the perfect companion for every family! It folds away quickly for easy storage, and the removable handle makes it easy to transport on the go. The playmat is easy to care for, the printed side is stain resistant and can be easily wiped clean just like their popular bibs, or you can throw it in the machine as it washes like a dream. Best of all, it is big enough for the whole family to cosy up on.

For an extra bit of fun with your little ones, Dr Zigs giant bubbles guarantee hours of enjoyment for your children to play and learn. Quality and sustainability are at the heart of what they do, unlike most other bubble toys manufacturers, they avoid plastic where possible.

Dr Zigs also have special Catnip scented and peanut butter scented bubbles for cat and dog friends alike! 

Download The Goethical App For Your Eco Cleaning Fix

Shop from GoEthical during 2021 to help make sustainable lifestyle choices, whether you have a specific product in mind or you’re looking for items to reduce your waste. Buy and sell ethical & eco-friendly, artisan, and pre-loved and products at GoEthical.

If you want to browse an array of environmentally friendly and sustainable cleaning products, all you need to do is download the GoEthical App for IOS or Google Play. On it, you can chat and connect with like-minded community members and discover detailed listings for ethical and eco products, from small sellers to well-known global brands.

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