Read about the first week of our posts about waste reduction strategies here. So far we have 1 small bag of trash for the first 2 full weeks into the month of January and we have not yet put any trash out for collection. It is still the end of the holiday season so mostly plastic packaging, wrappers, tissues, band aids, and old or broken household items. Full update at the end of the month.

Here is the summary of our second week of posts.

8. Bar soap

No packaging. It just dissolves away. We were gifted this lovely sampler box from Parnella Naturals, small batch natural soap maker in Sunderland MA. They have bars that go for about $8 each.
The larger bar is from a friend who makes goats milk soap at home with milk from their own goats. One of my goals for this year is to learn how to make my own! 
(I intend on reusing this box and recycling the paper! I love it when I get plain colored boxes and paper I can reuse for gifts or organization.) 

9. Tubeless Toothpaste

There a several different waste free toothpastes out there, including making your own. Do some research along with trial and error to find out what works for you. 
I like the Toothy Tabs from Lush. I end up only using half a tab because it does cause a lot of foam. They recycle the bottles at Lush or you can recycle it. I like using these kind of bottles for traveling.

10. Reusable Food Bags

I struggled to find the proper term for the name brand Ziplock so I’m just going to call them food bags. 
These silicon bags we found on Amazon. They clean easily (hand wash) and we’ve used them in the freezer and fridge. We’ve been using them for several months now and I would say my only complaint is we need bigger sizes and more. They are very sturdy and so far I’ve noticed they keep food fresh.

11. Fabric Wipes

These are flannel and we found them on Amazon but if I was more skilled I would have loved to have made them. I also am looking into buying some more on Etsy to support individual creators. 
It seemed like the logical thing to do if we were doing the cloth diapers, we just throw them in with the diapers. 
I just soak them in water and put them in a recycled plastic canister that I poked some holes in the top of. I have a small spray bottle on hand with half water, half witch hazel, a couple drops of tea tree oil and Castile soap that I will use for any particularly stubborn diaper messes.

12. Biodegradable Toothbrush

I used to have an electric toothbrush but it bugged me how inefficient it was and that I was throwing out two batteries every couple months. So after some research I found these.

This is what I hope becomes the norm. A biodegradable, high quality product that is sustainably sourced and packaged thoughtfully.

Note: I’m not going to throw out all my free plastic toothbrushes from the dentist because that would defeat the purpose. I plan on saving them and using them later in case someone who stays over needs one or donating them to a local shelter. There’s a balance that has to happen when you make the switch. A thoughtful process that includes both past and future decisions. Make use of what you have and make better decisions in the future.

13. Reusable Makeup Pads

When thinking about my makeup routine the one thing that I found myself throwing out was the cotton rounds I used with makeup remover like micellar water or coconut oil. 
I found these organic cotton reusable pads online. One other thing I thought I would include is something I’ve been using for years. It’s called the Makeup Eraser. It’s fabric with one fluffy side and one smooth side and it takes off makeup with just warm water.

14. Zero Waste Period Solutions

This is super private and scary to put out there but if it inspires one person it will be worth it. 
I looked up different words for a period, trying to find more politically correct terms but then I stopped. It’s 2019, let’s talk about this stuff more casually. Not interested? Doesn’t apply to you? Come back tomorrow for another post! 
There’s a TON of different solutions out there and THE most important thing is that you find what is comfortable and sustainable for you. (Sustainable as in you are going to want to continue to use it not just that it is good for the planet.) 
After lots of research and trial and error I found a good combination of reusable pads (Etsy), period underwear (Thynx+Amazon) and the Diva cup. 
If anyone has any more questions or wants more information let me know! Keep an eye out for some polls in February, I’ll be asking people for what they’d like us to elaborate on. (If you hadn’t caught on, Jenny wrote these posts)

More to come next week!

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