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Why refuse to use plastic anything?

1. It’s getting hot.  I rent my basement and for about a week last summer it was tough for my kids and I to get a good night’s sleep.  I rent out my basement, so we were unable to escape the heat down there (and hey, we’re Seattlelites, so no AC either).  How hot has it gotten since you were born?  Read this NYT article to find out.  Plastic consists of oil and other toxins.  If we need to curb our dependence on fossil fuels to cool down the planet, we’ve got to curb our dependence on plastic too.

2. Marine life.  There’s proof that marine life from whales all the way down to phytoplankton are mistakenly choosing plastic materials  to nourish themselves and their young.   And it’s not working out so well.  

3. Food contamination.  Whatever the marine life in our oceans eat will eventually travel up the food chain onto our plates (if you’re eating seafood).

4. Unexplored toxicity in plastic resins.  Think your food is safe in its plastic container?  Think again.     Ever drank water from a water bottle that’s been sitting in your car for awhile?  If it tastes funny, plastic particles are definitely leaching into the water and you shouldn’t be drinking it.  This kind of thing doesn’t seem to occur in glass or aluminum and it makes sense because these materials are more stable.   Says smallfootprintfamily.com: “Because the toxins in plastic can cause health problems, it is important to avoid containers that leach chemicals like BPA, phthalates, lead and antimony into your food, water and the environment.  Click to learn 20 ways to do it.”

My DD and I have been trying to figure out three sanitization of  her reusable pads on our trip.  Let me tell you it hasn’t been fun.  But we’re getting through it, learning from it, and all the reasons above make the work so easy.  It’s the least we can do.

Pads. Period.

I no longer need them, but I’ve got a couple of incredible growing  girls that do/will!  Thankfully, we have options!  Commercially produced sanitary pads have some bold promises, but these features are backed by a toxic cocktail of harmful chemicals that impact the earth and air as pointed out in this article:

“The plastic layer which is used to make a disposable sanitary pad stain-free and the chemicals used in producing it get further transferred between soil, water and air..”

Here is a list of sanitary napkin alternatives ranked by choice:

1. Sea sponges.  I know, right?!  WTF?!   But yes, they can serve as an effective absorbing mentrual tool.  PROS: natural, about as zero-wastey as you can get!   A few snips for comfort and you’re off to the races!  Last as long as a tampon.  CONS: No string, so much squat to remove or sew on a loop of cotton thread.  Removal at work is tricky… must have a baggie to place it in or sink to rinse.  I’ve done both!  Cleaning these with peroxide between use is EXTREMELY important and  hydrogen peroxide, to my knowledge, only comes in plastic bottles.  🥺😢😭  Get more info here.

2. Thinx  My best girlfriend asked me if I’d heard of these today. I had not! Fast forward 45 minutes later and I have an order for three pair for my oldest. Excited to check these out! The absorbent pad is built right into the underwear! There are all kinds of different styles and even different colors.  The reviews are incredible! Check them out! PROS/CONS: We’ll let you know!

3. Cloth pads: We purchased Wegreeco Bamboo Reusable Sanitary Pads. PROS: Not plastic! Cool designs!  Can use them over and over!  Easier on your body… no chemicals from pads touching your body.  CONS: Washing on the road is not easy!  My DD got her period the day we left for our road trip! 😬

4. Diva cup: I purchased this awhile back and it didn’t work for me.   I like the idea, but it popped out pretty easily.   If you’ve used one and have had a good experience, I’d love to hear about it!

I believe the Thinx will be a game changer for us.   DD is looking forward to trying these out!

Below: Our last “pad dash.”

 

 

 

Day 3 – Deodorant Results Are In!

A clear winner has been confirmed!  Wave your hands in the air like you just don’t care – you can rest soundly knowing you can not only SMELL good, but avoid using pit stick with harmful chemicals AND save the planet at the same time!

Both the Primal Pit Paste and Kaiame Naturals deodorants had some impressive results, but one emerged as my clear favorite!  Watch to learn which!

Day 2 – Deodorant

I’m giving up plastic in 2019, and just yesterday, I ran out of deodorant! According to the 2017 census, there are currently 247,813,910 adults living in the United States. If the average American adult uses 10 deodorant sticks a year, we’d be throwing 2,478,139,100 empty deodorant applicators into the garbage dumps. Even if we did recycle them, they present an added challenge because deodorant applicators are mixed material items – items that contain different kinds of plastic (such as the dial on the bottom of the tube, the plastic insert that moves the deodorant stick up and down, the cap, and the protective insert that you removed before you started using the product). Not all these “parts” are labeled with a resin identification code so it may be difficult to tell whether your local trash company will (attempt to) recycle them, and can result in a contaminated batch or recycle stream, which can cost cities 1,000s of dollars. So… I’m currently in search of an alternative with more sustainable packaging. I’ve found 3 options to try next week:

  1. Kaiame Natural Deodorant: fairly good ratings on smile.amazon.com (when you purchase your items at Amazon Smile, a % of your $ will go to the charity of your choice), and I love their packaging! Appears to be a glass jar with a metal lid – totally sustainable! Yay!

2. Primal Pit Paste: Also has fairly good ratings, so I’m inclined to try both and see which actually works. Their packaging doesn’t appear to be as sustainable as the cap appears to be… duh duh duh…. PLASTIC! The jar is glass, and it’s still 2018 (not officially in my non-plastic buying mode yet) so I’m going to indulge myself with this product to see if it lives up to its good reviews in my pits!

3. DIY “no-waste” options: After watching a most entertaining account of one woman’s attempt at using her own DIY zero-waste deodorant in a very hot climate, she revealed an intriguing option: LEMONS!! So guess who will be slapping some lemon juice in her pits tomorrow morning?? 😀 Apparently this works surprisingly well in the Thailand heat, so I’m inclined to give it a shot!

I’ll keep you posted as I “pit” these deodorant options against each other!

Cindy

Day 1: November 9th, 2018: Single Use Coffee Cups BEGONE!

Truly, my journey started about a month ago when I began to think about what life would be like without plastic.  I am kind of a walking billboard for whichever product I’m currently excited about, which makes me the perfect candidate for promoting a zero-waste life!   Today I got coffee with a friend. I was giddy to show off my Stojo cup!  One of the biggest offenders of Single Use Plastic (SUP) I notice in the city of Seattle are single use coffee cups (58 billion are thrown away each year in the United States).   It’s not always easy or practical to remember to bring a big, bulky reusable cup, so a couple weeks ago, I began to search for a collapsible alternative.  Enter Stojo!

PROS:

  • Collapsible, you can easily fit these in a pocket or purse.
  • Ounce markings on the inside of the cup
  • Cool collapsible straw!
  • Easy to collapse!
  • Dishwasher safe!

CONS:

  • Taste left behind.   SOLUTION: Wash in the dishwasher, or by hand after you’ve consumed your cup of coffee.
  • Plastic sleeve and lid.  COUNTER ARGUMENT: Purchasing just ONE of these cups will take the place of 156 single use cups I might purchase throughout the year.  Verdict: A little plastic in my Stojo is FAR better than a LOT of plastic waste otherwise.

DAILY PLASTIC-FREE CHALLENGE: Read the above links in this blog page.  Especially the link about 58 billion coffee cups.  It will blow your mind…

Love,

Cindy