10 Zero Waste Swaps | How to Reduce Plastic Waste

10 Simple Zero Waste Swaps

Need help reducing plastic waste in your day-to-day life? Our zero waste tips have you covered

Zero waste swaps
Image Credit: Unsplash


It’s never been more important to live a waste-free life, but making sustainable switches in your day-to-day life needn’t be a chore.

If you want to do your bit for the environment but don’t know where to start when it comes to zero waste swaps, we’ve asked our friends The Sustainable Duo to share their top tips.

1. Bring your own reusable bag

You never know which stores use plastic or paper, so just go the whole nine yards by bringing your own! Keeping a foldable bag handy comes in useful when you least expect it, so try to carry it with you whenever you’re out and about.


It’s also a good idea to have a designated “sustainability bag.” In here, you can store things like reusable bowls, plates, zero-waste deodorant, bamboo utensils, mugs and handkerchiefs.

eco-friendly vegan
Plant-dyed cotton bags are a zero-waste essential. Image: Sustainable Duo.

2. Don’t forget the reusable straw

Always keep a couple of reusable straws on you while travelling or eating out. Or ask yourself: do you really need to use a straw anyway? Keep a few in your sustainability bag just in case you hang out with someone who forgets theirs!


Tip – give reusable straws out as zero waste party favours.

3. Use bulk bags and cotton grocery bags

This is what an average day of zero waste, high vibrational grocery shopping looks like at our house. Wholesome and organic foods only, baby! These bulk bags are made of organic cotton and mesh. Great news – bulk bags take up little-to-no space in your backpack, purse or carry-on so they are travel friendly and so worth it! Bye bye, plastic bags!

Tip – stash some in your car so you’re always prepared when heading to the supermarket.

zero waste vegan
Zero waste shopping made simple. Image: Sustainable Duo.

4. Bring your own utensils for lunch

If you travel or eat out a lot, you’ll notice there are plastic utensils everywhere you turn. You never know where there will be reusable options, so opt for bamboo utensils instead. Bamboo is an eco-friendly material and it’s compostable too. Win win!

5. Ditch traditional deodorant

Most conventional deodorants not only come in plastic, but they can be extremely toxic. Try a zero waste, organic deodorant bar or try making your own DIY deodorant!

zero waste vegan lifestyle
DIY deodorant bars are a great swap for a more sustainable life. Image: Sustainable Duo.

6. Say goodbye to your plastic razor

Switch out your plastic razor for a stainless steel razor. How much money do you pay for razors a month? Well, metal razors can cost very little and will last your entire life.

7. Pack reusable mugs

Whenever you are out at a restaurant or café, ask for a reusable cup if you don’t bring your own mug. Most paper cups are lined with wax or plastic to prevent the paper from dissolving. For this reason, most paper cups can’t be composted or recycled.

8. Grab a bamboo toothbrush

Bamboo toothbrushes are a great deal more eco-friendly than plastic toothbrushes. Did you know that every plastic toothbrush ever created is still here? Plastic toothbrushes fill the oceans and landfills. One billion plastic toothbrushes are thrown away every year in the United States alone.


Tip – to dispose properly, cut off the bristles and throw in the trash. Compost the bamboo or use it as a gardening stick to label your plants!

9. Bring a reusable bowl

Whether it be a salad market bar or an acai bowl café, bringing your own bowl prevents a lot of unnecessary waste. Some eating spots offer reusable bowls while dining in, but you’d be surprised at how many restaurants don’t have sustainable dining-in options.

healthy vegan food
Coconut bowls are a fantastic way to reuse waste coconut shells. Image: Sustainable Duo.

10. Pack snacks to avoid plastic

You know us vegans, we like to eat a lot! Pack anything in a reusable to-go box, from sandwiches to cut-up fruit.

The goal with all this is not perfection, but simply having a zero-waste mindset! We live in a consumerism world which can make things more tricky, but all you need to worry about is trying to do your absolute best and focus on:

  • Preparation
  • Reducing
  • Reusing
  • Recycling

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