7 Ways To Have A Plastic-Free Weekend

We find the weekend one of the toughest times to be plastic-free. You’ve spent all week packing lunchboxes in glass or metal containers for you and the kids, remembered your shopping bags and sipped from your water bottle but then the weekend comes and you’re out of the house a little bit more and looking for ways to treat yourself to a coffee from your local cafe. It’s all too easy to fall back into your old plastic wasting habits.

The Plastic Free July Challenge is a great way to get started on the road to a zero-waste lifestyle, but it is exactly that – a lifestyle. Incorporate some plastic-free activities and practises into your weekend and soon they will become second nature, meaning that you will be reducing your plastic without even thinking about it! Here are 7 of our favourite plastic-free weekend activities to get you started.

Visit the local farmers market

Farmer’s markets are a great weekend activity and a great way to save on plastic wrapping, eat organic, support local and independent businesses and have an all-around more personal shopping experience. You can find these in your local town and more and more are popping up in cities. Bulk food stores are also another way to say on the packaging, just grab your favourite refillable container!

Buy from the deli or bakery

When it comes to buying the ingredients for brunch this weekend visit your local bakery for your loaf of bread or the deli for your bacon. Most businesses are happy to wrap your products in your own containers or wax wraps so just ask!

Take your own picnic

If you’re lucky enough to have some sunshine this weekend, pack up a picnic and set off for your local park. As most of us can’t visit cafe’s at the moment a picnic is a great alternative, and it will help you to reduce your plastic waste.

For the ultimate plastic-free picnic, wrap your goodies in muslin or wax and store items in glass or stainless steel containers. You can also bring your own glass cups to drink out of and bamboo or metal cutlery, if you need them. Then all you need to do is just sit back and relax.

Remember your water bottle

Plastic bottles are the quickest thing to sink to the bottom of the ocean, and will never biodegrade. Plastic particles from bottles are also slowly eroding into your water so on a whole they are bad for the environment, and bad for your health! Grab yourself a stainless steel water bottle and remember to keep these on hand when you’re out and about this weekend.

Start your own herb garden or veggie patch

Herbs and veggies often come with a huge amount of plastic waste. From herb portions wrapped in plastic to fruit on plastic trays, there are so many ways that you can reduce your plastic waste and growing your own is one of the best.

Even if you just have space for a few small pots of herbs or salad leaves on your window ledge growing your own is a perfect weekend activity!

Ditch the coffee run

We know that a coffee run on a Sunday morning feels like a treat, but disposable coffee cups can no longer be recycled. It is estimated Australians use 1 billion disposable coffee cups each year. That’s approximately 2,700,000 paper coffee cups thrown out every day!

Instead, invest in some quality, fair-trade coffee that lives up to your takeaway coffee standards and make your own at home. It also means that you can stay in bed a little bit longer while you drink it.

Make your own cleaning products

There is basically nothing that you can’t clean with a little vinegar, baking soda and water. Mix 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/4 cup baking soda into 1/2 gallon (2 litres) of water in a glass spray bottle and you’ve got an eco-friendly cleaner that will clean kitchen surfaces, water deposit stains on the shower stall panels, bathroom chrome fixtures, windows, bathroom mirrors, etc.

Can you count how much plastic you’ve used so far this weekend

What is Plastic-Free July – and how to get involved

Plastic Free July is a global movement that helps millions of people be part of the solution to plastic pollution.

Founded by the Plastic Free Foundation in 2011, Plastic Free July allows us to work towards our vision of seeing a world free of plastic waste so we can have cleaner streets, safer oceans and beautiful communities.

The Plastic Free July challenge helps millions of people take small, daily actions to reduce plastic consumption. Last year, 326 million people across the globe took part in the challenge from 177 countries to reduce each participant’s household waste and recycling by an average of almost 5% (21kg). 

This year, the Plastic Free July® challenge is calling on people to choose to refuse single-use plastic in a bid to help exceed last year’s worldwide efforts and hit the global target of 1 billion kilos of waste avoidance.

Whether you’re a beginner or an avid plastic-waste warrior. This is a great opportunity to reinstate the positive progress made in reducing plastic waste and pollution in our own household and across the globe. How much of a difference would this make in your house?

Rebecca Prince-Ruiz, founder of Plastic Free July and one of the world’s leading plastic waste experts, explains why she believes the challenge can achieve record waste avoidance this year.

“Every year this challenge has grown exponentially, having started with only 40 colleagues in Perth to over 250 million global participants. This year the challenge feels more poignant than ever as we begin to realise how intrinsically our social and physical environment is tied to the fundamental wellbeing of our communities. We have also seen the power of collective action firsthand. Whilst Plastic Free July is a personal challenge, participants are part of a global effort to create cleaner streets, oceans, and a cleaner, healthier planet. We can all be part of the solution.”

The Plastic Free July Challenge seeks to address the most critical solution to plastic pollution – waste avoidance. Reducing waste and recycling is significantly more energy-efficient than piling up landfill or trying to extract plastic waste from the environment.

“Plastic Free July isn’t about drastic lifestyle change; it’s about being more conscious of the single-use plastics that you use day-to-day and taking small but smart steps to reduce them. Simple swaps could include switching to bar soap or avoiding plastic when you buy your vegetables. The majority of challenge participants started by choosing to refuse at least one single-use plastic but nine out of 10 ended up creating long-term habits that lasted far beyond the challenge itself,” said Rebecca Prince-Ruiz

Plastic Free July stated that last year, 73% of participants refused takeaway coffee (double that of those who have not been part of the challenge) and 8.5 out of 10 people made changes that have become a way of life.

To help you with your challenge, or just to help you get started, we will be sharing handy tips and tricks of how you can reduce your plastic consumption throughout the month of July. Sign up to be part of the solution and join the Plastic Free July movement here. Will you be taking part in the Plastic Free July challenge?

How To Make Vegetable Broth From Kitchen Scraps

When it comes to waste in the kitchen, reducing and reusing is the name of the game. Reducing packaging, reducing plastic appliances, reducing and reusing plastic, reducing food waste, reducing toxins. 

But sometimes the amount of food waste you produce can sometimes feel unavoidable. You are often left with what seems like a neverending pile of peels, inedible skins, nasty tasting stalks and hard roots and ends, all of which end up in our rubbish bins. 

Did you know that organic material buried in landfills causes over 3% of Australia’s total greenhouse gas emissions annually?

There are so many great ways to reduce plastic packaging, but you might be wondering ‘what can I do with my food waste?’. 

Even when cooking simple, nourishing meals the number of food scraps produced can quickly build up. A great way to target this is to make a vegetable broth from kitchen scraps. Making your own provides a hearty winter warmer, reduces your need to buy pre-produced broth and offers you a powerful blend of vitamins and minerals. 

Aside from the packaging that store-bought broths come in, these are also known to contain a high level of salt, toxic preservatives and nasty msg’s so a homemade broth is a great way to give you and your family’s immune system, and overall health, a boost during the colder winter months. 

The great thing about this broth is that there really are no rules. Collect any and all food scraps you produce throughout the week and place them in a jar or container in your fridge. 

Veggies that work really well include potato peel, the roots and peels of carrots, onion skin and roots, broccoli stems, celery leaves, pumpkin skin, and any herbs or veggies in your kitchen cupboard or fridge which are starting to look sad (don’t use if it’s mouldy though). Get creative, and experiment with flavours, by chucking anything you have in the pot and simply boiling it up!

This broth is great to use as a base for soups, stews, risotto and sauces. Just store in a clean jar or container in your fridge or freezer and pop it in your recipes throughout the week. Your boiled scraps can then be added to your compost bin. Happy cooking!


4 cups of food scraps

12-14 cups of water

A handful of any wilting herbs you have in the fridge (rosemary, thyme and parsley are great for this), or dried to supplement 

 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed

1 inch of fresh garlic, peeled and sliced

2 bay leaves

salt to taste


Place everything in a large stockpot including your water. Bring to the boil

Reduce heat and simmer on a low heat (covered) for 1 hour

Turn off the heat and remove vegetable chunks with a slotted spoon

Strain remaining liquid through a metal sieve. Allow to cool

Store in a jar or airtight container for up to a week, or freeze in portions

Have you tried making your own stock before? Let us know how it went!

5 Ways You Can Make a Difference on World Environment Day 2021

Celebrated annually on June 5, the United Nations hosts World Environment Day to help raise awareness about the environment and invite people around the world to take action to protect our planet and its natural resources. Since its inception in 1974, a different country has hosted the event with a specific theme. This year’s theme is ‘ecosystem restoration’ and focuses on resetting our relationship with nature. 

As host of World Environment Day, Pakistan will highlight environmental issues and showcase its initiatives and their role in global efforts. Led by Prime Minister Imran Khan, the Government of Pakistan – in one of the world’s most ambitious afforestation efforts – plans to expand and restore the country’s forests through a 10 Billion Tree Tsunami spread over five years. 

The campaign includes restoring mangroves and forest and planting trees in urban settings, including schools, colleges, public parks and green belts. Pakistan has launched an Ecosystem Restoration Fund to support nature-based solutions to climate change and facilitate the transition towards environmentally resilient, ecologically targeted initiatives covering afforestation and biodiversity conservation. 

However, anyone worldwide can participate in the celebration to raise awareness about our impact on nature and how we can reset our relationship with the planet. You can sign up on the WED site for updates on official events in your local area, or you can come up with ways that you and your family can celebrate right in your neighbourhood. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Plant native Australian flora for the bees

Bee populations are dwindling worldwide. Ensuring that native Australian bee species have plenty of their favourite flowers and plants on which to feed goes a long way towards helping those populations build back up. These plants include abelias, bottlebrushes, honey myrtle and other native Aussie flowers which you can plant in your backyard. You could also organise a group of keen gardeners to grow native plants in your community or children’s school.

Compost your food waste

Composting is one of the most effective ways that you can help the environment. Food waste makes up almost 40% of the typical domestic rubbish bin, including spoiled fruit and vegetables, the peels, the skins, the outer leaves, the cores, the husks, the seeds—the ‘inedible’ bits. By sending food waste to landfill, Australians generate methane equal to around 6.8 million tonnes of carbonic acid gas. Methane is 30x more potent than your average Co2.

Avoid single-use plastics

Can you go a whole day without buying anything in plastic? It’s a big ask but give yourself a challenge, you might be surprised at how easy you find it! Today could be a great day to check out your local bulk store or farmers market.

Adjust your thermostat

Greenhouse gas emissions occur anytime non-renewable energy is used to heat our houses. One of the top tips for saving CO2 is to turn your thermostat down by 2 degrees C in the winter and up by 2 degrees in the summer. These are temperatures that you won’t even notice but make a massive difference to energy saving.

Try to think about when you will really need the house heating and only turn the heating on when you are in the house. For example, if you’re heading for a trip away for the weekend and it’s the summertime, you could probably knock the heating off while you are away. Likewise, when it comes to your air conditioner, open up your house when the cool change comes in the evening and sleep with a light cotton sheet.

Take part in a beach clean-up.

At least 8 million tons of plastic end up in our oceans every year and make up 80% of all marine debris from surface waters to deep-sea sediments. There are various ways that this plastic ends up in our oceans, but one way we can help stop quickly is the amount of plastic that the tide sweeps up from the beach and coastlines. 

You can make a difference by joining a beach clean-up organisation in your area or hosting your own! Simply get a group of like-minded eco-enthusiasts together and pick up any rubbish you see on your local beach to make it a safer and more pleasant place to be. 

Do you celebrate World Environment Day? How do you mark the occasion? Let us know in the comments below.

Easy Ways To Make Your Wardrobe More Sustainable

You’ve started to make a few eco-friendly upgrades to your home, your food and your purchasing habits, but have you thought about the clothes that are sat in your wardrobe?

It’s estimated that 57% of these clothes will end up in landfill, and that statistic is only getting worse. The time is now to make your wardrobe more sustainable. However, we know this can be a daunting thought and a huge issue to tackle as an individual.

Creating a more sustainable wardrobe doesn’t mean that you have to get rid of all of your favourite pieces or limit your shopping options. It’s about learning the facts so you can make informed choices that link up what matters to you on your conscious journey, as well as some slight changes in your day-to-day life and your mindset. 

We’ve put together some of our favourite tips and mindset shifts below that you can quickly adapt to make your wardrobe a little more sustainable.

Buy organic cotton

Most people don’t realise that man-made fibres like polyester are plastic. This means that each time you wash your clothes, the plastic is melting and slowly releasing tiny particles into our water. These plastic particles can’t be filtered out, so eventually ends up in our oceans.

Switch to buying organic cotton clothing instead. Organic cotton is carbon neutral and can be grown without pesticides and toxic chemicals, meaning that it’s good for the planet and good for your overall health.

Wash your clothes on a cold and line dry

Washing your clothes with cold water at 30 degrees Celsius or lower is not only better for your clothes but better for the environment and better for your utility bills. Washing them less will also dramatically reduce your environmental impact so start doing this after a couple of wears or when they show visible signs of dirt.

Drying your clothes outside in the sun will save your energy bills but also helps to kill any nasty bugs and reduce your impact on the environment.

Get to know your clothes journey

Get to know the clothes you are thinking of buying and the brands you are shopping with by investigating the supply chain they use and their ethics. Getting informed is one of the best ways to ensure that you are looking out for the planet, and it also means that you will be able to make the best choices for yourself. Many brands out there are starting to adopt a more transparent shopping method by showing the factories and suppliers they use or producing locally. Most brands are also happy to answer your questions if you fancy getting in touch with them directly.

Organise your wardrobe

Organising your wardrobe so you can see what’s in it is one of the best ways to become a more conscious consumer. By getting organised, not only will you be able to select your outfits without the stress of rummaging through a mound of clothes, you will be able to identify better those staple pieces you are missing, which might mean you wear more of your clothes. You might even find some gems hidden at the back, which you had forgotten about. This means you are better equipped to make great style choices from your wardrobe and less likely to buy more.

Trash the trends, buy classic.

Get out of the habit of buying clothes that are ‘on-trend’ – designed to be worn for a season or two and then disposed of. Fast fashion brands are built on this with the sole intention of persuading us to buy more and more just to stay up with the latest fashions. Invest in quality pieces in classic colours and design thatch you will wear more, and for longer, to buy less overall.

Try out the #30Wears campaign designed by Livia Firth, the founder of Eco-Age (a company that certifies brands for their sustainability). This campaign encourages us to think, ‘Will I wear it a minimum of 30 times?’ and only buy an item if we know that we’ll wear it.

Shop second-hand

You should NEVER put your clothes in the bin. Instead, donate your clothes to second-hand or vintage shops. Not only will these pieces find a new home with someone that will love these, but you’ll also contribute to the charity. Humanitarian charities often send any unwanted clothes to third-world countries who desperately need them too, so you’ll be doing good. Use the one-in-one-out policy and donate an item when you buy a new one to avoid the clutter build up.

Mend and make alterations

If you love a piece but never find yourself wearing it, or it’s become slightly uncomfortable around the (ahem) mid-line, make some alterations yourself or find a good tailor who will help you to transform it into a piece that you do love. This is also a great mindset to have when buying vintage or secondhand pieces.

Find your clothes a loving home

300,000 tonnes of unwanted clothes are binned, not recycled, every year. Hence, it’s clear that sharing our wardrobes and contributing to the circular economy (an economic system aimed at minimising waste and making the most of resources) is a step toward a more sustainable future. 

If you don’t want to keep a piece in your wardrobe anymore, trying to find a new home where friends or family will love it. Clothing swap parties are a great way to do this and bag yourself those pieces that you’d always loved in your friend’s wardrobes!