Aug 28, 2017

Reduce Your Waste: Part 3- Clothes, Around the House, At Work, Pets

Reduce Your Plastic, Clothes, around the house, at work, and pets

My friend Rosie at Green and Rosie Life posted 100 ways to reduce plastic and how she was doing with it. I thought I would do the same. These tips are the next 25 or so of her list and cover a variety of topics. Don't forget to check out the first post in this series that covers food, drink and shopping or the second which covers going out and about, babies and children, cleaning and personal care items.  

Leave a comment about how many you are doing! Most links are to other posts I have written. Some links are affiliate links to Amazon. If you click the link and make a purchase I may receive a commission that helps to keep the blog running. Thanks for supporting Skip The Bag!


53.  Avoid clothes and shoes made from synthetic materials

Absolutely. That is one of the 10 tips for an environmentally friendly closet!

54.  Make your own clothes using old materiel when you can or upcycling old clothes to new 

I haven't made my own clothes or upcycled them yet, but they are so cute! People are really creative and clever.

55.  Buy second hand clothes that have minimal plastic packaging

I love buying clothes from thrift stores or consignment stores. It's another one of the 10 tips for an environmentally friendly closet.

Around the house

56.  Use glass, metal or wooden storage containers

Yes, I love my Pyrex and Anchor containers. I don't have metal or wooden ones yet, but these look intriguing!

57.  Use wooden or metal cooking utensils 

A large number of our cooking utensils are metal. We got them from a restaurant supply store, but you can get spatulas or spoons from just about anywhere. Metal is great for cast iron! Read how to clean and care for cast iron

58.  Do you really need to bag it before you bin it?

This could be in reference to a number of bags in the trash can. For example, do you need to throw it in a bag before putting it into your trash can? I think of people who bag up a chicken carcass prior to putting it in the trash. Maybe you don't need to do that. Or maybe it's referring to a trash liner at all. We don't use a trash bag for our recycling. In fact, our trash cans have a removable liner that we can just take out and wash it if it gets dirty. We still use a bag for our trash, but since we compost most of our food scraps and recycle a large part of our trash. Other people use newspaper liners, but we still have a bunch of plastic trash bags we use up. 

59.  If it's broken can you mend it? 

Yep, thankfully Hubby is really handy. 

60.  Say no to junk mail

This is still on my to-do list. It drives me crazy, thankfully most of it is recyclable. 

61.  Download music and films instead of buying CDs and DVDs

We use Amazon Prime (try it free for 30 days), Netflix or Red Box for most of our movies. I tend to listen to the radio or podcasts over buying CDs. (Do you have a favorite podcast?)

62.  Use matches not a disposable lighter

Hmm, I hadn't really thought about this. We don't really need to start a lot of fires. In general you think the sturdier item will be more environmentally friendly than the item you use once and throw away. However with lighters it's not really true. Matches are from the earth and will burn and join the earth, but the lighters take a ton of resources to make and you can't refill them. So a double loss. I'll be making sure we get matches from here on out! 

63.  When doing DIY and house renovations go for natural products - wooden door frames, cotton curtains etc 

Yes, you don't have to build a new house to take advantage of incorporating environmentally friendly products into your house. The cotton curtains seem like such a no-brainer, but I probably wouldn't have thought to check! I can't say I've purchased a whole lot of curtains in my life though.

64.  Use old sheets as dust covers not new plastic ones

I don't use dust covers. We do have a fabric tarp thing that we lay out when we do paint projects.

65.  Wash and reuse plastic freezer bags.

I do this some, but I'm not 100% consistent about it. I'm working to phase out freezer bags altogether.

Don't forget to pin for later!
Ideas to reduce your plastic from clothing, around the house, at work and with pets.

At work

66.  Take in your own mug for water and drinks from the machines. 

I bring my own water bottle to work. Don't forget to check out my article on ways to go green at work.

67.  Use all paper jiffy bags, not those with plastic inside 

I have a reusable lunch bag that I use and then I use my glass containers to bring food for lunch. Bringing my lunch to work was done of my green resolutions

68.  Buy envelopes without plastic windows.

I haven't bought envelopes in a while, but I'm pretty sure the ones I have don't have plastic windows.This is a simple way to use less plastic. This would have been a great addition to my ways to go green at work it's got tons of great tips for any workplace setting, but an office in particular! 

69.  Go for paperless billing to avoid plastic window envelopes 

Absolutely! I'd also add that this reduces on transportation pollution of bills and the price of stamps! Win, win, win.

70.  Buy a "real" pen that uses a refill

I know a lot of zero wasters have gone this route. I'm not quite there on my journey yet.

71.  Do not upgrade to a new phone etc.  You were quite happy with your old one when you first got it!

Thankfully neither Hubby or I are that into technology, we pretty much just replace things as they need it, which is still too often in my opinion! 


72.  Say no to plastic pet toys 

We have a few, but in general I go for stuffed animals or ropes (these look amazing!).

73.  Avoid plastic feed bowls 

We have metal bowls.

74.  Avoid pet food in plastic sachets 

We haven't found a bag free alternative for our pets or the chickens

75.  Make your own pet treats 

We've yet to be able to make rawhide or meal worms, so we still purchase these. I've heard you can grow meal worms though!

This week definitely had some ideas I hadn't really thought of such as using matches and making sure the envelopes I buy are all paper and don't have a plastic window. Don't forget to check out Part 1: Food, Drink and Shopping and Part 2: Cleaning, Babies, and Personal Care 


  1. So many successes! With regard to No 58 - Do you really need to bag it before you bin it? I was referring to people who bag stuff (like a carcass) and then put it in a bin bag in the bin. In France we have to put our rubbish into bin bags or they won't collect it but I don't double bag anything. I therefore use the large plastic bags that my pig food comes in for this purpose - I cannot avoid buying their food in plastic but at least the bag gets a second use.

  2. I am definitely sharing this post across with my family and friends who i have been arguing for ages to get rid of plastic from our lives!