Day 6: Plastic Free July 2014

Yesterday I tried out my plastic-free shampoo and conditioners for the first time. I ordered these from Lush online and was somewhat taken aback by the packaging that they arrived in.

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On first glance, I thought the white things were polystyrene balls, but the box stated that they were fully compostable, and that the cardboard could be recycled. This made me feel better. Plastic Free July however, has got me thinking about ordering online, and the associated negative issue that it is hard to avoid plastic packaging.

Anyway…back to the hair products. I had somewhat stubbornly refused to try out my shampoo and conditioner bars before July, because I was convinced they would be a poor alternative to my usual brands, and I didn’t want to have to ‘suffer’ them before I had to.

Actually, as it turned out, I didn’t notice a difference. I felt that the Lush bars were quite expensive (you can check out prices on the website), but I hardly made a dent in them, so perhaps they will last me for a long time, and turn out to be good value for money.

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The conditioner is in a compostable wrap

Rubbing the shampoo bar on my hair felt like a strange thing to do, but it lathered up nicely and cleaned my hair perfectly well. I didn’t really know what to do with the conditioning bar, so I broke a corner off and squeezed it into a pulp, which I massaged through my hair. I don’t feel that I managed to distribute it as well as I would with liquid conditioner, but it seemed to work.

I have hair that is very dry so I really need hair products that are up to the job. I am optimistic that my new bars will get me through the month without turning my hair to straw – I’ll keep you updated!

A word of advice – do tell your family if you have shampoo that looks like soap. I found mine sitting on the sink, having already washed some little hands – at great expense!

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Last night I met a friend in Edinburgh for a meal and drinks. It was a plastic-free experience (I think!). I travelled into town on the bus, acquiring a paper ticket and managed to avoid any drinks straws or plastic cutlery, so the whole outing was stress-free.

Oh, and for those of you concerned that I am being forced into a dry July because of the plastic issue, I did manage a couple of glasses of wine. I will admit that I didn’t ask to examine the bottle for traces of plastic screw-tops or plastic-coated foil. I’m pretty sure I’d have found some!  I’m sticking to the if it’s not in my bin, it’s not my plastic* rule…no abuse of the rule is allowed though!

I’m still finding that the biggest change I’ve been making to eliminate plastics, is to make a lot more of my food from scratch. I’m constantly planning a meal or two ahead, and chopping and cooking up veg where I can, so that dishes can be thrown easily together when I need them. It’s all been really boring stuff so far, like tomato based sauces, so I’m going to have to up my game soon!

We had visitors for coffee this morning and I whipped up a batch of (almost) plastic-free fairy cakes instead of buying plastic-wrapped biscuits. Plus all of the orange squeezing is meaning that less rubbish is going into the bin from non-recyclable juice-cartons. Yay!

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As ever, thanks for all of the comments and encouragement, they’re really helping!

*thanks to @polytheenpam of Plastic Is Rubbish  and Plastic Free UK for this rule