The same rules that I use to achieve a Zero Waste lifestyle can be applied to eliminate plastics from your life: Simply follow the 5R's IN ORDER:
REFUSE SUP's: Say no to Single Use Plastics, such as plastic bags and disposable tableware. You can also avoid food packaging by purchasing food from bulk bins, using your own cloth bags. Locate your nearest bulk locations, using my smartphone app, BULK.
REDUCE: your belongings: Let go of those plastics that you do not need. Donating them, puts them back on the market and makes them available to others, so they do not have to buy new.
REUSE: by buying secondhand and replacing your disposables with reusables: For every plastic disposable item out there, a durable and reusable alternative exists. Double edge razors are great alternatives to the throw-away kind for example.
RECYCLE: Buy secondhand as much as possible but when you must buy new choose metal, glass, or cardboard, which can be recycled over and over (plastics get only recycled once at best and the end product is destined for the landfill)
ROT: If you compost and adopt a Zero Waste lifestyle you automatically eliminate the need for rubbish bags. Also, stay away from compostable and biodegradable plastics. They only confuse consumers (and recyclers!) and end up tainting the recycling stream. Therefore when metal, glass or cardboard materials are not available for the new products that you purchase, choose wood or natural fibers which are truly compostable.
About the author:
Bea Johnson is the author of Zero Waste Home. Since embarking on the Zero Waste lifestyle, Bea's life and that of her family has completely changed... for the better.