How to live plastic free
BEACH CLEAN EXPERT
“A cleaner, greener and better world” We speak to North Face’s ethical fixer, Jazz Singh-Khaira
Simple swaps Your choices have the power to change plastic policy
Shake up old routines
A guide to zero-plastic bathroom alternatives
Issue No. 1 | March 2019
A few words
arch is very much the season for a spring clean, and with the sun finally making an appearance, people are now engaging with new and exciting ways to change things up and find new routines to build into their daily lives. In this issue we’ve spoken to Claire Jackman, the founder of The Vale Coastal Beach Cleanup in South Wales. Her initiative looks to tackle the issue of plastic and litter on our beaches. Claire is a woman who had a dream to tackle the huge problem of plastic on our coastlines and made it happen with the help of local volunteers and the wider community. We can all learn something from Claire - whether you set up your own beach clean, update your morning routine or simply swap your meal deal for a homemade lunch. From changing your cleaning products for homemade plastic-free alternatives and swapping your plastic packaged food for loose alternatives, to getting behind a cause and supporting Greenpeace’s plastic packaging campaign, the revolution definitely begins at home. We know that it’s easy to feel like you’re going on this plastic-free journey alone, so we’ll also let you know about the people who are making a stand and reducing their impact on the planet in all sorts of unique ways. Spring clean your plastic consumption and help save our planet.
The team x Keep in touch @canvasandglass
SHAKE UP YOUR SPACE
ECO- BLOGGER HOME HACKS
Your ultimate guide to cleaning, the Canvas & Glass way
Take a peek inside the kitchens of your favourite bloggers
GLOBAL CHANGE REPORT
10 - 11
IS RECYCLING ENOUGH?
Get inspiration from plastic-free progress from around the world We investigate what really happens when you recycle plastic
MEET OUR FOLK THE CREATIVE 18 - 19 Becky shuck left her job at Lush to create her own stripped-back cosmetic line form her kitchen
21 - 23
THE ETHICAL FIXER Jaz Singh-Khaira lifts the lid on ethics at super-brand VF
CONSCIOUS KITCHEN SIMPLE SWAPS 24 - 25 Making everyday changes has the power to transform plastic policies
ZERO-PLASTIC GROCERIES How to shop in your local supermarket with no plastic packaging
STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD NOT JUST A PRETTY FACE
12 - 13 14 - 15
PARTY LIKE IT’S PLASTIC-FREE Avoid eco-embarrassment with our failsafe guide to festivals
COVER STORY: CLEAN COASTS We take a closer look at coastal cleaning and learn to become beach clean experts
16 - 17 20
SHAKE UP OLD ROUTINES Make your morning more plastic-free with our zero-waste bathroom alternatives
PLASTIC-FREE BEAUTY BRANDS Cool brands to complete your eco-cosmetic collection
What are your thoughts on March’s issue? Tell us what you think by using #WeArePlasticFree
d n e mm o c e r s r e gg o l B
Plastic-free kitchen hacks
rom sponges and household detergents to clingfilm and plastic utensils, household plastic is very tricky to avoid, but it is doable. At canvas & glass we’ve been talking to inspirational people around the world who are living the plastic-free life and are ready to offer their tips towards a more eco-friendly home.
By Maria Mellor and Lucy Smith
The thrifty tip
Handle: @ecothrifty Hack: Zoe has ditched the clingfilm and stores food in containers with lids or
covers bowls with plates. This is an easy way to cut down on single-use plastics using what you already have. Lunchboxes are also a great swap for sandwich bags; easy to clean and you can use them again and again. As a lot of tea bags are made from plastic, Zoe suggests you grow your own mint, lemon balm and lavender to make nice herbal teas.
The cleaning guru
Handle: @lesswastelaura Hack: Laura buys coconut fibre scourers (these are really easy to get hold of on Amazon) instead of plastic washing up sponges. If you use a new sponge every week, that’s 52 sponges put in the bin every year. There are plenty of plastic-free alternatives to get hold of. Laura also tries to buy all of her fruit and veg loose when she goes to the supermarket, she says no to single-use bags and takes her own when she’s shopping.
The metal advocate
Handle: @_its_easy_being_green_ Hack: Ellie says it’s far better to buy utensils made from metal and not plastic.
This isn’t to say you should toss out everything you have that’s plastic; just use it until it breaks. Metal utensils are far more durable in the long run and will save you from putting unnecessary plastic in the bin over time. Once you’re done with your metal utensils, or if they ever break, you can donate them as scrap metal. Metal can be recycled and made into something new a lot easier than plastic, especially the hard black plastic that a lot of kitchen utensils are made from.
Shake up your space
The paper bag enthusiast
Handle: @plasticfreepenny Hack: Penny says your fruit and veg comes in its own packaging (its skin) and it’s kept them safe while they were growing - you don’t need plastic produce bags. For smaller items there are produce bags you can buy that are either made out of cloth or recycled plastic. For times when you end up at the supermarket unprepared, Penny suggests grabbing a paper mushroom bag for your lettuces and smaller vegetables - just remember to reuse it a few times and compost it at the end.
The storecupboard hack Handle: @imperfecteco Hack: Alanah doesn’t like to use cling film. However there are so many
alternatives, like beeswax wraps, and it’s super easy to make your own - all you need is an oven, some fabric and beeswax beads. Vinegar helps to remove limescale and can be a really versatile agent; Alanah uses it in her homemade cleaning spray. Buy your milk in glass bottles too - you’ll reduce your use and you can have it delivered straight to your door.
Instagram inspiration Make your own morning smoothie
Bulk is beautiful!
Check out your local bulk foods store or if you don’t have a bulk shop in your area, you can still buy in bulk. Buying the biggest bag of rice and the biggest bottle of vinegar
Wooden brushes look great too
Natural sponges last longer
packaging and is still a great step in the right direction. Consider ordering glass milk bottles
oing plastic-free doesn’t have to be a big and scary change. You don’t have to be chaining yourself to buildings to make a difference. The real revolution begins at home. Making your own cleaning products is an easy way to massively reduce your plastic use. You can save money and finally get rid of that pesky baking soda you have left over from that one time you decided to bake a cake, all while saving the planet. Shop bought cleaning products don’t just generate single-use plastic, they also lead to harmful chemicals being released into the environment. When you use cleaning products in your toilet, sink and dishwasher, do you ever think about where it ends up? The chemicals we spray in our bathroom are meant to be filtered out before the water is released back into our water sources, but one study found only 30% of chemicals are successfully removed. In fact, a 2002 study showed that 69% of all streams across the US had traces of cleaning detergent in them. These chemicals are harmful to wildlife, and in some cases can lead to over fertilisation of things like water algae, which sucks up oxygen from ponds and streams. As a result, less oxygen in these water resources means less aquatic creatures. In this case, it’s not just the plastic packaging which is the only issue. While it’s all very good us telling you that homemade cleaning products are the way forward, what exactly is it about a few cupboard items that mean you can trust us?
Zesty lemon everyday cleaner
Forest fresh toilet cleaner
Ingredients Makes 500ml 2 tbsp white vinegar 1 tbsp bicarbonate of soda 500ml hot water juice of ½ a lemon
Ingredients Single use 6 tbsp bicarbonate of soda 6 tbsp white wine vinegar 5 drops of tea tree oil
Directions Simply mix the ingredients together in a bowl and ta-da, you have a cleaning product.
Directions Mix the bicarbonate of soda and white wine vinegar in a bowl. Then add 10 drops of tea tree oil then store in a vessel of your choice.
Serious grime remover
Glorious glass cleaner
Single use Ingredients 4 tbsp bicarbonate of soda 1 tbsp castile liquid soap
Makes 200ml Ingredients 8 tbsp white wine vinegar 8 tbsp water
Directions Combine the baking soda and the castile liquid soap, then add warm water until you get a loose paste. Apply to a non-abrasive scouring pad, and then scrub away.
Directions This is a simple but brilliantly effective mixture. Simply mix the vinegar and water together in a bowl and shine to your hearts content.
Does plastic-free cleaning exist?
Yes. And it’s easy-peasy lemon squeezy.
By Juliette Rowsell
Shake up your space
The ingredient low-down
All you need to know about the magic ingredients for your plastic-free cleaning cupboard
White wine vinegar
A lemons’ natural acidity makes it perfect for cleaning. The acids found in lemons are actually antibacterial and antiseptic, as well as being a natural bleach. The high acidity in this zesty fruit creates a hostile environment for many kinds of bacteria, including E. coli and salmonella. However, it’s important to remember that lemon juice doesn’t kill the pathogens, it just makes them inactive. Lemon rinds can also help to add a natural shine to things like bathroom surfaces and brass.
Similarly to lemons, white wine vinegar’s natural acidity is what makes it an integral part of natural cleaning products. In particular, white wine vinegar cuts through grease, so it’s often found in homemade kitchen products. Vinegar has many superpowers. It can dissolve away soap scum, be used to shine up mirrors and windows or even get rid of sweat stains of white clothing. However, we don’t recommend using vinegar on delicate fabrics, as it might damage the fibres.
Bicarbonate of soda
We’ve all been there. It’s the day before your mum’s birthday (which you totally didn’t forget about), and in a mad panic, you have baked her a cake to compensate. The only problem? You’re left with a tub of bicarbonate of soda which seems to be pretty much exclusively used in cakes. The good news is is that you can help save the planet and get rid of this ingredient that’s collecting dust in the back of your cupboard. Bicarbonate of soda is actually a kind of salt. It absorbs odours, giving a deeper and more thorough clean allowing it to remove stains.
This might be the one that you haven’t heard of before, but have no fear, castile soap is often used as a base in many kitchen and bathroom cleaners. It’s a chemical free soap made from a variety of vegetable oils. Its name refers to Castile in Spain, where the olive oil based soap originates from. So if you see this bad boy mentioned in any recipes remember: it’s just a natural, animal cruelty free soap that helps provide a lather and grease cleaning property to your products. You can find castile soap online and in Waitrose. We recommending checking out Etsy.com.
How to store your creations It’s better to reuse than recycle where you can. We recommend putting your cleaning product in an old plastic-spray bottle. This means that your old spray bottles are getting reused and not ending up in our oceans. Or, if you feel a little braver and you’re willing to go without the ease of the spray element, you can always put it in a glass jar and using a sponge to get to those pesky hard to get to areas.
Your favourite cleaning recipes, tips and tricks with the canvas & glass community using the hashtag #WeArePlasticFree
Global change report Weâ€™re bringing you the positive progress on what governments across the globe are doing to limit the sale and distribution of plastic
Plastic coffee cups could become a thing of the past
Last October the UK government set out its plan to ban plastic straws, drink stirrers and cotton buds. These three items were chosen as they are used for only a few seconds but take hundreds of years to break down. The plan is to introduce a ban that will come into effect at some point between October 2019 and October 2020.
In 2018 the European Parliament voted for a complete ban on single-use plastics including plastic cutlery and plates, cotton buds, straws, drink-stirrers and balloon sticks. While there are some procedural obstacles to overcome, MEPs hope to enforce the ban by 2021. If the injunction is introduced before the end of Brexitâ€™s transition period, the UK will also have to introduce the new rules.
Plastic bans and restrictions vary from state to state - some such as Arizona even actively prevent restrictions on plastic bags. However, California has a partial ban on plastic straws and in 2016 was the first state to ban most stores from providing single-use plastic bags. Hawaii also has a plastic bag ban, and Washington State has a ban underway.
California is ahead of the curve with their plastic-bag ban
Making waves Peru is committed to keeping Machu Picchu beautiful
Visitors to Peru’s 76 natural and cultural protected areas will now no longer be able to carry in single-use plastic in an attempt to prevent further pollution. At Machu Picchu, tourists produce 14 tonnes of waste everyday, much of which is plastic. The ban has now been put into place, with the aim of replacing plastic with biodegradable or reusable alternatives.
Get involved cleaning your local beaches too
Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, announced his intent last June to eliminate all single use plastic by 2020. He said: “Let us all join together to beat plastic pollution and make this planet a better place to live.” While his efforts are noble, they have been met with criticism, saying that his timescale is unrealistic and would need significant investment from the industry and public.
WHAT CAN YOU DO? SIGN A PETITION Cities around the world are making the plastic-free pledge
There are plenty of petitions across the internet to try and get governments and local authorities to make big changes. At the moment, Friends of the Earth are collecting signatures to introduce a 25p charge on single-use cups in Wales.
CLEAN IT YOURSELF
Surfers Against Sewage are holding their annual Big Spring Beach Clean between 6-14 April 2019. You can attend an event in your local area, or help to organise one yourself with friends and family.
By Maria Mellor
Recycling is not
the solution Recycling plastic is better than simply throwing it away, but it still isn’t the best option
he way we handle waste in households usually assumes an ‘out of sight, out of mind’ attitude. We put things in the rubbish, recycling or food waste and let the council take it away. Putting plastic in your recycling bin may feel good, but how good actually is it for the environment? Ask anyone to tell you where recycled plastic goes and the majority won’t be able to tell you. All plastic can be recycled, but as we know - money makes the world go round, and economical viability greatly affects whether or not a certain type of plastic is recycled. Alec Powell, general manager of resource and recovery for Grundon Waste Management Ltd., said that the reason why
Refuse and reuse
It’s far better to refuse or reuse plastic rather than recycle. At least then you know what happens to it! If you have to buy products in plastic packaging, try and get packaging you can reuse for other purposes.
many materials aren’t recycled is simply because local authorities can’t afford it. He said: “The industry and Government will have to come up with new ways to fund recycling and waste management in general to make it all economically viable.” Natural HDPE fetches the highest price. HDPE is what many bottles are made out of: it’s lightweight but strong, long lasting and weather resistant. Coloured bottles are worth less, because you can’t take the colour out, but they can still be recycled into fabrics and other materials. Lightweight plastics such as wrappers and clingfilm are hardly ever recycled as the material gets easily tangled in machinery, making it not economically viable to recycle. A lot of plastic is exported to be reprocessed. According to the National Packaging Waste Database (NPWD), in 2015, 560,000 tonnes of plastic packaging was exported, compared to 330,000 tonnes processed in the UK. In fact, up until recently, a lot of plastic waste was sent to China to be recycled; however, China recently banned importing waste, leaving the UK scrambling to find
alternative ways to recycle. Alec added: “The China problem has come from people abusing the system.” Tania Hitchcock, resource and recovery product quality manager for Grundon, believes that EU recycling rates have contributed to this problem. She said: “I believe we were trying to run before we could walk, the industry was expected to deal with too many different products that did not have established markets.” In 2018, the Royal Statistical Society’s statistic of the year was 90.5% of all plastic ever made has never been recycled. Around 79% of all plastic waste is either sitting in landfill or the natural environment, and roughly 12% has been incinerated. While, of course, it’s far better to recycle than to simply throw plastic away, our main focus needs to be on reducing our use in the first place. Anthony Foxlee-Brown, head of marketing and communications for Grundon said: “I think the onus is on all of us to think more about practical measures we can take to use recycled products in our day-to-day lives.”
By Maria Mellor
Become a plastic-free Marie Kondo
ust last year, the European Parliament voted for a complete ban on single-use plastics and saw the ban of plastic cutlery, plates and more. You may have swapped to an aluminium water bottle and bought a metal straw, but still find the odd takeaway container or stack of plastic cups in your cupboard. This doesnâ€™t have to be a problem. Repurposing is always better than recycling. With spring fast approaching, we decided that thereâ€™s no better time to transform your old containers into useful storage organisers. You can use all of these handy hacks to refresh any room in your homeget creative.
Plastic cups can be made into great holders for your stationary or makeup brushes. Simply paint the cup a colour of your choice - we used grey chalk paint - fill with dry rice, and put it on an office desk or vanity to stand pens, pencils or makeup brushes in. 2. Takeaway containers make brilliant drawer organisers. Remove the lid from the container and cut them into strips that slot inside the container. Use a glue gun to secure the strips to the bottom of the container so that it is divided, and paint the container a colour of your choice. 3. "My top tip uses old plastic bottles. Carefully cut them in half (lengthways) and lay them flat with the open side up in a drawer. You can use them as channels to store pairs of socks or rolled up tights.â€? 4. The toy holders from children's chocolate eggs can be reused as a cute storage solution. You can either use a small ball of blue tac to stand it up on a desk, or pierce a hole through the top and loop a piece of thread through so that it can be hung up in a bedroom or office space. Or, for a useful portable organiser, simply leave it as it is and throw it in your bag.
By Thea Jeffreys
Get tipsy but only on tinnies
Others making a change Take a look at what some of the other festivals around the UK are doing to reduce plastic on their grounds! Green Man Festival In addition to the reusable cups and the ban on plastic straws, festival attendees are encouraged to bring their own environmentally-friendly glitter. All the traders and face painters at the festival also use biodegradable glitter. Leftover tents are given to charities to help with refugees, and unused food is given to charities in the area. Boardmasters The festival has been supporting Surfers Against Sewage since 2001, and aim to get rid of single-use plastic at the festival by 2020. They have made the commitment to reducing the stock of bottled water, which should encourage all at the festival to use reusable water bottles; this also goes for the staff and the artists performing!
By Naomi Sanders
A green revolution at Boomtown
It’s nearly time to grab your tents and jam to the music, but one festival is taking a stand against plastic waste
s attendees descend onto festival grounds, reckless littering starts and plastic waste begins to build. According to research from Powerful Thinking, 23,500 tonnes of waste is produced every year at festivals, with only a third of that waste recycled. Boomtown, one of the largest festivals in the UK, has announced its sustainability campaign for this year’s festival. The Hampshire based fair is working with the Winchester Action on Climate Change. also known as WinACC. The festival has severely cut down on single-use plastic, and signed the Drastic to Plastic pledge in 2018. A representative from Boomtown said: “We will strive to be zero waste and where everyone reuses, recycles and there’s no such thing as single use or a throwaway society”. Boomtown has invested in water refill stations and Boomtown-branded reusable
bottles to eliminate the need for single-use water bottles at the festival. They are also introducing reusable cups with a twist: these little metal tins you can get engraved and keep as a reminder of your time at the festival. In addition, the festival will prioritise hiring sustainable food vendors that will also sell free range and vegan/vegetarian options, served on compostable plates. Any leftovers will also be sent to food banks to tackle food wasteage. Festivals like Boomtown help show that a large organisation reduce plastic waste without impacting customer satisfaction. With any luck, the weekend spent at festivals like these can show attendees how it is possible to reduce how much plastic they use. Maybe they’ll even bring that plastic-free life home with them long after the music and festivities have died down.
No fmoreestival fails
Get yourself festival ready with these backpack essentials
he contents of a festival backpack may contain more plastic than you could ever imagine. Making a few swaps can go a long way on your journey to becoming plastic-free over the festival season. Enjoy yourself this summer, but don’t forget that these single-use products build up and don’t just disappear once the weekend is over and you’ve gone home.
Stand out from the crowd
With companies like Eco Stardust and The Gypsy Shrine now doing biodegradable alternatives for extremely reasonable prices, there is no excuse not to use them - and you can still look fantastic and fabulous at festivals.
The Amazing MicroFibre Cleansing Cloth is a more environmentally friendly alternative to a face wipe. It is small and easy to pack, and by just adding water you are able to remove your makeup with ease. Instead of using face wipes as a shower substitute, get a bar of soap and try out those festival showers for a change.
A cream deodorant made of 100% natural products and is both alumunium free and vegan is the perfect thing for your weekend. Pit Putty comes in both a full size and a travel size version, so you are able to give it a go over the weekend without taking up too much space in your backpack.
A tin is a great way to store products like your shampoo bar and soap for the festival. It helps the products last longer and is an easy reusable solution for storing your washing products. Lush do a selection of different shapes and sizes of tins.
By Lydia Caunce
Easy to pack into your backpack and even better - they’re plastic-free
What to do with your tents If you decide that you don’t want to take your tent home to reuse next year, don’t just leave it behind in the field. Instead, take it to one of the many charity tents. Volunteers come to festivals to salvage reusable goods, such as tents and sleeping bags, and donate them to organisations like the Scouts and Guides. Leaving tents behind leads to them being disposed of in landfills. Have fun at festivals but don’t forget your responsibility to your planet!
Cleaning our coastlines
The majority of beach litter is plastic. With the right tools and knowledge, we’ve got the power to change that
lastic was only created 70 years ago, but since then it has been estimated there is around 6.3bn tonnes of plastic waste globally. Only 9% of this waste is recycled and 79% ends up in landfills or on our beautiful coast and countryside. Reducing plastic at home is a great way to get started, but it doesn’t reverse the damage done by years of over-consumption. According to National Geographic,
73% of beach litter is plastic. Across the globe, organisations are encouraging their communities to get involved in clean-ups. The initiatives serve two purposes: to clear beach waste and to educate people about where their waste ends up.
Even on a small beach during the winter months, it’s eye-opening exactly how much waste you can find along the
coast. We can pick up beer cans, plastic bottles and plastic lighters on our walk along this stretch of coast, and dog toys are another large contributor. All along the beach, tennis balls and frisbee remains are left wedged between rocks, lost by owners and their companions. Other waste includes tyres, food waste bins, surfing fins and shoes. National sustainability charity Surfers Against Sewage is working with towns, villages and cities across the
Claire’s steps to success 01 Find a beach - the larger and
more remote beaches are usually the most in need of a tidy up.
collecting rubbish on the beach and ask where you should leave what you’ve collected on your beach clean.
Complete a risk assessment. The 02 Check the tides! Use an online 05 Marine Conservation society have a tide checker to make sure you’re there two or more hours after high tide.
good one available online.
ask for permission to run your beach clean (this is usually your local council).
Advertise online - community 03 Contact the beach owner and 06 Facebook groups are a great way to get
04 Check who’s responsible for
07 Get cleaning! Make sure you keep an eye on the tides so you don’t get caught out.
Be prepared to get down and dirty with plastic waste
Stand out from the crowd UK to tackle this issue. They run the Big Spring Beach Clean (6-14 April) and The Autumn Beach Clean (20-27 October), as well as more regular local clean-ups. They also founded the social media campaign #MiniBeachClean, which encourages people to make an impact in their local area, no matter how small.
Creating a community
Sometimes tackling plastic waste can be a solitary task, so community events are a great way to meet like-minded waste warriors. Claire Jackman, who runs Vale Coastal Clean Up in South Wales says, “Public awareness is key. People know plastic pollution is a problem, but they don’t understand the extent of it until they come down to the beach to help volunteer at one of our events, then go
home thinking about their own singleuse plastic consumption.” Claire started Vale Coastal Clean Up last year to make a difference in her area. She thinks it’s important to get children involved. She explains:
“Children are key here, we need to educate them young” Claire says it’s important to have a hands on approach: “We encourage them to get involved in sorting the recycling and keeping a log each week to learn about waste and recycling.
Then they can get their parents involved in trying to shop smarter each week to reduce their single-use plastic consumption.”
How can you get involved?
Larger scale campaigns also exist for those who are hesitant to organise their own community beach clean. The Marine Conservation Society’s website has a postcode search to find existing coastal clean ups near you. They also organise a yearly event, The Great British Beach Clean (this year occuring 20-23 September) to encourage new volunteers. Whether you’re cleaning on your own, with a few friends, or with a larger organisation, the outcome is the same. Although cutting down plastic waste is a great lifestyle change, we can’t ignore the pre-existing pollution on our coastlines.
Words by Corrie David
How to become a beach clean expert Everything you need to know to become a coastline superhero
Choose your level
Solo spruce up: Next time you’re down on
the beach, challenge yourself to clear three pieces of plastic from the coastline.
Team tidy: Get a group of friends together
for a team clean-up. It doesn’t have to be a three hour excursion, but it could help others see the issue on our coastlines.
Community clean: Set up a facebook group
Essential kit Bags and buckets:
Bin bags contribute to waste in the long run. A rope bag or a bucket is a more suitable choice.
Pocket knife: A lot of ropes and fishing wire gets caught jammed between rocks, a knife can be useful to cut them loose.
Trowel/Spade: A trowel would be perfect to
for people to organise a community beach clean. Make sure you check the tide is low to cover the most space and encourage people to invite their frriends.
clear tricky embedded litter.
Litter pickers: Bending over to pick up plastic
If you’re feeling motivated, follow Claire Jackman’s beach clean tips above to set up your own movement in your local area.
Bring some heavy duty ones with waterproof coating to keep your hands toasty.
can really put a strain on your back, so bring one of these to help you keep going for longer.
Some teabags contain hidden plastic, so loose tea is a great option for the morning
By Thea Jeffreys & Lydia Caunce
hen you wake up every morning, what’s the first thing you reach for? Some of us switch off our aggressive alarm clocks and drag ourselves into the shower, hoping the warm water will gently wake us up. Others grab a quick coffee and head straight to the gym for an early morning workout before a busy day. Whatever type of morning person you are, what many of us don’t always notice is the huge amount of plastic we use in our normal morning routines. Some of our biggest plastic consumption can take place during these early hours; whether it’s using a bottled shower gel or a toothbrush that takes decades to break down. So, here at canvas & glass we’ve devised a list of the few little changes you can make to your morning ritual that can make a big difference to your plastic footprint. We’ve got some tips to transform your routine from plastic-filled to plasticfree, with a list of the best products from showering to shaving.
Morning routine Jump in the shower
Bar shampoos contain less water than gels so they last longer, and don’t require plastic packaging. This is a simple swap to make during your usual weekly supermarket shop, or you can visit somewhere like Lush for a more luxurious option. Seanik, Lush, £7.50
Store your bar soap and shampoos in open soap dishes to make them last longer
If you’re addicted to hair conditioner, try using watered-down apple cider vinegar in the shower as a hair rinse for shiny, supple locks.
Not just a pretty face
Brush your teeth Around 3.6bn plastic toothbrushes are used every year with roughly 80% of these ending up floating in the ocean. By exchanging your plastic toothbrush for a bamboo brush, you can reduce this pollution. Bali Brushes are a great alternative made from natural cellulose fibre and they’re 100% biodegradable too. Amazon, £8.99 for four. You could also try making your own toothpaste to save on plastic packaging. Combine 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, a tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda and 15-20 drops of peppermint oil.
How do you like your plastic in the morning? Beauty with benefits Makeup is one of the most challenging areas of everyday life to reduce your plastic consumption. Luckily, some of our favourite big brands have schemes that’ll help you dispose of their packaging.
Kiehl's Take your empty full-size containers back to a Kiehl’s store and you’ll get a stamp for each one. Once you’ve received 10 stamps, you can choose any travel size product you like and take it home for free.
Lush Take just five of Lush’s little black pots back to your local branch and they’ll be melted down and made into new pots. You’ll also get a fresh face mask as a thank you.
Homemade shaving cream stores best in a mason jar. Keep it in the fridge for a cooling shave Using your own recipes is a cheap and easy way to save the planet
A clean shave It has been estimated around 2bn razors are thrown away every year, so switching to a bamboo or metal razor can drastically reduce contribution to this waste. Our favourite is the Bulldog Bamboo Razor, which features a natural bamboo handle and tempered steel blades - even its packaging is recycled. Boots, £8 To make a plastic-free shaving cream, mix together 1 tablespoon of shea butter with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and heat until melted. Add 2 teaspoons of olive oil and leave to cool. Using an electric whisk or hand held whisk, whip until soft peaks form and stir in a few drops of your favourite essential oil.
Finishing touches A great alternative to cotton buds is Hydrophil’s Cotton & Bamboo Buds. Biodegradable and packaged in a recycled cardboard box, these cotton buds not only eliminate plastic waste but help third world countries, with 10% of all profits going to charity. Ecco Verde, £3.60
Becky Shuck quit her job at LUSH to make a difference from her own kitchen
By Kirstie Sutherland
ecky Shuck is no stranger to the plasticfree movement. A PR executive from Walsall, last year she decided to make a difference and set up her own cosmetics company, Stript. The world of cosmetics is laden with far more plastic than we may initially think. That’s where the idea for Stript initially came from. Becky’s company prides itself on creating and selling beauty products that are not only plastic-free, but also biodegradable and cruelty-free, all at an affordable price. However, this wasn’t a sudden realisation Becky has been ethically and environmentally conscious from an early age. “Growing up, my family was quite big on charity work and environmental work, so it was kind of always in me I guess. And the older you get, the more you notice things and the impact they’re making,” she says, explaining the reason behind setting up her own company.
Leaving LUSH behind
Having previously worked for years as a supervisor at LUSH Cosmetics, selling ‘naked’ products (sold without packaging) and working on campaigns to make the world a better place, the specific impact of plastic waste had been on Becky’s mind for a very long time.
Meet our folk “Working and being around like-minded people, you end up doing your own research into things. It’s quite amazing just how much plastic we use, and how much of it is single-use as well,” she says.
“It’s quite amazing just how much plastic we use” Eventually, Becky was inspired to delve into the eco-friendly beauty world herself. After some extensive research, Becky set up Stript Cosmetics in August 2018, with help from her mother and boyfriend. “I really like cosmetics, but being in your bathroom and taking a look around, you start to realise how much plastic is being generated in that industry. A lot of it is stuff you can’t reuse, like hard coloured plastics which are practically impossible to recycle” she explains.
Solid progress She initially began on Facebook, setting up a business profile and advertising to friends and family. As more sales were made, Becky set about launching her first official range of products in October. This included colourful bath bombs and solid soaps, all made from natural, kind to skin ingredients. “Bath bombs are very popular, which is good because they don’t really need packaging and so they usually come in a reusable paper bag. The popularity of the solid soaps has been really interesting, as a lot of people are usually more hesitant to move away from shower gels. I’m hoping that’s a trend that continues and we can look into more soaps and perhaps even solid scrubs in the near future,” Becky tells us.
the best ingredients she can find, organic ingredients at good quality prices to ensure her customers are able to go plastic-free at a more affordable rate. “It’s all very well being plastic-free but if you’ve got rubbish ingredients, you’re counteracting yourself,” she says. People have been very receptive to Stript, but what’s next on the cards? “I’m hoping that we’ll be adding some more products this year,” she tells us. “We’re currently working on a lip scrub, and after that, there will be a lip balm. At the moment we’re trying to find the most suitable packaging option, either cardboard lip balm tubes or an aluminium tin, but it’s all about trying to find what is more in line with our ethos.” With a line full of organic ingredients that are all handmade, cruelty-free and completely plastic-free too, it seems like Becky is definitely onto a winner.
Wipe your conscience clean with our plastic-free facewipe picks
We love the funky patterns on these unique reusable wipes. Handmade cotton cleansing wipes, 99p, etsy.com
Becky’s skincare hacks “My best skincare hack would be to buy some reusable face wipes. You can buy them online or at Etsy. Essentially, they’re cotton rounds that are usually a bit bigger than your average cotton pads, but they’re far more absorbent and then they come in a little bag so you can put them in with your weekly washes.”
These pads have a special exfoliating surface too. Hemp exfoliating reusable face pads, £8.99 for 7, etsy.com
Having a side hussle isnt always easy, but combining her creativity and passion for protecting the planet is worth it, says Becky
Becky’s scrubs don’t contain harmful microbeads
Guilt-free products are the future Becky’s aim with Stript is to ensure that people can still use and enjoy cosmetics, but without feeling guilty for it. Her products are designed to make people feel they are making a more conscious effort, while also reducing any harmful impact on the environment. She also strives to use
Keep your conscience squeaky clean with soaps from Stript
Not just a pretty face
and where to find them
Plastic-free beauty products donâ€™t have to be hard to find. Here are a few to add to your collection
0 1 Keeping it Natural
02 Clean-faced Cosmetics
03 Kjaer Weis
04 Zao Cosmetics
A way to find good quality cosmetics brands is through online marketplaces like Etsy - and you can support small businesses at the same time. Keeping It Natural is an independent cosmetics company that uses tin packaging. This zero waste make-up line prides itself on its natural, vegan and cruelty-free ingredients. Keeping It Natural is a US-based store that offers international shipping.
Kjaer Weis has made a name for itself as a high-end plastic-free cosmetics manufacturer. Each of their products is encased in metal packaging, and is designed to be completely refillable. Although Kjaer Weis may make more of a dent in your wallet than other available brands, their refill system means that this brand is a great one to invest in initially and add to as you build your kit.
Another Etsy shop, Clean-Faced Cosmetics is prides itself on being completely vegan and cruelty-free. Clean-Faced Cosmetics products are all made by hand, meaning that some of them can be customised to suit your own personal preferences. The company, like many other plastic-free brands, use tin and glass packaging exclusively, so that you can completely reduce your plastic-free waste.
Created in Europe, natural brand Zao uses primarily bamboo packaging. Zaoâ€™s packaging is not single-use and can be reused over and over again. Although they use the odd bit of plastic in their packaging, Zao have announced that they are making the switch to biodegradable cardboard packaging. They hope to have made the full switch by the end of 2019, so By Naomi Sanders are a great brand to keep an eye on.
Behind the brand:
Sheâ€™s working with some of the biggest global fashion brands ensuring theyâ€™re making conscious choices every day: introducing Jazz
Jazz Singh-Khaira 21
Jazz connects the VF headquarters with their workers across the globe
etween September and December 2018, VF Corporation took over £3bn in revenue. VF is the company responsible for superbrands The North Face and Timberland and, together with associates like Jazz, it’s making big changes within the fashion industry. Jazz Singh-Khaira, 30, manages the Worker and Community Development programme at VF. For her, this means tackling issues within the corporation’s supply chains. “We work with suppliers to implement programmes that support the workers - they call it doing well by doing good,” says Jazz. By 2025, VF aspires to have improved the lives of two million workers. In the same time, the corporation plans to reduce the impact of its key materials by 35% and source half of all nylon and polyester from recycled materials.
A conscious corporation
Parent company VF isn’t well-known, unlike some of its global brands. They aren’t boosting their profile using responsible initiatives as PR, explains Jazz. She says, “We just see [the corporation’s sustainability goals] as being the right thing to do, not necessarily something that we need to talk about.” While many large companies will run their philanthropy projects through a foundation, at VF the Worker and Community Development programme is funded by the corporation itself. The programme reinforces the reliability of the company’s supply chain and, as an integral part of the business, it won’t be losing funding any time soon. “VF is a very responsible brand,” says Jazz. In terms of climate action, Jazz spoke about reaching their goals and the “things that didn’t necessarily exist before,” including creating new supply chains for recycled content. In the fashion industry especially, corporations like VF are starting to look at circular economy models. Circular economy models, according to Jazz, are products which aren’t just purchased and thrown away. She says: “It’s more this idea where you’re not just taking something, wearing it a little bit and then throwing it away, but actually going for a more circular approach where it goes back to the company and we’re able to sell it on or rent it out.” By 2030, VF hopes to be a leading operator for circular business models and manage rental and repurposing initiatives within its brands.
The environmental impact of large-scale companies like VF is undeniable and, for Jazz, this isn’t a secret. “We do have a big footprint and with that comes a responsibility. But there are a lot of different stakeholders that need to play their part in order for us to achieve a cleaner, greener and better world,” she says.
“VF is a very responsible brand” Jazz touched on the roles of governments and businesses and, for the latter, highlighted the important role of the consumer. If consumers cease to buy plastic products, she explains, their actions will pressure the industry to shift.
Jazz mentions: Style Theory A subscription service tackling fast-fashion in Singapore - where she now lives with her fiancé Charles - promises ‘unlimited designer dresses’ delivered to your door. It’s a rental service for dresses and members don’t even have to dry clean the items, they simply send them back once they’ve been worn and exchange them for new ones. If you’d like to get your hands on rental designer dresses in the UK, check out frontrow.uk.com. You can get dresses, blazers and other formal wear for up to five days at a time.
Meet our folk She speaks about products like shampoo and mayonnaise: “fastmoving consumer goods”, she calls them. “They used to come in glass jars. I think there’s a big opportunity for businesses in that product category to shift back towards those, maybe less convenient, but more sustainable packaging options,” she says.
“I will not buy it”
Jazz’s changes for good
Even the smallest change can make a huge difference
Jazz believes there needs to be some legislation in the UK that will force companies to invest in renewable and biodegradable products. Bali, for example, is banning all single-use plastics this year.
Changing for good
Products packaged in plastic are the ones Jazz is purchasing less and less. She explains how she makes purchasing decisions depending on what’s got less plastic and says that she now avoids buying takeaway food too, unless it comes in biodegradable packaging. “When I’m in the shop, if I’m in the fruit and vegetable section and everything’s wrapped in tonnes of plastic and styrofoam, I will not buy it. I’d rather go to a market where I can just buy things and put them in my own bag,” she says.
Lush shampoo bars “They smell great and they come in tins, they’re also really easy to travel with” lush.co.uk, £7.50 each
By Lucy Smith
Humble Brush “I like this brand in particular because they’ve got a nice social ethos behind them. They give toothbrushes back to people that don’t have access to dental care” shop.thehumbleco.co, £3.50 for one
Natural bamboo make-up remover pads
“I love those, you just chuck them in the washing machine - they’re convenient and they save you money”
Jazz opts for sunglasses with a wooden frame
Etsy.com, £7 for 10
Make simple swaps to your lunch to send a big message to the food industry
t can be tricky to eliminate plastic from your daily routines and rituals, but one of the easiest things to change is your lunch. By making a simple swap, it’s possible to change our consumer habits and make a stand against big corporations. The food-to-go industry is worth over £16bn, according to a report by the Institute of Grocery Distribution (IGD). Supermarkets occupy £1.6bn of the market, with food-to-go specialists like Pret a Manger topping the table at £5bn. The IGD predicts that the market will expand rapidly over the next few years to £23.5bn by 2022 - that’s pretty huge. This quickly growing market means more people are opting to buy food on the go instead of making it at home or eating at a sit-down restaurant. Essentially, the choice we’re making as consumers is contributing to the growth of this market. Unfortunately, this doesn’t come without consequences for the planet. Just one person who buys a typical lunch on the go from a supermarket every day of
the working week will use 365kg of plastic over the course of 20 years. That’s more than the weight of two silverback gorillas. By making one simple swap - making your own lunch instead of buying it from a supermarket - you could change your plastic footprint dramatically. You could also save yourself a whole lot of money - this issue’s lunch recipe works out at less than £1.50 per portion, which is happy news for the planet and your bank balance. There are many ways to exercise your agency as a consumer and change the way big companies operate. Changing consumer habits have already influenced policies on plastic straws, black plastic packaging and much more. Waitrose have stopped selling single use straws, and most supermarkets have stopped using single use plastic bags. The reason isn’t because they wanted to - it’s because consumers asked for it. From simple swaps like making your own lunch to leaving plastic packaging at the till, you can make a difference.
What percentage of plastic produced by your favourite supermarket is recylable?
81% 75% 77% 71% Morrisons
By Louella Berryman
when you shop
It’s important to hold supermarkets and specialist cafes like Pret a Manger to account. If you’re feeling extra motivated, you can take action by joining a community activist group and carrying out a ‘plastic attack’. Groups that carry out ‘plastic attacks’ do their shopping in their usual supermarket, but instead of taking their shopping straight home, they unwrap all plastic packaging and leave it behind at the till. Christophe Steyeart, co-host of the Global Plastic Attack Facebook group says when people change their way of consuming, the industry must comply.
"Wake up businesses, the world is demanding change"
Make it 1.
Set a large pan of water on to boil, when the water is bubbling add a pinch of salt and 250g of your favourite pasta
your meal deal
In the meantime, whizz together 25g nuts (any will do), 1 clove of garlic, a handful of fresh basil or parsley and 250g fresh spinach. Add a good glug olive oil and a squeeze of lemon to loosen the pesto. Season to taste with salt and pepper
rt lbe A : x bo
o lu bo
Chop 150g fresh cherry tomatoes in half and set aside
When the pasta is cooked, drain and return to the pan. Add the spinach pesto and stir it gently through the pasta with the chopped cherry tomatoes
your simple swaps with #WeArePlasticFree to be featured in next monthâ€™s issue
Adjust the taste to your liking by adding more salt, pepper or lemon juice
No packaging? No problem. It’s easier to find plastic-free options in your local supermarket than you think
Fruit & Veg
Morrison’s has recently introduced 100% recyclable paper bags to hold all their loose produce, including fruit and veg and in general 81% of their packaging is recyclable. In an innovative new initiative, Waitrose has recently trialled punnets for Duchy tomatoes made from their own leaves.
Snacks & Treats
Some supermarkets, such as Lidl, offer a selection of nuts and seeds that you can take home in your own packaging – after paying, of course! But, if you fancy something a bit more indulgent, most UK supermarkets such as Tesco or Sainsbury’s have a bakery section where you can pick up a croissant completely packaging-free.
Meat & Fish
Morrison’s is trying to encourage their customers to go packaging-free by rewarding them with 100 loyalty points every time they use their own containers for deli, meat and fish. Waitrose is also committed to getting rid of their black plastic packaging for all their products, including meat and fish, by the end of 2019.
By Elis Williams
Next issue ...
Kayaking in Kerala Tourism generates a large income for many countries, however can we do something more meaningful on our visits? Elena Proffitt has opened a non-profit organisation where tourists can combine kayaking with cleaning
APRIL EDITION out 26/03/19
Looking inside the UKâ€™s plastic-free villages for innovation and inspiration The best plastic-free destinations for your guilt-free getaway We look into the newest bamboo sports supports revolutionising the active world
A magazine providing you with all the tips and tricks to help you live plastic-free. Featuring interesting think-pieces, interviews with peo...
Published on Mar 5, 2019
A magazine providing you with all the tips and tricks to help you live plastic-free. Featuring interesting think-pieces, interviews with peo...