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Sometimes, being eco-friendly seems to cost more but it doesn’t always have to be that way. In honour of Plastic Free July, Arabella from Exeter Baby Activities shares 7 frugal ways your family can use less plastic and save money. Fabulous for your wallet and the planet!
Make friends with your local fruit and veg stall or greengrocers. If you can visit a farmers’ market so much the better but most towns have a local fruit and veg stall. Avoiding supermarket produce means no more shrink-wrapped veggies or fruit in plastic trays. And you’ll get much better quality food at a fraction of the price. Plus you’ll be able to buy exactly what you need, so no more wasted money or food!
Plan your Meals
Menu plan your meals a week at a time. It may feel like a chore at the time but menu planning will save you a fortune; huge amounts of wasted food and loads of extra plastic as you won’t need to make use of convenience stores and their plastic wrapped food.
Switch back to bar soap for family hand washing. It’s so much cheaper and longer lasting than liquid soap (anyone else have a kid that gets through a whole bottle of soap in 2 days?) Plus there’s no plastic at all!
If you really need to use liquid soap, why not make your own and reuse the plastic bottles you already have? Here’s a super simple recipe that the kids love and takes less than 30 minutes. (I bought a bottle of plain glycerine from the chemist 5 years ago and it’s still going strong as you only need a teaspoon or 2 each time.)
Switch to Cloth
Consider switching to cloth. Disposable nappies use around a cup of oil per nappy just to make the plastic liner! And cloth nappies are so much cheaper – the average family saves around £500 per baby by making the switch. If you want to know more about real nappies, The Reusable Information Service has all the info you need.
Related Post: Getting Started with Cloth Sanitary Pads – FAQ’s
Cut down on wet wipes – for cleaning babies, your face and your home. Wet wipes are a HUGE problem on our beaches; cost £millions in blocked drains and cost the average family £250 per year. Buy a couple sets of cheap washable wipes and some good quality dish cloths for under £20 and you’ll save a fortune while protecting our environment.
Related Post: Homemade Reusable Face Wipes
Make your Own
Make your own baby food. Save the expensive and landfill producing plastic pouches for special occasions and give your baby bite sized portions of your own healthy meals. Baby led weaning is the cheaper, less stressful and less plastic producing way to feed your baby.
Invest in Reusable Coffee Cup
And a bonus treat for the grownups. Being conscious of our footprint doesn’t have to be all dull and worthy and we all deserve a treat now and then! If you need your cheeky coffee fix to get you through the day, invest in a reusable coffee cup and you’ll get up to 25p off your takeaway drink at the bigger chains. Helping to save some of the 2.5 BILLION cups thrown away every year in the UK.
Arabella is a 40 something mum of two strong girls aged 14 and 6, living a life of beaches, pets, cycling and green things in Exeter with Mr Husband.
A lawyer by training, Arabella runs Exeter Baby Activities, the ultimate guide for families in Exeter. She gets a real kick out of sparking connections; putting local businesses in touch with families; spreading the news about exciting family friendly events and celebrating all that is fabulous about glorious Devon.
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