10 Easy Zero Waste Swap Outs to Implement
By Jessica Cheng
Is living waste-free possible? Fortunately for us in Hong Kong, the zero-waste movement is gaining increasing momentum as brands and organizations have stepped up their efforts in raising awareness on our mammoth waste problem. Did you know that our city has nearly run out of space for its garbage? As a city, we dispose 15,000 tons of trash EVERY DAY… that is the equivalent of throwing out the Brooklyn Bridge each night and still having a couple hundred tons to spare. The problem is that we are now running out of space for our trash!
So how can we do our bit? What brands & products are championing this lifestyle change? Below, we share 10 actionable steps to help you get started on a no-waste lifestyle. The first step to living a more sustainable lifestyle is to take small steps. Remember to think of this as a journey and not a destination!
1. BRING YOUR OWN CONTAINERS | Zero Waste Grocery Store
This picture is from Live Zero.
Live Zero is the first zero-waste, packaging-free and bulk-buy grocery store in Hong Kong. We have to stop using single-use plastic bags and shops like Live Zero are encouraging a sustainable living and reducing plastic waste. There is a range of items available to shop; from plastic-free and paper-free lifestyle items, beauty and household items and their massive inventory of bulk food. Expect to see organic pasta, herbs, spices, flours, nuts, oil, vinegar and more! Don’t forget to bring your own container to shop at Live Zero, because Live Zero is giving us no excuse to shop with plastic.
2. Carry Reusable Bag | Organic Cotton Bag
This picture is from Pyaar.
Organic cotton bag from Pyaar is always a great alternative to single-use plastic bags. Take these reusable neutral cotton bags grocery shopping next time! They are machine washable, reusable and come in net and voile. Did we mention they’re also biodegradable?!
3. GO CUPLESS | Reusable Coffee Cup
This picture is from Ecoffee Cup.
If you are like most of us, you need that caffeine kick to get your day going. This daily consumption results in more than 100 billion single-use coffee cups ending up in landfills each year. In light of this, Ecoffee Cup is specifically designed for coffee and tea lovers! It’s reusable and made of natural bamboo fibre, one of the world’s most sustainable resources. Take your own cup/mug with you on your next trip to the cafe.
They are light, sturdy, fully dishwasher safe and come with a leak-proof lid.
4. EAT ON THE GO | Beeswax Food Wrap
This picture is from Plastic-Free HK.
Beeswax food wrap from Plastic-Free HK is an awesome alternative to wrap your snacks/lunch or to cover your potluck dish to keep your food fresh! It is made of beeswax, tree resin, organic jojoba oil infused into a hemp and organic cotton cloth.
They are washable, reusable, antibacterial, breathable, compostable and come in 3 sizes for different food items.
5. SAY NO TO PLASTIC CONTAINERS | Stainless Steel Lunch Box Set
This picture is from Plastic-Free HK.
Besides using beeswax food wrap to wrap your lunch, the three-in-one stainless steel lunch box set from Plastic-Free HK is also an easy alternative to pack your lunch! Keep them all separated and safe from being squished!
They are dishwasher safe and leak-proof.
6. USE DURABLE PRODUCT | Bamboo Straw
This picture is from Etsy.
Bamboo is known as the fastest growing plant on the earth, with an incredible speed of growing up one meter within 24 hours! It also releases 30% more oxygen than ordinary trees and is considered a critical element in the balance between oxygen and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. This makes all bamboo products environmentally friendly. Say NO to plastic straw and get yourself a bamboo straw from Bamboa which you can use forever!
7. USE BIODEGRADABLE PRODUCTS | Bamboo Toothbrush
This picture is from Now No Waste.
You might be wondering what else can be made of bamboo? Surprisingly, a bamboo toothbrush! Bamboo toothbrush from Now No Waste is made of 100% biodegradable bamboo and soft bristles. It is even more durable than a plastic toothbrush!
They are compostable and come in different sizes and colors.
8. USE FABRIC HANKY | Handmade Handkerchief
This picture is from The Chief Project.
Can you imagine that we can save 100,000 trees a year if we use one less tissue a day? Handkerchief from The Chief Project is 100% made of cotton and 100% biodegradable. They aim to reduce the enormous carbon footprint in the fashion industry by using high-quality fabrics which were going to be discarded. The Chief Project is working towards building a sustainable living where handkerchiefs can act as an effective substitute to tissue.
They are washable, reusable and come in different colors and patterns. Enjoy their selection!
9. CARRY REUSABLE CUTLERY | Bamboo Utensils
This picture is from Bambu.
This bamboo cutlery set from Bambu is small, light, strong, and comes in handy to carry around! Made without glues or lacquers, it is naturally resistant to picking up food flavors. Carry everywhere these utensils to work, picnic, travel in place of plastic cutlery!
They are washable and reusable.
10. SWITCH TO A TRASH-FREE PERIOD | Menstrual Cups
This picture is from Anna Jade.
A lot of waste is produced from manufacturing pantyliners or tampons, especially with the packing and shipping process! Made in the UK with international recognition, menstrual cups from Anna Jade is the user-friendly tampon alternative you need. It also comes in plastic-free packaging with it’s own fair-trade unbleached organic cotton storage bag and instructions printed on 100% recycled paper. Try out the menstrual cup and let us know what you think.
They are reusable and come in two different sizes with adjustable stem for an ideal fit.