Clean your home, the plastic free way

It’s the last day of Plastic Free July and we’ve got five quick and easy plastic swaps you can make when cleaning your house.

After our bathrooms, we reckon that cupboard under the sink where we keep all our cleaning products is the next biggest plastic party, so here are a few of our favourite alternatives.…..

  1. Plastic Free and compostable cloths

Most washing up cloths and sponges contain plastic and have to just be chucked in the bin. But if you do a bit of looking around you will find some great alternatives that come plastic free. There are ones that simply contain no plastic or there are ones that can even be composted. All of them can also be washed so can be used over and over again.

If you can’t find these around town – check out online shops like Boubalou, Plastic Freedom or Turtle Friendly

  • Wooden brushes and metal scour pads

For tougher spots wooden brushes with replaceable heads are a great way to go as there’s no plastic and much less waste. These are available from All Good, The Eco Shop, Harrison and Dunn and Great Casterton Garden Centre. And you can find scour pads that are not cased in two lots of plastic, like many of them are in the supermarket, in the online shops mentioned above.

  • Refill cleaning products

When it comes to the cleaning products themselves, some of the more eco-friendly companies do use recycled plastic bottles (Ecover, Bio-D and Method to name a few), but you can go for refill again. Fill and Miniml both do a brilliant selection of products and they’re available at All Good, Refill Revolution and The Eco Shop. What we particularly love about these two brands is that they reuse the larger plastic containers the refill shops have in store, so there really is a huge reduction in plastic waste.

  • Dissolvable cleaning sachets

If you haven’t tried the small sachets filled with a cleaning detergent concentrate (eg window cleaner or all purpose), they are definitely worth a try. You simply put the sachet in a spray bottle of water, shake it until the whole thing dissolves and you then have a full bottle of whichever cleaning product you chose. No plastic bottle, no plastic packaging. Ocean Saver has a great selection.

  • And finally…..laundry. If you’re looking for some decent alternatives to that big plastic bottle of liquid washing detergent. Again Fill and Miniml have some great options. You could also look at using an Eco Egg – which you just stick in the washing machine and the pellets inside create the detergent. You just have to top up the pellets every so often.

That’s it. Our top 5 cleaning swaps. We hope you give a few a try…..

Can we really go plastic free in the bathroom?

The bathroom is one of the easiest places to find plastic free swaps – here are our top 5 to get you started…..

Shower Gel

The quickest way to cut back on single use plastic in the bathroom is to kick your shower gel habit. There are so many amazing soaps now available without plastic wrapping too – Faith in Nature is one that is readily available in supermarkets and in Silver Lane Health Food shop (and Annabel at All Good Market reminded me about Alter/Native soaps too, available locally). But there are tonnes of independent shops online selling all natural soaps too. Conchus is a favourite.

If you really can’t ditch the shower gel – why not try refill instead. All the refill shops in Stamford (All Good, The Eco Shop and Refill Revolution) all offer shower gel which smells amazing from brands such as Faith in Nature again or try Miniml.

Shampoo & Conditioner

There are now some really good shampoo bars which are super easy to use – just like a bar of soap and they are readily available in supermarkets or even Holland and Barratt on the high street. Eco Warrior shampoo bar is great as are the ones from Ethique. Again you can look online to find independents producing beautiful shampoo (and conditioner) bars.

But if a shampoo bar is a step too far, definitely give refill a go as a very handy alternative to buying new bottles every time. Just take your empty shampoo bottle to a local refill shop and fill it up. Fill do lovely options and they’re made in Northamptonshire. Job done.

Toothpaste & Toothbrushes

Toothpaste tubes – we get through so many of these each year! Instead of buying the plastic ones, you could look at pastes that come in a jar or toothpaste tablets. There are plenty of online stores that stock these (and lots of other plastic free items). Or if you’re just heading to the supermarket you could try euthymol which comes in a recyclable aluminium tube.

Bamboo and recycled plastic toothbrushes are now available all over the place. If you prefer an electric toothbrush there are now options here versus having to chuck out the plastic head. There are ones made of bamboo from LiveCoco that are worth a try.


If you haven’t already, why not give a metal safety razor a go. They’re an expensive outlay but they last a lifetime and perform really well. Plastic Freedom have a good range….

And finally….loo roll

And finally, there’s toilet roll. Why all brands feel the need to wrap the loo roll in plastic bags is beyond me, but they do….however, again there are options. You can buy in bulk and have toilet roll delivered to you in a box without any plastic. If this is not an option (storage may be an issue or the cost), there are companies like Green Cane that use wrappers that can be recycled for the 4 packs of toilet roll. The Eco Shop sells them or you could go in with friend and order a big box of them.

Plastic Free Stamford’s top five easy plastic swaps

Over this past year, single use plastic has been even more of a feature of our every day lives. As the country starts to re-emerge from lockdown restrictions, here are our five quickest, easiest and cheapest ways to reduce the amount of single use plastic you use when you’re out and about:  

1. A reusable cup

Available pretty much everywhere, reusable cups for your on the go coffees and teas are a quick, easy and relatively cheap way to reduce your single use plastic. If you think about the coffee you grab on the way to work or after the school run and then one as a treat in the afternoon, you’re quickly looking at 40 cups a month that just sit in landfill.

And with many cafes offering discounts for bringing your own cup, you could quickly save enough to pay for the reusable cup!

2. A water bottle

This doesn’t have to be a swanky rose gold metal drinks bottle – it could just be the take out water bottle you bought the other day refilled again and again. With many places offering to fill water bottles with tap water for free (once restrictions have lifted they will be able to do this again), you could again save yourself a load of money as well as saving the planet.

3.  A shopping bag

Many of us do this already – certainly since the charge for bags came in, but making sure we always have one to hand when we head out will mean those last minute impulse buys will not involve single use plastic. 

4. A couple of old bread bags

If you have a few small bags tucked away, you will be surprised how often you use them – your breakfast croissant from the café or supermarket doesn’t need to go into a single use plastic (or paper) bag. Or grabbing some fruit and veg from the market stall as you go past – use these. You can use small cloth bags that are readily available but a few old plastic bread bags will do the trick just as well – reusing what you have is always a win!

5. Snacks from home

If you have kids, you’ll know that as soon as you step out the door, you’ll be hounded for snack, after snack, after snack. The costs can add up and so can the litter. Trying filling a tupperware with a few biscuits or homemade popcorn before you go – this will be so much better than single serving packs.

If you can remember one, two or even all five of the above each time you head out, you will be making a massive difference to the amount of single use plastic we get through.