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Trying to live a waste free life can be really hard, but it’s also incredibly rewarding. There are so many items that we only use once, throw away, and then those items end up in landfills. That isn’t what we want. If you ever have to use a disposable item, you can always recycle them to try to lessen the impact that it has on the environment. The ideal situation, however, will always be to use reusable objects instead of disposable ones. Here are four disposable items that are easy to swap with reusable ones that will make a huge impact on how much waste you throw out.

Plastic bags


Did you know that it takes 12 million barrels of oil to make the 100 billion plastic shopping bags that the U.S. uses each year? And then the majority of those 100 billion plastic shopping bags don’t get recycled; they end up landfills. Make sure you bring your reusable bags with you to the grocery store to reduce your use of plastic bags!


Water bottles


How many water bottles do you think you throw out in a month? If you have access to clean drinking water, there is absolutely no reason that you should be wasting so much plastic on a bottle that will just be thrown out after. 8 million tons of plastic are dumped into the ocean every year. Try using reusable water bottles instead.




Another huge plastic consumption culprit? Straws. Did you know that you can buy reusable straws? You can choose from bamboo, glass, stainless, and silicone! They even make bendable ones.


To go coffee cups


Even when made of recycled materials, a takeaway coffee cup is wreaking havoc on the environment. When you order coffee, ask for it in a mug rather than a to go cup. Every coffee shop, even your local starbucks, has mugs you can order your coffee in. If you’re in a hurry, bring your own thermos. You may even get a discount if you bring your own cup, since you’re reducing their cost, although not by a lot.