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Have you ever seen those “What’s in my bag?” videos or blog posts? They always make you want to make a few impulse buys because you either think something looks really cool or you realized it would really come in handy if you had it in your bag too. Well, this is like that but better. We don’t just want to help you simplify your life, but we want your help in saving the environment! We have a serious problem with plastic. Almost everything we use these days is made of plastic and it’s terrible for the oceans, marine life, and the planet overall. We can all do our part in trying to produce less waste and cause less Pollution. That’s why we suggest these 15 products from Amazon for the ultimate zero-waste backpack or purse!
1. Bamboo Travel Utensils
Source: Bamboo Travel Utensils
Having Bamboo Travel Utensils on hand will help you avoid using plastic utensils when you want to eat out. It really comes in handy! These reusable bamboo utensils are made from sustainably harvested bamboo. They’re lightweight, strong, long-lasting, and don’t impart or absorb flavors. The carry case is even made from recycled plastic bottles. The set includes a fork, knife, spoon, chopsticks, and the case with a carabiner. It’s available in seven colors: Avocado, Agave, Cayenne Cover, Hijiki, Indigo, Mulberry, and Pumpkin. The price is $11.99.
Rhonda says, “The utensils are sturdy and have a satin-like feel to the way they’ve been finished – very pleasing to hold. The chopsticks are of excellent quality as well – not too long or short – and they have a twist to the ends that give them a very contemporary look. The knife is effective enough for a lunch kit – like a cross between a butter knife and a spatula with a decently pointed tip. I’ll probably be able to manage hacking through a grapefruit or some other semisoft foods with it, but it’s definitely not a bread knife. At least I won’t have to worry about puncturing my lunch bag. I was so pleased with the quality that I ordered the kid’s kit for my soon-to-be kindergartener.”
2. Organic Handkerchiefs
Source: Organic Handkerchiefs
If you have a cold, you might carry around a small plastic set of tissues or you might reach for a tissue paper that you’ll have to throw away. But if you have a reusable handkerchief you don’t have to do that. You’ll also have something to reach for if you need to cry for some reason! These Organic Handkerchiefs are natural cream-colored and they’re in a set of three. The price is $13.99.
An Amazon customer says, “Lovely soft handkerchiefs have worked great. I love that they are organic and made in USA! These are a little thicker than regular cotton or bamboo, so I like the slightly smaller size, which allows them to fold up about the same overall size in a pocket or bag. Very discreet until you need them.”
Being prepared with your own lunch helps you not only save money, but means you get to avoid plastic containers. This ECOlunchbox is made with a durable design that uses 100 percent food-grade stainless steel! It comes with three different sized sections: a 12 ounce capacity (1.5 cups), a 14 ounce capacity (1.75 cups), and a 5 ounce capacity (.75 cup). The price is $34.95.
An Amazon customer says, “Such a great lunch box! Purchased one for myself from the container store a week or two ago and fell in love with it. Partner wanted one too so I bought them this one for their birthday.”
4. Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel Bottle
Having your own refillable water bottle saves money and avoids plastic. With a reusable bottle, you’ll never again have those days when you’re parched and feel that you have no choice but to buy a plastic water bottle. This Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel Bottle is made with double-walled construction and has great insulating properties. It’s free of BPA, phthalates, lead, and other toxins. It’s available in four colors: Brushed Stainless, Neptune Blue, Roasted Pepper, and Vineyard Green. The prices varies by color between $26.93 and $29.95.
An Amazon customer says, “My husband & I each have one of these bottles. You put ice and a beverage in it, and it’s still cold and icy the next day! I haven’t used it for hot beverages. I misplaced my original klean kanteen, and HAD to have another one.”
5. Reusable Grocery Bags
Source: Reusable Grocery Bags
You never know when you might run into a stand selling something you’re interested in buying. Or you might have to run to a store and buy some quick groceries on your way home. With foldable Reusable Grocery Bags in your backpack or purse, you’re always prepared! These have their own integrated square pouch, so you never lose it! They’re made of a lightweight fabric that is sturdy and resistant to rips. They’re available in many different colors and patterns. Each set has 5 bags! They cost $13.99.
An Amazon Customer says, “I hate going shopping and ending up with lots of plastic bags at home. I had some canvas bags that I would use and they were pretty roomy, but they were starting to rip at the handles and get filthy. I guess I could have washed them but it seemed such a hassle. I saw these bags online and bought them to try them out. I am impressed! They are easy to fold and carry (I hook them on a carabiner to store in my car so they’re always on hand), made of durable materials, and easy to clean! I like how they pack down into soft little squares I can easily tuck it into a pocket or a clutch purse so if I happen to have a spur of the moment shopping, I can pull out a bag to use.”
6. Reusable Silicone Collapsible Straws
Straws are one of the many small plastic items that people are often urged to replace because of the amount of damage they cause marine animals and the amount that ends up in the ocean. These Reusable Silicone Collapsible Straws are made from food grade silicone and are 100 percent BPA free. These cute straws come in their little case so they’re easy to throw in your bag or clip to your keychain so they don’t take up much space! They’re available in different colors. The price for a set of two is $8.99.
Eric says, “My daughter and her friend split this order of two straws. They liked the little pod the straws come in and they like the tiny cleaning tool that fits in the pod. So easy to carry anywhere!”
7. Ball Pint Mason Jar
Source: Ball Pint Mason Jar
A Ball Pint Mason Jar is typically used for panning, preserving, and crafting. But these BPA-free jars are also great for so many other uses! With a mason jar in your bag, you can not only carry liquids or snacks from home, but you can get some juice at a juice bar or a smoothie, a coffee, etc. without having to get a plastic cup or bottle! This set of 3 clear glass jars with lids and bands costs $10.42.
Jolanny says, “Who doesn’t love a good set of mason jars! So many good uses to them!”
8. Canvas Makeup Bags/Travel Toiletry Pouch Kit
If you don’t have a makeup bag or toiletry pouch/kit, you might be tempted to use a ziploc bag to quickly store things in your bag. But avoid the plastic and buy a pouch/kit that you can always keep in your bag like this Canvas Makeup Bags/Travel Toiletry Pouch Kit. It’s sturdy, eco-friendly, and made of canvas. It costs $12.95.
Mary says, “I will use these bags as cosmetic bags for travel. More countries are banning plastic bags from being brought thru Customs.”
9. Vegan Zero Waste Lip Balm
Source: Vegan Zero Waste Lip Balm
Having lip balm in your backpack or purse is a life saver! But most come in little plastic tubes and aren’t exactly eco-friendly unless they’re in a recyclable container. This Vegan Zero Waste Lip Balm is made with natural ingredients, totally vegan, and completely zero waste because it comes in a small tin that can be reused! It costs $12.00.
10. Reusable Napkins
Source: Reusable Napkins
These flannel napkins may have cute little designs on them, but these aren’t just for kids. Think of all the napkins you can avoid using if you have Reusable Napkins in your bag like these flannel ones! As Gina’s Soft Cloth Shop says: “This is a great way to help eliminate trash, and an easy way to help the environment. The Little Wipes are perfect for little hands, but are thirsty enough to dry big hands, too.” This set of five costs $12.95.
An Amazon customer says, “Loved everything about these reusable napkins! They’re cute and effective. Saves the trees and depending how messy you are you can use one for your meals in a day. Love!”
11. Eco-Friendly Body Sampler
Source: Eco-Friendly Body Sampler
This Eco-Friendly Body Sampler will be your new favorite life hack! It has two body wash bars, deodorant, body butter block, and body polish. The sampler set is cruelty-free, eco-friendly, TSA friendly, and compostable. This means you can carry your favorites around and use them on the go as lotion or soap, and deodorant is always good to have on hand for sweaty days. Ethique also offers zero-waste shampoo and conditioner bars. This sampler costs $16.50.
Julie says, “I’ve always enjoy trying new personal hygiene products and as I get older I’m trying to be more conscious about buying products that are environmentally friendly and better for my hair and skin. Recently I stumbled across the Ethique line of products and decided to try the shampoo and conditioner sampler. This stuff is a game changer for me.”
12. Biodegradable Wood Comb
Source: Biodegradable Wood Comb
If you have a beard or long hair, you know most combs are made of plastic. But these Biodegradable Wood Combs are easy to throw in your bag. They’re completely biodegradable, splinter free, and water resistant. They’re also static free and easy to use for hair, mustaches, and beards. Even the packaging is zero-waste, made with recycled materials. A box of two combs costs $7.99.
Jen says, “We have been using these for about a week now without any complaint. The easy open packaging is fantastic! Have you ever tried to open a comb package without needing a hack saw? They are wider than I had anticipated which is a plus. We grabbed these, because we keep losing our toddlers combs and were frustrated that they didn’t work through their “toddler-ness” of hair even with gobs and gobs of detangler. Why not use a brush? toddler. Enough said. Bonus that the toddlers have learned that they make an excellent xylophone toy. Toddler uses aside, I did also test these out of my less than stellar, wavy, unruly hair. It did work through my thick locks without much effort and without the static! Peach Wood FTW.!”
13. Travel Coffee Flask
Source: Travel Coffee Flask
For those coffee lovers who bring coffee from home every morning, but then also buy a minimum of one coffee while out and about, a thermos is a must! And when the weather gets cold, a thermos is a great sustainable hack to have on hand for everyone. This Travel Coffee Flask has double wall vacuum insulated stainless steel and keeps drinks cold for up to 24 hours and hot for up to 6 hours. It’s available in many colors and the price varies by color from $21.56 to $89.95.
An Amazon Customer says, I usually make coffee before I go to work and it is still piping hot after my 30min commute and stays hot for hours even with the lid open on my desk. I am often still drinking it by lunchtime if it has been a busy shift. I will clarify and say that I am a piping hot or iced cold coffee drinker. I do not do lukewarm. Running hot water in the mug to warm it up before adding your coffee or tea helps keep it warmer longer as well, but is not required.”
14. Reusable Storage/Snack Bags
Source: Reusable Storage/Snack Bags
Just having your own snacks and lunch is a way to avoid plastic. But it’s even better when you can carry them in plastic-free reusable bags that zip open and close like these eco-friendly Reusable Storage/Snack Bags. Also, if you grew up using Ziploc bags, then you know these bags aren’t just for food and they come in handy for all sorts of things you want to throw in your bag but need to keep separated from the other things in your bag. The price for a set of 5 is $9.99.
An Amazon customer says, “I’ve been complaining a lot about the amount of plastics bags used in my house, so i decided to buy 8 of theses bags, and I’m not going back to the plastic ones. It’s easy to clean, to wash, it doesn’t leak, and it saves a lot of space in my fridge. I completely grateful for reusable bags, and i’ll def buy more soon!”
15. Menstrual Cup
Source: Menstrual Cup
An estimated 45 million menstruation-related products (pads, tampons, etc.) are thrown in the garbage every year. A Menstrual Cup is an environmentally friendly solution! This cup by Athena has an innovative FORM-FIT Rim and softer silicone that makes inserting and removing easy. It’s leak free and you can go 12 hours between changes. It’s also Phlalate Free, Latex Free, Dioxin Free, BPA Free. The price is $14.95.
Glory says, “I was worried that the cup wouldn’t work for me, but it’s working great so far and NO LEAKS! I previously bought a generic menstrual cup on the Wish App. It leaked every time I used it so I tossed it out after a few months of trying. I knew I wanted to use a cup, but I didn’t want to break the bank either. Athena Cup is affordable and has decent reviews, so I bought one! I decided to not buy any tampons this month, so that I have no choice but to make this work for me lol! So far, so good!”
If you’re on a zero-waste journey or at least trying to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle, check out 15 Eco-Friendly Products You Should Be Using!
Easy Ways to Help the Planet:
- Eat Less Meat: Download Food Monster, the largest plant-based Recipe app on the App Store to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals and get healthy. You can also buy a hard or soft copy of our favorite vegan cookbooks.
- Reduce Your Fast Fashion Footprint: Take initiative by standing up against fast fashion Pollution and supporting sustainable and circular brands like Tiny Rescue that are raising awareness around important issues through recycled zero-waste clothing designed to be returned and remade over and over again.
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- Do What You Can: Reduce waste, plant trees, eat local, travel responsibly, reuse stuff, say no to single-use plastics, recycle, vote smart, switch to cold water laundry, divest from fossil fuels, save water, shop wisely, Donate if you can, grow your own food, volunteer, conserve energy, compost, and don’t forget about the microplastics and microbeads lurking in common household and personal care products!