Lifestyle

5 Everyday Refillable Swaps to Help Reduce Waste

By Kelly Green
01.02.19

Reducing our household waste isn’t always easy, but even small changes around the home can make a big difference.  Here are some simple refillable swaps for everyday household items to help cut down on waste at home.

 

Once you start trying to reduce your household plastic waste, it suddenly appears everywhere you look - from your food packaging to your cleaning products; from your bathroom to your makeup bag.

It can easily feel unavoidable.  While recyclable packaging is a step in the right direction, avoiding waste altogether by using refillable products is even better.

Thankfully some brands out there are making it easier to reduce your waste by providing refillable solutions - whether it be refillable mascara or cleaning products straight to your door.

Here are some simple swaps to get you started:

CLEANING PRODUCTS

Your household cleaning products likely come in plastic containers, and while there are eco-friendly options out there that use recyclable packaging, you can reduce waste even further by refilling everyday items.

  • Splosh
    Splosh delivers refillable cleaning products straight to your door. Choose from laundry detergents, handwash, washing up liquid, kitchen cleaner, glass cleaner, floor cleaner - the list goes on.  Start with full bottles, then when your bottles run out, order refills online or via the Splosh app and concentrated refill pouches will arrive through your letterbox. Refill your original bottles using the concentrate and water, return the pouches for free in the refill box, et voila! Plastic waste reduced by around 97.5%. 
     
  • Ecover
    Ecover’s washing up liquid, laundry liquid and all-purpose cleaner bottles can be used more than 50 times and can be refilled at Refill Stations across the UK. Use its online store locator to find a refill station near you.

(MORE: DISCOVER OUR FAVOURITE ECO-FRIENDLY CLEANING PRODUCTS)

SHAMPOO, CONDITIONER & BODYWASH 

Soaps and shampoo bars are a great solution to eliminating plastic waste in the bath or shower. But if you’ve given shampoo bars a try and are still hunting for the one that works for you, refillable shampoo, conditioner and bodywash could be the answer.

Faith in Nature

• Established in 1974, Faith in Nature believes in harnessing the power of nature without harming it in the process. Its vegan shampoo, conditioner and bodywash products are made using naturally derived, cruelty-free ingredients, with 100% natural fragrance, and are free from parabens and SLS.   While they don’t offer refills directly, many independent stores have set up Faith In Nature refill stations over the last few years  (see a list of refill stations here).

• You can also refill at home by buying one of its 5 litre bottles and refilling yourself and once that's empty, return it for money off your next purchase.

(MORE: PLASTIC-FREE AND ECO-FRIENDLY BEAUTY SWAPS).

MAKE-UP

If you take a look inside your makeup bag today, you might find it rife with plastic mascaras, foundation bottles, eyeshadow pallets and powder cases, which once disposed of will likely end up in landfill. Wouldn’t it be great if you could simply refill them?

  • Kjaer Weis
    Each item in the Kjaer Weis range has a refillable component, helping to reduce waste. Made with natural and organic materials, the stunning metal compacts are made to last and can easily be refilled with your favorite KW product when you run out. 
  • Zao
    Zao’s makeup range is not only certified 100% natural, organic and cruelty-free, it also comes in refillable bamboo casing. When you run out, simply order your refill online.  
     
  • La Bouche Rouge Paris
    An estimated 1 billion lipsticks are thrown away in the world every year. La Bouche Rouge Paris has set out to reduce this number with its range of luxury refillable lipsticks.
    Read our interview with La Bouche Rouge founder Nicolas Gerlier.

(MORE:  ETHICAL COSMETICS PACKAGING - HOW TO FIND IT)

FLOSS

It’s important to floss every day, we know, but commercial dental floss with its synthetic polymers and rigid plastic casing can be terrible for the planet.  Luckily going plastic free doesn’t have to mean changing your daily dental care routine though.

Georganics
Georganics natural dental floss is made from sustainable sources like bamboo fibre or ahimsa silk, coated with natural waxes and flavoured with essential oils. It comes in a glass dispenser that can be used over and over again, simply order your refills online.

DEODORANT

After searching high and low for a natural deodorant that works, you might be wary of making the switch to a refillable deodorant. There are some great natural deodorant brands using recyclable and reusable paper and glass packaging (such as The Natural Deodorant Co and Meow Meow Tweet), but you can now go one step further with a refillable deodorant.

  • Myro
    US-based Myro delivers refillable cases and recyclable deodorant pods to your door. Choose your case and your scent, and you’ll get a refresh every three months. Made of barley powder to keep you dry and essential oils that release scent over time, they contain no aluminum, parabens, phthalates or talc.
     
  • Salt of the Earth
    Salt of the Earth’s 100% natural, unscented, unisex 100ml spray deodorant can be refilled at home with this supersize 1l refill. 

Inspired? See our 8 zero waste swaps for familes.

For more zero-waste inspiration, see Melissa Hemsley's 10 simple single-use plastic swaps and our plastic-free beauty swaps.

5 Everyday Refillable Swaps to Help Reduce Waste