Dani Masi

Dani Masi

Tips for A Successful Plastic Free July

With July 1st fast approaching, there’s no better time to get prepping for Plastic Free July! Whether it’s your first time in the competition, or you’re a veteran plastic warrior, I’ve put together some handy tips and tricks from my Plastic Free July experiences that’ll help you get started and be successful in reducing your plastic waste.

1. Do it with a friend!

Not only does having a friend in the competition make you feel more accountable, but it helps make the challenge a little easier. Having someone to bounce ideas off of and share plastic light locations with helped being plastic free much less daunting last year.

2. Ignore the pressure to spend a lot of money.

Building up your reusable arsenal shouldn’t burn a hole in your wallet. Do what you can within your means, and don’t worry about what everyone else is doing! Chances are, you’re doing just fine.

3. Get ready to say no.

‘No thanks’ was a staple in my vocabulary last July when it came to dining out, shopping, going out with friends, and just living a plastic free life. Always be polite, but never be afraid to decline plastic.

4. Let go of the little things.

So, you said ‘no thanks’ and still got a straw, or you bought a box of veggie burgers only to discover that they’re actually wrapped in plastic. Mistakes happen! Learn from them and move on.

5. Buy in bulk.

To avoid plastic packaging, try shopping in bulk! Lucky’s Market, Sprouts, and Bulk Nation all offer sizable bulk sections with a variety of products that cover some seriously tough to find staples.

6. Bring a reusable bottle with you.

This might seem like a simple one, but take a reusable bottle with you everywhere. Not only does it come in handy for water (hydration is important!) but in a pinch it can be handy for coffee, soft drinks, or any other type of beverage.

7. Take a bag everywhere.

Something I found difficult last year was remembering to bring my reusable bags with me to the store. What helped the most was leaving them in my car and in my backpack, that way I was always prepared.

8. Use all your resources & reach out for help if you need it!

If you’re struggling to find a plastic free alternative, or you aren’t sure how to begin the challenge, take advantage EcoChallenge’s plastic free tips, and Plastic Free July’s guide to living plastic free. Also, feel free reach out to us on Facebook and Instagram @SustainableUCF for support and motivation!