Choosing more eco friendly products is a great step in not only reducing waste volume but also keeping our resources renewable. However, when it comes to the latest fad, everyone can be easily sucked into to beautiful packing, social media and the good old "green washing".
Green Washing is the term used to describe when an item isn't as eco-friendly as it's perceived to be. Think, flushable liners, biodegradable takeout containers. Both of these don't breakdown, in fact the latter/anything put into your regular rubbish bin doesn't breakdown in landfill - it's covered.
Living an eco lifestyle is becoming the next big fad and sadly many companies are jumping on board...possibly without considering the whole supply to end-consumer chain i.e. manufacturing packaging right through to rubbish/waste systems in the destination country. Sadly certain terms do suck consumers in and we find ourselves competing on who is more eco - much like the stigma around cloth being "all or nothing".
Many of the technologies coming out are revolutionary and so it will take time to figure out which weren't as great as initially thought - and that's ok. Heck we used to say smoking was great - promoted by your doctor...we now know better. No company is perfect, but if the intention is correct and they're doing their research (which is an ongoing process) then they're on the right road.
Now it's not all bad, and heck I'm not up here on my high horse saying I'm perfect either. But what I am trying to do is not buy into the fad. Instead we choose to
- wait until our not-so-eco-friendly products come to their natural end before buying new (instead of going Marie Kondo on my cupboards and buying everything brand new again) i.e. using up my few toothbrushes whilst researching which of the many new brands I like
- gift items that are perfectly fine but maybe don't agree with our ethos i.e. huge pack of plastic razors donated so I could buy a metal safety razor
- wearing out my clothes until they are actually worn out and then replacing with recycled fibres (if new) or looking second hand first
- buy second hand especially plastic toys (something starting with L ending in EGO)
I am all for being more sustainable but piece by piece is our motto. Try to think is it something you need or want, and if it's something you really want maybe look at what you can swap/sell/pass on instead to someone else.