By Jodie Boyd 


So far, we’ve had pretty unpredictable summer weather. One day it’s stormy and the next it can be blazing hot sunshine. The last week of July marked the second hottest day on record for the UK (Cambridge hit 38.1C on 25th July) resulting in a heatwave lasting several days before the thunderstorms arrived.

I’m pretty confident the increase in unpredictable extremes has a lot to do with climate change.

Ah yes, climate change – that thing that we hear a lot about in the news. Amongst the range of contributors to the climate change problem is single-use plastic. Plastic production is on the rise globally and contributes to the rise in greenhouse gas emissions throughout its entire lifecycle, from production to the disposal of it.

Here are three simple products that can help address the plastic pollution problem this summer by switching to plastic-free alternatives.

1. SUNSCREEN

How ironic that the production of plastic sunscreen bottles is contributing to the rise in temperatures and therefore our need to make and buy more sunscreen! Which is why we should all be using plastic-free sunscreen.

Shade is an award-winning sunscreen that contains only four ingredients, all of which are natural and biodegradable. It’s packaged in a reusable aluminium tin and comes in a pocket-sized travel tin and a larger tin.

For more information on the benefits of using natural sunscreen over chemical-based alternatives, read our post 6 Reasons Why You Should Be Using Natural Sunscreen.

Interesting fact: Research suggests that the amount of sunscreen washed into coral reefs weighs more than The Eiffel Tower!



Shade Sunscreen is plastic-free and all-natural

Plastic-packaged sunscreen can contain harmful chemicals

2. REUSABLE WATER BOTTLE

Everybody knows that we all need water to survive and in summer, in particular, we need more water than usual to stay hydrated. This is because a lot more water and electrolytes (the salts and minerals your body takes in from food and fluids you consume) get depleted through sweating.

But don’t reach for the plastic water bottle from the supermarket shelf just yet. You may think plastic water bottles are more convenient and contain higher quality water than what is in our taps but it’s all a gimmick and an expensive one at that, financially and, more importantly, to our environment.

One million plastic bottles are sold per minute globally, 91% of which are not recycled. That’s a lot of plastic but the good news is that it’s so easy to switch to a more eco-friendly version.

Using a reusable stainless steel bottle is the most sustainable way to drink on the go. Containing the highest grade steel and virtually indestructible, with our bottles, you can rest reassured that your water will stay clean and safe and your bottle will last for as long as you look after it. Our favourite aspect of these bottles is the carry loop that allows hands-free travel and partying.

The average person needs to drink the equivalent of four 500ml water bottles per day, so switch to a reusable bottle and you’ll be preventing almost 1,500 plastic bottles from being disposed of.

The cost to buy a 500ml plastic bottle of water varies widely but the average for a 1-litre bottle is 65 pence. Compare that to the average cost of tap water (10 pence per litre) and each person would save around £400 per year by making the switch. And that excludes the cost to produce and transport the water to the shops.

To find our more about the impact of plastic bottles on our environment, read the excellent Top 10 Facts About Plastic Bottles by Raw Bottles.

Interesting fact: The expiry date on plastic water bottles refers to the date when chemicals from the bottle start leaking into the contents. Some scientists claim the same thing happens when a plastic bottle is left out in the heat for a long time.



Stainless steel bottles are durable and money-saving

Plastic bottles can leak chemicals into the water

3. INSECT REPELLENT

Mosquitos love hot, damp weather so the recent rise in warm temperatures and heavy rainfall make the perfect breeding environment for them. They breed in wet climates and come out looking for fresh blood when it gets hot so that they can lay more eggs. Urgh!

Now you can use plastic-free insect repellent and bite relief instead of plastic-packaged alternatives. Bite Nurse contains natural ingredients that mosquitoes hate (such as citronella) and comes in a handy reusable pocket-sized aluminium tin and recyclable cardboard sleeve.

Some people are more susceptible to getting bitten, including those with 'O' type blood. However, there are other ways to prevent getting bitten including avoiding both open waters and wearing dark, tight clothing.

Interesting fact: Drinking gin and tonic to prevent mosquito bites is just a myth. Back in the 1960s, Quinine was used to treat malaria, although it didn’t stop bites. However, modern tonic waters contain hardly any quinine so unfortunately don’t make a difference to this pesky mozzie bites.



Plastic-free and all-natural insect repellant & bite relief

Mosquitos breed in hot, wet weather

Do you have any other top plastic-free switches for summer?

Pic ‘n’ Mix Festival Kit supplies eco-friendly bespoke and pre-packed kits for festivals, events, travel, and lifestyle, offering a simple and convenient way to shop for all your plastic-free essentials. 

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