Go Green: Practical tips for how to do your part for the planet
From small, everyday habits to shopping sustainably, it's never been easier to join the eco-friendly movement. Here's our roundup of amazing retailer initiatives to support, as well as small day-to-day changes you can make now that will have a big impact over time.
To the list!
3 easy habits to start today
Who says you need to compromise to go green? These daily deeds may be small, but they add up to a mighty impact on our planet!
1. Love your reusable coffee mug
We all love our coffee. Clutching on that piping hot cup is often what gets us through the morning - and sometimes, the afternoon too. So just think about how many trees you'll save by swapping your daily disposable for a reusable alternative. With an abundance of colours, materials and sizes, you're bound to find your perfect cuppa at Stevens, Typo or Farmers. Don't forget to opt for one made from glass, ceramic, silicon, metal or wood, and avoid plastic where possible.
The same goes for drink bottles! Purchasing a reusable drink bottle will not only help you to stay hydrated, but it'll also reduce your plastic consumption. As an added incentive, bottled water is also more expensive per litre than petrol, so your wallet will be thanking you, too! Grab yours at Typo or check out the cute kids range at Smiggle.
2. Storm in a teacup
From an antioxidant-rich green to calming chamomile, tea can benefit the body and mind. While one teabag may seem insignificant, the cumulative impact from the world's tea drinkers of the material that goes into teabags is one of the largest, most avoidable by-products of food waste. You can reduce your carbon footprint one teabag at a time but switching to loose leaf tea. You'll find the most delicious brews available at Countdown and for those nifty infusers visit Stevens.
3. Say goodbye to plastic
While major supermarkets have now removed plastic bags from their checkouts, it's easy to stretch that bit further when you're out and about or at home with these handy tips.
- Pop a few cotton produce pouches into your grocery bags to hold loose fruits and vegetables.
- Buy in bulk, where possible, to reduce packaging materials
- Replace single-use plastic cling wrap for reusable beeswax or silicon alternatives.
- When your plastic containers need a refresh, swap them for more environmentally-friendly metal or silicon options. You can also reuse old glass bottles to give your pantry an insta-worthy rustic look.
- Recycle single-use plastic packaging including produce bags, bread bags, cereal box liners, biscuit wrappers and confectionery packaging, rice and pasta packets and frozen food bags (which can't be recycled through your green bin at home) by dropping them in the allocated bins found in supermarkets, such as Countdown.
Return and recycle
Many of your most-loved brands are already breaking ground in this space with in-store recycling initiatives. These retailers not only offer a recycling service in-store, some will even reward you for doing so!
M.A.C is encourages its customers to reduce waste with the Back to MAC recycling program. M·A·C accepts returns of its primary packaging through the Back to M·A·C Program. By returning six  M·A·C primary packaging containers to any M·A·C free standing store or counter customers can receive a free M·A·C lipstick or mascara from the Back to M·A·C gift collection* as a thanks to you for choosing to recycle. Find out more >
The Body Shop
Did you know that you can take your old bottles, tubs, tubes, jars and pots in store for the Body Shop to recycle for you. The Body Shop are continuing to look at more innovative ways to help the environment (like our Community Fair Trade plastics programme) they also embrace a circular economy approach to help eliminate some of the waste from their products. Find out more >
With an increasing number of retailers offering sustainable ranges, you'll be spoilt for choice. Check out the exciting, planet-loving products these brands have to offer.
Named the 2019 Responsible Retailer Initiative of the Year at the May 2019 World Retail Congress Awards, Cotton On, in partnership with Business for Development, Base Titanium and the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, launched Kenya Cotton. Cotton On funded the training and setup of local Kenyan farms, from which they source their cotton, to help to transition to more sustainable farming practices. The program has not only enabled those farmers to increase the yield of their farms, thereby double their income but will also enable Cotton On to achieve their goal of sourcing a 100% of the cotton used in their range from sustainable sources by 2021. Find out more >
Image source: @cottonon
The Body Shop
Founder Anita Roddick believed that business could be a force for good. With an ambition to become the world’s most ethical and sustainable business, The Body Shop works fairly with farmers and suppliers through their Community Trade programme, produces their plastic packaging mostly from recycled sources, are 100% vegetarian and stand firmly against animal testing. Find out more >
Image source: @thebodyshopaust