Saturday, 24 January 2009

Skin So Soft

The biggest waste in my bathroom (I'll start on some other rooms in the house this year - honest!!) are the disposable razors. I've been meaning to pluck up the courage to get around to sorting this since I read Fake Plastic Fish 's post here....

Only I'm a coward.

My irrational fear of cutting my body to bits like a teenager with emotional issues to going to be put to the test as I now own a "Happiness double blade safety razor". I've no idea how old it is all I can tell you is that was made in the "People's Republic Of China" (which Wikipedia informs me only came about on 1 October 1949) and I have seen the blades for sale all over Ebay.

Wish me luck, if ladies in 1915 where able to cope with razors like this and people still today drive cars older than 1949 we should soon be walking out with nice smooth... un cut.... legs.

(Except that it's cold outside)

Monday, 29 December 2008

LUSH - My prayers have been answered.

I sent an email to Lush ( ) asking if they can send their lovely sounding goods in plastic free packaging....

Thankyou for your e-mail, we can pack your order naked with popcorn or we can bag each item and label this for you.

When you order just let us know.

Many Thanks


Lush Mail Order.

Looks like bath time just got more interesting!! You can buy solid bars of shampoo and soap and can be reassured that not only is the company supplying these against animal testing, produce vegan products in a "green" factory" but you're doing your bit for the environment by avoiding that plastic packaging!

Sunday, 28 December 2008

It's starting to have an effect.

As if breaking* my back again and suffering many many flare ups of the "chronic illness" wasn't a bad enough thing to have to contend with, the supply of luxuries around my house are starting to rapidly diminish.

Or in short

- I have no bubble bath and very little shower gel
- I miss a good steak (though not at the same time as taking a bubble bath)

My body is being washed with some soap I found in the back of a cupboard and while you don't get the interesting read when you're in the bath (what? You don't read the bottles when you're in the bath and wonder what all of those chemicals actually do?) my skin still seems as soft as ever. I do find my skin feeling "tighter" though straight after a wash - and not in a good way.

I am now on the look out for D I Y alternatives - the internet is amazing!

One thing I have struggled with though is shopping - not just because it is physically very difficult to go shopping right now but because while I am managing to reduce my plastic intake by just refusing to buy certain items (oh how I do miss berries - why must they pack fruit in so much plastic?) or by shopping around and only getting things if the packaging is 100% recyclable some things it seems are impossible to get right now without being liberally coated in plastic... meat for one thing.

I can cope with having to buy fresh vegetables and freezing it myself if I want to keep my freezer stocked up on frozen goods but I don't think I am yet able to home a young lamb in the garden (not until I have my vegetable plot built anyway. Even the local butchers (who are very expensive) look at me as if I am insane when I ask if they'll wrap the meat in paper rather than plastic. I guess I'll have to keep looking for this one.

But I can say having to look at everything that goes in your shopping trolley is an amazing way of keeping the cost of shopping low!! It horrifies me to think about how much we used to spend on stuff that
a) we didn't really need
b) and probably wouldn't have noticed if we had forgotten to pick up
c) was mostly priced on how shiny the packaging was.

More when I'm upwardly mobile!!

*okay perhaps not that melodramatic - my
sacroiliac jointkeeps "popping" out of place and requires my wonderful physio to force it back into place [which is more painful than when I really did break it!!]. Keep your fingers crossed for February when I see a specialist to hopefully sort it!!

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Just to let you know that I'm not dead - I haven't drowned in plastic bottles or been punished for mixing my cardboard with my egg shells.

Unfortunately the trouble with a chronic illness is that sometimes it gets in the way of life.

I have just been tested for diabetes (three plastic tubes of blood! The nurse told me they are incinerated but then I don't think they'd have liked it if I'd have taken them to the recycling centre!) I have also been put on a different kind of painkiller (more plastic I fear!) will be starting physiotherapy next week (Yay! Non plastic!) have three hospital appointments lined up for December (Growl) and have my last pain management course season on the 27th of this month.

So I have been rather busy really.

I have also started to get low on my deodorant - this is not good!!

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Kitchen - Stock Check

If you thought the bathroom was full of plastic you'll be amazed at how much plastic you can force into one (rather disorganised) cupboard under the kitchen sink.

The List...

Things I rather like
  • Ecover ecological washing up liquid x 3 litres
  • Sainsburys Biological Gel Capsules x 900 ml (I know these aren't very good for my task but when my pain levels are high I find these a life saver - no fiddling around with arms that wont work trying to fill the washing machine drawer up with powder)
  • Flash Power Mop Cleaning Liquid x 2 litre (another huge life saver on the cripple front, it's so light and easy to use)
  • Flash Power Mop cleaning pads (see the cripple excuse above)
Things I could live without
  • Bleach x 2 litres
  • CIF oven cleaner x 500 ml
  • W5 bathroom cleaner x 1 litre
  • Grout Cleaner x 500 ml (and adding it here isn't just an excuse to avoid cleaning the bathroom tiles)
  • Pledge Soap Cleaner For Wood x 1 litre
  • Mr Muscle Cleaner x 750 ml
  • Ecover Floor Soap x 1 litre
Things I don't use but haven't recycled yet
  • Ant stop x 600 ml (if the ants are brave enough to walk through my kitchen they deserve the cake!)
  • Sink Unblocker x 1 litre (it smells so nasty!)
This isn't my whole kitchen - this is just one cupboard! If you look around the rest of the room you will see lots more plastic - the fridge must be full of it. Most of this seems to be cleaning material - so it's a case of getting out the lemon and vinegar and cleaning like your great - grandma did! At least now my house wont smell of chemicals.

My two keeps for this room are the Ecover ecological washing up liquid and Sainsburys Biological Gel Capsules. When I've got everything else on track I will start coming up with alternatives for these. But until then I will keep them and hope that the energy I save in using them will mean I will have that extra bit of strength to work harder on the rest.

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Easy Guide To Plastic Bottles

Many thanks to the BBC! They provide a wonderful list on this web page...

I'm finding their website very grown up but it is absolutely packed full of information!

Name: Polyethylene terephthalate
Known as: PET
Used in: Fizzy drink bottles and oven-ready meal trays.

Name: High-density polyethylene
Known as: HDPE
Used in: Bottles for milk and washing-up liquids

Name: Polyvinyl chloride
Known as: PVC
Used in: Food trays, cling film, bottles for squash, mineral water and shampoo

Name: Low density polyethylene
Known as: LDPE
Used in: Carrier bags and bin liners.

Name: Polypropylene
Known as: PP
Used in: Margarine tubs, microwaveable meal trays.

Name: Polystyrene
Known as: PS
Used in: Yoghurt pots, foam meat or fish trays, hamburger boxes and egg cartons, vending cups, plastic cutlery

This last category is used for all other plastics, such as melamine – often used in plastic cups and plates

Bathroom - The Stock Check

The bathroom seems to have plastic hidden in every corner. Is it really necessary to have so much plastic packaging on everything?

The List....

Things I rather like
  • Plastic tooth brushes x 3 (one electric, two manual)
  • Toothpaste x 3
  • Deodorant x 1
  • Tube of gel for my TENS machine pads
  • First aid box full of plastic wrapped things of joy
  • Bag of cotton buds (can't think of a non plastic alternative for these!)
  • Plastic lid on my tube of pain killing muscle rub
  • Shampoo x 3 bottles. I'm not sure I have much confidence on a "natural" make your own method working on my hair.
Things I could live without
  • Sanitary liners x 1 box
  • Plastic box containing plastic wrapped soap ducks x 1 (birthday present)
  • Plastic box containing vitamin D tablets (Vitamin D is said to improve energy levels in people with CFS - but there has to be a nicer way of getting ones D than trying to swallow huge tablets!)
  • Pack of wax strips (owwie!!)
  • Plastic Packaging containing 24 loo rolls (do you really need to wrap them in plastic?)
  • 345 cream. I'm sure there's something else out there!
  • Facial scrubs. There are loads of recipes for make your own cleaning products. I'd best get reading!
  • Body scrubs (smell nice, claim to make your skin tingle, don't help the environment with all that plastic wrapping!)
  • Bottle of body wash for the chemically sensitive (why not get rid of all chemicals and make your own?)
  • Bubble bath x 3 (makes bubbles and smells funny in the bath.... I can do that)
  • 6 plastic razors
  • Shaving gel (it has a plastic lid)
  • Mouthwash
  • Hairspray x 2 (plastic lid)
Things I don't use but haven't recycled yet
  • Plastic tube containing denture cleaning tablets (from when I wore braces!)
  • Hair gel
  • Hair removing lotion (used it, hated it, but didn't want to throw it away)
  • Nail polish remover (work ensures my nails are never suitable to be polished)
  • Baby lotion (used it when I had sensitive skin, it didn't help. Having a baby seems an expensive way to find a reason to use it)
  • Talc powder (what's wrong with a towel?)

Well there you go, welcome to my bathroom! Luckily I'm not about to run out of anything in there so all I have to worry about right now is how to recycle the plastic bottles as I empty them. If I had to choose two items to keep I would choose toothpaste and my toothbrush. I am very picky about what goes in my mouth and a good minty toothpaste just seems reassuring.

Everything else I am now looking for plastic free replacements, whether that be by making them myself or just finding another way around the matter - why use all those scrubs when soap will do the job? Does soap still come in paper packaging?

Does anything still come in paper packaging?