Get On Board: 7 Easy Ways You Can Start Reducing Plastic Waste

“The greatest threat to our planet
is the belief that someone else will save it.” 
– Robert Swan

One of the most exciting trends to hit mainstream media recently is the trend of eco-awareness and sustainability. Influencers such as swimwear designers, cosmetics and sunscreen companies, clothing and handbag designers, documentary makers, and popular bloggers and Instagram models are pushing awareness and education when it comes to polluting the planet and our oceans.

Every single day, most of us engage in one of the most destructive things we can do to our planet: the unnecessary plastic waste. Unfortunately lots of these habits have been engrained in many of us since childhood, but the great thing about the fact that sustainability becoming a trend is that there are tons of easy, super affordable and stylish ways to reduce your impact on the environment and keep plastic out of our oceans.

1. STOP buying bottled water. Come’on people! This is the oldest trick in the book. Except one thing has changed: you can now get really nice trendy and eye-catching water bottles that don’t only help when it comes to reducing plastic waste, but they also inspire you to drink more water! Win-win! On the same note, you might want to grab a few cute thermos for your coffee on-the-go too…cause why not?

2. Bring your own shopping bag. More and more grocery store chains and even cities altogether are joining in on the trend of reducing plastic waste and are banning single-use plastic bags. You might as well get ahead of the game and invest in a cute shopping bag…before you’re stuck having to get one of those boring ones at checkout. Check out our embroidery and Mexican oilcloth reusable shopping bags and totes!

3. Be a conscious shopper. Bringing your own shopping bag is definitely a start. However there are so many choices you can make when it comes to your time at the grocery store that can have a huge impact on the planet. For example, stop using the plastic bags for product, and bring your own separate bag for produce instead, shop packaged materials that use cardboard or paper instead of plastic, and bring your own containers for any foods purchased at the deli. By the way, don’t forget your reusable bag when you head to the mall too!


4. Buy foods in bulk. Are you sensing a pattern here? What many of us don’t realize is that more than 50% of the minimization of plastic waste in our daily lives starts with the choices we make surrounding food and shopping. Packaging containers account for nearly half of the waste found in landfills. Ask Siri or Alexa where the nearest bulk food store is, get out your containers, and go to town! Plus, this tends to end up being a cheaper option too; especially when you’re feeding lots of mouths.

5. Say goodbye to plastic cutlery, and say no to straws. If you were spared the devastation of watching those videos with the turtles and the straws (we’ll just leave it at that), then you’re one of the lucky few. Lots of social media campaigns and local businesses are taking initiative and eliminating the use of plastic straws and cutlery. Plus, the growing availability of biodegradable options of these items is making it much easier for businesses to participate in the sustainability movement. However, you know what’s even better? Having your own! There are lots of super cute, affordable cutlery and straw sets for sale that come with trendy travelling cases like the one you see below.

6. Dinner parties do not have to hurt the planet. Using plastic cups and plates to reduce the amount of dishes that need to be washed at the end of the night? Totally avoidable right? If everyone pitches in to help with clean up during prep and after the meal, then hosts won’t be inclined to use plastic disposables. Also, if you pop by the liquor store to grab a bottle of wine or three before the party, take your own wine bag and start the trend of reducing plastic waste among your friends!

7. Quit using plastic on your face and hands. It has recently come to light that those yummy smelling exfoliating microbeads in soap, facewash, toothpaste and other products are actually virtually impossible to filter out. Meaning they end up in the ocean because water filtering facilities aren’t able to stop them. Then the little fishies start trying to eat them and…well you get the picture. You can make really nice homemade exfoliators using sugar, coffee or oatmeal! Now if that isn’t adding the fun into reducing plastic waste then we don’t know what is.

Sure, it’s pretty darn difficult to cut plastics out of our lives entirely. But if we start making little changes in the choices that we make today, it might just start to get a little easier to get used to reducing plastic waste as we go along. All of us here at Erica Maree believe in the importance of making these small choices to help the planet, which is why we are gifting a FREE straw holder with all purchases above $25.00.

Here at the Erica Maree studio, which doubles as a bohemian fashion and accessory shop in beautiful Puerto Vallarta, we also believe in the value of supporting artisans whose handicrafts have been passed down for generations. Each one of our pieces is created by hand with heart and soul, and provides fair labor wages for artisans in order to keep the magic of traditional Mexican hand embroidery alive.

As always, thanks for shopping handmade!