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Don't know what to do with all your old sh*t once you've made the shift? We’ve compiled some helpful tips to make your detox circular and keep plastic out of the landfill.

Kat Hoelck

October 8, 2020

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Kat Hoelck
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o you’ve decided to break up with plastic. Congratulations on taking your first steps! Now, what to do with all your old sh*t once you've made the shift? We’ve compiled some helpful tips to make your detox circular and keep plastic out of the landfill.


RAZORS

2 Billion razors a year are sent to landfill. Most razors you buy at the drug store are made from mixed materials that can't be separated to be recycled. Next time you shave, take a look and see how many different types of plastic you see. City facilities can’t recycle it if it has mixed materials.

Terracycle, an awesome company focused on solving for our societies waste streams, has partnered with Gillette to collect everything from old blades and handles to the rigid plastic packaging it comes in to sterilize, shred, and repurpose into new goods. This is the best recycling option currently available. Good news, by using a safety razor you’ll never have to worry about that again. All you change out is the stainless steel blade. Collect your dull blades in a container in your bathroom until you’re ready to send them in to be upcycled. Help the post office and the planet at the same time and send them (packaged safely in a rigid or doubled envelope) to Albatross Designs PO Box 2254 Berkeley, CA 94702.


SOAP/SHAMPOO/ETC Bottles  

Imagine the size of a football field. Now, imagine 1,164 of them, FULL of shampoo bottles. That enormous volume is how many shampoo bottles the United States alone sends to the heap every year.

Good news is that most shampoo, conditioner, lotion bottles are pretty easy to recycle in city facilities.  Check out this tool to see which materials your zip code accepts. Rinse extra product out of the bottle and voila! Toss it in the recycling bin. You can leave caps on since most caps are readily recyclable.

It's wild considering how prevalent they are but, as it stands, pump and sprayer tops have to be discarded. Why? For things to be recycled, the parts have to  be separated by material type to turn back into a raw material. Pump and Spray tops have a mix of plastics and metal, making it cost prohibitive to have people physically break down separate so it can be upcycled into a new material.  There are fully recyclable tops in development, but as a consumer, there are not alternatives widely on the market.  We love a good spray top. Take it off your old bottle, and you’ll see that they fit universally on a lot of glass bottles. They’re perfect for making your own DIY cleaners.

PLASTIC BAGS and WRAPS

The average ‘working life’ of a plastic bag is 15 minutes before it is then sent to live forever in the trash heaps. Globally, we consume 1 million bags per minute.

Beyond bags, plastic film and wrap is used on basically everything.  It’s not just the roll of cling wrap that you might find in your kitchen, think: the casing that holds together a big pack of toilet paper, the bag newspapers come in, plastic shipping envelopes and air packs, cereal and bread bags, bubble wrap, dry cleaning bags and more. None of this kind of plastic is recyclable.

It seems like if it’s plastic, we should be able to recycle it, but this type of plastic jams up the sorting machines at the processing facility. If you try to send them curbside they’ll get sorted out and sent to the landfill.  But before that gets ya down, this is what we do.

Keep a little stash of them collecting under your sink and then next time you go to the grocery store, drop them off in the bins in the entrance. It’s pretty awesome how many stores are set up to collect them back for proper recycling. Click here to find a location near you.  

One thing we love about the switch to beeswax wraps and reusable bags is that you feel lighter knowing you’re not making as much trash.  EcoAnxiety is real and tiny solutions help us manage the stress.


TerraCyle Zero Waste Kit

We love TerraCycle for creating a catch-all solution for hard-to-recyclables. They partner with brands to collect their waste for recycle while also offering consumers the opportunity to purchase recycling kits. You order a box, fill it to the brim with your hard-to-recyclables, and mail it back with their prepaid shipping label. Terracycle’s whole business is built around coming up with recycling solutions for some of the planet's biggest waste streams. As it stands, It’s a costly solution, so we recommend filling a box with your friends and family to get the most impact with your buck.


A Circular Future

Circular economy, aimed at continual use of resources and eliminating waste, iss the way of the future. We are super excited to see companies developing regenerative products and closed-loop solutions.

As consumers we have the ability to create culture.  At Future Prosperity we are passionate about design ideas that solve some of the biggest issues that affect people and people.  

We know that individuals create culture and that we as individuals can have an impact on shifting markets. And we also know that change must come from the top down in order to make the moves necessary to protect the ecosystem. Corporations, Government, and consumers need to work together to close the loop. We are excited you are on this journey with us.


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