Plastics suck.

This is will be my public list of finding new sources of plastic-less life.


Consumables in modern city kitchens is always attached to some form of plastic consumption. Either the whole product is made out of plastic for no particular inherit reason or warped with plastic only to be discarded as soon as main item is consumed. This makes it frustrating to buy glossaries, carry them only several meters and create a bag full long lasting waste.

  • Do not waste your money on dish washing liquid. Regular ones are terrible for marine life and bio-degreable ones still come with plastic albeit it is downcycled. I highly suggest regular old soap bar. Find the most natural one you can get. It degrease better, doesn’t leave residue and as cheap as it gets.

  • Use a cotton cloth and steel wool for cleaning tools. Almost all sponges are made out of synthetic and gets terribly dirty after a while to the point of disposal. If you switch to soap for dish washing a good cotton cloth dosed with soap can clean almost anything. If anything persist steel wool is there to unleash fear into their resistance. I understand some people have non-stick cookware, it is good time to retire them at their end of life too since they are made out of one of the most terrible plastic.

  • Do not use regular cloths from supermarket. While it is wondrous to have a cloth which doesn’t hold stain, water, dries fast and cheap, they are made of plastic and the price of those conveniences are paid by everyone on this planet. Buy cotton cloths and use them as long as they lasts. Even better you can repurposed old cotton garments to this role.

  • Stainless steel is your friend. While choosing long lasting tools is the best consumption reduction strategy. Stainless steel is also very easy to clean with steel wool. They do get scratched from steel wool but it never bothered me or caused any problem. If anyone knows a side effect, please let me know. Almost anything can be made from stainless steel and they will most probably outlast you. Buy your utensils and cookware stainless.

  • Wood is your friend. Anything that cannot be stainless steel most probably can be wood. Spoons, cutting boards, you name it. While they do require some maintenance such as regular oiling and keeping moisture free, they are also very robust and good alternative to plastic. One might ask about trees. I think production of plastic is way more polluting and end product is way less durable. In the long run a wood tool probably can outlast any plastic counterpart if looked after.


The basics are the same with kitchen. Only difference is the medium that is being cleaned (= There is some personal preferences when it comes to chemicals one chose to clean them self but it must be remembered that cosmetics surrounding these “cleanness” ideas are invented quite recently and mostly for consumption.

  • Soap is once again your friend. A bar of good old plain soap or one with preferred fragrance can outlast any plastic jar full of bubbly goo. If you count the plastic nets that most people use them with it is an obvious choice for consumption and pollution reduction. If needed a cotton scrub pad can be a substitute. Soap is civilization.

  • Shampoo is another beast. I am not sure how people washed their hairs earlier when modern cosmetic chemistries did not offered unspeakable compounds but I was faring well with soap for a time. It appears to be Ph balance is important for scalp, I discovered a rinse of diluted vinegar solves this problem. So practically soap/vinegar combo can cover shampoo’s place. Not sure what to do with conditioning and beyond. Recently dry shampoo’s came to market as and alternative and they have the benefit of low package but does not last as long nor practical.

  • Dental hygiene… This is where it gets tricky. Lately there are bamboo toothbrushes which can eliminate once unavoidable plastic use but their effectiveness is a question to me. As a user of electric toothbrush I found them to be very effective recently and they are constant source of plastic and electronic consumption. Which I classify as a medical need and move on. Floss is exclusively made out of plastic and mouth wash comes almost always with plastic bottles. Toothpaste while not a necessity, most cannot do it without and plastic comes along with it.

  • Cleaning products are nightmare. Not only there is no way that one can get these harsh chemicals without HDPE containers also the very nature of the products are a pure harm to ecology. The part of the world I live, it is possible to get liquefied soap for general surface cleaning which is awesome. For sterilization and oxidation of fabrics bleach is still the best thing. Use as little and as purest form of it possible. One can get concentrated Sodium Hypochlorite and delude it with water to get most bleach per container but that feels a little excessive.

  • Brushes, brooms and other wet surface cleaning tools. They, all are plastic! I have no idea to circumvent this and only exit that I could have come with is to get most durable one possible.

  • Disposable razors are a mystery. How they become so wildly popular that we forgot whatever else even exist. If you sideline the hipster discovery of safety razors they are amazing tools. There is literally no plastic involved if you can get razor blades right, every razor lasts longer, creates barely any waste even if you don’t hone them and best of all cuts-better! Try them, a cheap experiment that you are almost guaranteed to enjoy.


  • Glass jars are extremely useful. Despite their weight, standardized glass jars with tin lids have minimal amount of plastic and can get airtight seal. While you can buy these jars, most likely some food that you need to buy would come with one. If you keep the jars you will get enough of them soon enough. Wash them and store mi rads of things in them. Herbs, beans, cheese, pickles, you name it. While lids do have a life time they are cheap to buy and easy to recycle. Tin is not poisonous.

  • Infamous cotton bags… The controversy of the century. Do they save the planet or destroy it. How about the water used to produce them, plastic bag production costs a fraction of a cotton one and beyond. I heard all the counter bullshit that people got from plastic industry and throw around to protect their perceived convenience. Do cotton bags use more resources to produce, yes. Do you use them to the point of break even, perhaps not but at the end they are not toxic films meant to go landfill. They get lost, someone else picks it up and continue to use them. They get damaged, they get repaired. At the end of their life they recycled. Use cotton bags and keep them like you keep your garments.

  • Trash bags. The pinnacle of the civilization. Only household plastic item that is meant to be trash in the first place. There is a classical approach to this recently where people reuse shopping bags as trash bags. I used to use a simple bucket that I dump into dumpster outside. Until somebody has stolen my bucket. This is the same thing I plan to discard cat litter in the future. Just need some more metal buckets with tight lid.


This is the hardest of all. Not only there is a constant capitalist pressure to peruse cheapest option for garment production, there is also the fact that we as humans choose our outfit as an expression and fashion. This makes tackling this problem a double edged sword. One, and some really do, make conscious decisions and go with high quality, long lasting, organic cotton items and pay a premium for them and look like almost identical with others. While this is a valid choice I suffer other side of the problem. Synthetics, mostly Nylon stuff, are an indispensable weaponry in outdoor sports. From life saving applications such as climbing ropes to vitals as water resistive clothing, almost anything one wear or use made out of the same stuff. If anything like this becomes your life or lifestyle one simply cannot avoid using plastics. For my defense outdoor gear, chosen right, are almost indestructible and can outlast you with some exceptions.

  • Elestan or any elastics in your clothing is a bane to durability. I remember my parents replacing elastic bands in our underwear(yes I am that old). At that time it was possible to repair those items with cheaply available band from any store in town. It is not so much an option today when producers simply stitch all together or simply embed elastics into fabric. Any tight fitting, sportive fit elastic elbow and knee parts do and will give away their stretch and becomes sloppy. Besides their low durability for tear, this fact makes any elastics a no go for long term usage of the garment. Most offending items in this category are pants and leggings. I know they look very nice on your butt but it does not worth it trust me.

  • Wool is the super fiber of the nature. It is warm, resists smells and stains. Also very nice to the touch if you can get the expensive stuff. That is the worst part. Something a generation ago seen as low class, commoner’s fabric has become a luxury. Now it seams nobody makes wool items. Occasionally one can found a sweeter or a blanket but you need to really hunt for it. Either that or very expensive options for limited uses such as socks. I do have a lovely blanket from IKEA which was mostly made out of wool and a wrong wash cycle shrink it. I still look for it even after 8 years =(

  • Shoes without any plastic are terrible. I will defend this fact in any circumstance. Old shoes are made that way because absence of rubber and we still insist on making those just out of tradition or fanciness. I cannot put my hatred in words for classical shoes. What I can do best is to find most durable of any shoe and use it until very integrity of the last fiber ceases to exists. Outdoor shoes from some known brands do fair very well in this regard and best part is there is a whole industry of replacing the sole of the shoes which is the first thing that fails. Do your best and get away the least pair of shoes you can and keep them as long as it gets.


Buying groceries these days are plastic shopping. A growing trend of shrink wrapping storms the markets. Almost anything that you can buy from a regular supermarket comes with some form of packaging, predominantly made out of plastics. There are ways to reduce the impact but it costs a lot of time and effort.

  • Drinks as usually as liquids come with some sort of container. Glass is a suitable solution if you have local access to glass recycling. If you can find drinks with deposited bottles that is way better. At best you can make your own drinks from raw ingredients and skip the whole waste associated with drink production and transportation. My favorites are lemonades, iced tea, self carbonated ginger ale, hard cider from apple juice and beer. Go crazy since there is a recipe for every taste!

  • Spices and staple is weirder depending on where you are living. Istanbul as I reside has historically best stocked spice markets. I simply can go, endure the weird reactions and get almost any spice, staple food with a glass jar that I brought along. While sometimes this fails as more stores start to pre-pack their goods even they are in a large bag in front of the store and clerks are reluctant to go into hassle of opening them up for me. Still good solution.

Any tips on how to expand this list? Feel free to email me