The month-long plastic-free challenge that, since its beginnings in 2011, has inspired more than 100 million people in 190 countries to change their habits and help reduce plastic waste.

Many of us are keen to support this vital global movement but don’t know where to start – so here are a few changes you can make at home this July and beyond.

Pick plastic-free flowers: Having fresh flowers in your home brightens a room, but make sure you don’t muddy the water by buying blooms swathed in plastic. Find a local florist who no longer uses single-use plastics, or choose subscription flowers that offer 100 per cent recycled packaging. 

Use refills. You can find refills for shampoo, conditioner, handwash, shower gel, and cleaning products – it's both cheaper and eco-friendly. Alternatively, switch to plastic-free solid shampoo and conditioner bars that last as long as two to three bottles.


Change your shopping habits. Switch to glass bottles for your milk – if you have a local milkman, you can have it delivered straight to your door. Just wash the bottles after use and swap them back at the next delivery. Shop for loose fruit and veg, pasta and rice, or join a veg box scheme to have produce brought to your door.

Repurpose your bags. If your plastic bags are mounting up (just how many bags for life do you really need?), consider giving them a new purpose. Use them as wastebasket liners, or hang them from your car headrest to make the perfect bin for children eating and drinking on long journeys.

Leaf it out. Ditch the tea bags and use loose leaf tea with an infuser or strainer for a zero-waste way to enjoy your daily cuppa.

Be informed. Work out how much plastic you use at home in just one week by putting every piece of plastic you use into a box once you’ve finished with it. Then count it all up at the end of the week - you might be unpleasantly surprised!