16 Clever Products To Jumpstart Your Zero Waste Lifestyle

by | Dec 1, 2020

A core tenet of lazy environmentalism is that we are mostly lazy. We want to do our part for the planet. We just don’t want to work very hard (or, at all) to make it happen.

We want environmentally friendly products that do the work for us. Products that look great, work divinely, and reduce our environmental impact all at once, like magic.

By this standard, leading a zero-waste lifestyle sounds hard. Intimidating. Like work. Or worse still, sacrifice. If zero waste living were a color, it would be beige. Not a neutral, trendy beige. More like a moribund, Soviet-era, concrete tenement beige.

This view of zero waste living, however, is outdated. In point of fact, living a modern lifestyle that banishes waste to the trash heaps of history is not only distinctly possible; it’s preferable. Today, eliminating waste from our lifestyles actually improves our lives. It’s simply a more convenient, more stylish, and more delightful mode of existence.

The reason? The people – mostly designers and entrepreneurs – have revolted. They have renounced beige and are thereby dragging the rest of us into a beautifully designed, less wasteful, and more joyful future.

As a case in point, view this video from Otherware introducing the brand’s vibrant, modern reusable cutlery, chopsticks, and straw.

It doesn’t hurt that Pharrell Williams (yes, that Pharell Williams) is a partner behind the project. That’s really kind of the point, isn’t it?

The world of sustainable living, and specifically zero waste living, is brighter than ever. Now is a great time to switch to products that will eliminate your waste and change your life for the better.

Here are 16 sustainable solutions that make reducing waste easily attainable and satisfying.

jumpstart your zero waste lifestyle

1. Bite toothpaste

Toothpaste tubes are quite the challenge to recycle. Most recycling centers can’t handle the layers of aluminum and plastic all laminated together, so they end up in a landfill. Bite toothpaste bits solve the problem by eliminating the tube. You get a refillable glass jar (glass is just about the easiest thing to recycle) containing bits of toothpaste. They’re effective, delightful, and simple to use. When you’re all done, Bite sends you a recyclable refill package of toothpaste bite bits to fill your jar up again.

Price: $30 (includes a 4-month supply)

2. Loop Store

Your Seventh Generation laundry detergent and hundreds of other products you recognize are now available in beautiful, reusable packaging. Purchase products on the Loop e-commerce store. When you’re done with them, Loop takes the packaging back (via UPS), so it can be industrially cleaned and reused again and again.

The system is simple. The benefits are many. You enjoy better-looking versions of the products you know and love. Our communities and ecosystems no longer have to contend with so much waste. Loop’s offering is increasingly available at Walgreens and Kroger stores too.

Price: Products are priced comparably to conventional versions. However, expect to pay deposits for Loop’s durable, reusable delivery tote and the reusable packages.

3. Be. Brush by Goodwell

8 out of 10 Lazy Environmentalists agree, electric toothbrushes clean teeth better (they certainly require less effort). But they also require power, which nearly always means there’s a base unit that plugs into a wall socket, which means we clean our teeth and gums using energy that pollutes the planet. The Be. Brush quite literally puts a different twist on the power toothbrush. That’s because the power comes from just a few manual twists of the toothbrush’s head with your hand. No plug. No batteries. Just healthy, beautiful smiles.

Price: $85 (pre-order)

4. Floss From By Humankind

The most beautiful dental floss you’ll ever encounter. The reusable, refillable case is made of plastic, but the good news is that you’ll never throw it away. The replenishable, biodegradable floss is made in Italy of high-quality silk and infused with vegan wax to glide between your teeth. The floss is spun around a sugarcane-based bioplastic spool.

Price: $12 starter kit (includes a free case and a two-refill floss pack)

* Note: Subscription floss refills are $12 for each two-pack.

5. Deodorant by Myro

Myro creates refillable, plant-powered deodorant that protects you and the planet. Choose your case. Choose your scent. Myro then sends you your all-natural deodorant. Sign up for the subscription plan, and receive your deodorant refill pods every 3, 4, or 6 months. Each pod is made with 50% less plastic than conventional drugstore deodorants. Multiple scents to choose from (you can switch your scents whenever you like). Stay dry and smell fresh and cut some plastic waste out of your life.

Price: $10 for the starter kit and $10 per refill pod

6. The Guardian Conditioner Bar by esthique

A plant-based, solid conditioner bar can give you all the healthy hair benefits without you ever having to hit the — single-use disposable plastic — bottle. All ingredients in this conditioner bar are made from natural, ethically sourced, sustainable, and effective ingredients. Since the Guardian delivers the same amount of conditioner as 5 liquid bottles, it cuts down on water consumption too.

Price: $17.99

7. Rockwell Razor

Don’t be intimidated by this handsome single-blade razor. It’s old school good looks belie its modern innovations, like its patented adjustable design that eliminates irritation and razor burn. Adjustable beginner settings enable both men and women to get a smooth shave without nicks or cuts. A two-year supply of 100 recyclable, stainless steel blades is just $15. That’s a mighty attractive incentive to permanently transition away from disposable plastic razors and razor blades.

Price: $50 and up (includes 1 razor and 5 stainless steel razor blades, a 1-month supply).

8. DIY flushable wipes by fohm

Fohm turns the Charmin or, better yet, the Seventh Generation, or better still, the Who Gives A Crap toilet paper into a flushable, biodegradable wet wipe. And while conventional wet wipe brands bill their products as flushable, there’s truth in that advertising provided you don’t mind calling a plumber every-so-often to clean out the backed up septic system. Fohm’s dispenser spurts out a small amount of paraben-free, fragrance-free, and pH-balanced cleansing foam onto the toilet paper you already own to leave your bum feeling clean and fresh.

Price: $49 starter kit (includes 1 touchless dispenser with a rechargeable battery and 1 bottle of cleanser, which displaces pounds of wet wipes)

9. fizzi by sodatream

When, why, and how millions upon millions of cans of sparkling water seeped into the mainstream’s cultural drinking habits is already the subject of doctoral dissertations. But there is a clever and satisfying alternative that saves you money and quenches your thirst. SodaStream’s Fizzi is the sleek, stylish sparkling water solution that sits elegantly on your countertop. Fill the refillable bottle with water, insert it into the device, press the bubbles dispensing button, and you’re all set.

Price: $89.99 (includes 1 sparkling water maker, 1 carbonation cylinder & 1 1L bottle)

10. a good bottle by A Good company

A reusable water bottle is a commonly appreciated tool in our zero waste arsenal. What better way to take hot and cold drinks with us and avoid the use of disposable single-use bottles? A Good Bottle stands out from the crowd with its built-to-last quality, a broad range of appealing colors, and stellar environmental credentials; the bottle itself is one of the few on the market made of recycled materials, in this case, 100% recycled Swedish stainless steel.

Price: $35

11. bamboo takeaway mug by ekobo

Many reusable coffee mugs abound. However, few are as pleasing to gaze upon and to sip out of as Ekobo’s 16oz version. Rarer still, while most varieties are made of conventional plastic, this eye-pleaser is made from FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified bamboo, a rapidly growing and renewable plant. Granted, the top and sleeve are made of silicone (not eco-ideal), but both components are precision-crafted to ensure a sublime sipping experience. Just drink, rinse, and repeat.

Price: $18

12. Pebble by otherware

Easily rid single-use plastic from your routine when on the go. Heck, Pebble’s reusable cutlery, chopsticks, and straw are so delightfully designed, you’d be forgiven for making use of the kit’s contents while dining at home. Not only are these products aesthetically eye-popping, but they are also made of impressively thoughtful materials. Pebble’s case is made of recycled plastic from old CDs. Handles are made of recycled plastic from former food packaging. The tips are made of recyclable, anodized titanium coated steel.

Price: $59

13. The Clean Essentials by Blueland

Blueland’s reusable, refillable cleaners rely on mighty albeit mini concentrated tablets. Add water. Insert tablet. And you’re ready to clean. Subscribe to receive refill tablets regularly or place reorders whenever you like. It’s a beautiful way to save money, save space, and save the planet. Plus, you won’t find any yucky stuff like triclosan, parabens, and phthalates in these powerful cleaners from Blueland. They’re formulated with certified, safe ingredients.

Price: $39 (includes 3 reusable bottles, 1 reusable foaming hand soap bottle, and 4 tablets; Multi-Surface, Glass + Mirror, Bathroom, and Foaming Hand Soap)

14. Get A Load of This Laundry Bars by Trumans

Laundry detergent can be simple, waste-free, and toxin-free. Truman’s fragrance-free, dissolvable bars are septic-friendly and clean powerfully thanks to its nontoxic antimicrobial technology. Say goodbye to the laundry detergent plastic bottle. You may miss it taking up all that space on top of your laundry machine, but you truly no longer need it in your life.

Price: $29 (60 pack)

15. Recharger + Rechargeable Batteries by eneloop

From smoke alarms to Roku remote controls, batteries are omnipresent. Rechargeable batteries are a better way to power our devices that can zero out waste, alleviate guilt (resulting from when you secretly toss your dead batteries in the regular trash), and save you money over time. Eneloop’s charger works with AA and AAA rechargeable batteries. Once you’ve tried them, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without rechargeables.

Price: $25.81 (Charger + 4-Pack)

16. Reusable Notebook by Rocketbook

Cutting down trees to make paper? No longer. Take notes, write your masterpiece, or just doodle during class with a reusable notebook from Rocketbook. This 32-page lined notebook can be used and reused pretty much forever. Save your handwritten notes to Google drive, iCloud, Dropbox, and more. Then wipe your Rocketbook’s pages with a damp cloth to start anew. With Rocketbook, you can also transcribe and digitally convert your handwritten notes to text.

Price: $27.59 (includes one 8.5″ x 11″ lined notebook, 1 pen, and 1 microfiber cloth — other styles and colors available)

A Heads Up: Our posts may contain affiliate links. We frequently write about products and services to help you shop more sustainably. It won't cost you a penny, but we receive a commission from our affiliate partners when you buy through our links. It helps keeps the LED lights on.

more sustainable discoveries

Share via
Copy link