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Our kitchens are the heart of our homes. For some, it’s a happy place, and for others it’s a place where family and friends gather around to share great stories and memories. Unfortunately, our kitchens are also a hotspot for waste and environmental harm, but as more and more of us are embracing a greener lifestyle, there are many ways we can all make changes and introduce eco-friendly alternatives into our lives.

Here are a few easy eco-friendly swaps to help you get started:

Swap your metal or plastic scourer to a scourer made from coconut husks

Metal scourers are made from galvanized stainless steel or copper which are made from mined ore. Not only is mining harmful to our environment in the short and long term, it is also harmful to our health. What’s more is that most of these scourers end up in landfill and the metal does not get recycled. Nylon scourers are the worst offenders of them all – they’re made from plastics by processing crude oil and these materials end up our oceans. This explains the increasing quantities of nylon fibers being found in seafood!

EcoCoconut’s scourers are completely plastic free and made from 100% natural coconut fiber from the husk of brown coconuts. This means there are no harmful chemicals or plastics that can pollute our waterways or poison our seafood. They’re great on hard surfaces and safe to use on all kinds of pots and pans, and when you’re done with it, just add it to your compost!

Swap your chemical-filled dishwashing liquid to one that is 100% plant-based

Dish washing may seem quite innocent; a little squirt of soap, a few wafts of ‘Lemon Essence’ or ‘Vanilla & Rose’, some bubbles to clean your plates and bowls, then it all goes down the drain, and all that remains are the squeaky clean dishes. Except that’s not the case. Unfortunately, something as innocent as dish washing liquid has a dark side: the chemicals lurking in the liquid – artificial fragrance, formaldehyde and sulfuric acid to name a few.

Resparkle’s Natural Dishwashing Liquid is made from 100% plant-based ingredients. It even contains essential oils which are not only better for our waterways, they also leave a delightful smell of lemon, sweet orange and grapefruit – the real stuff. If that’s not enough to convince you, you can even go completely waste free with their Refill-Return Program where you can return your liquid pouches for a refill and earn credit!

One for the kids – swap your child’s vinyl or plastic lunchbox out for a stainless steel Bento box

Firstly, anything made of vinyl is bad news as your child’s soft lunchbox may be exposing them to harmful levels of lead. Secondly, let’s talk plastic. You may be buying a BPA-free plastic lunchbox but there’s more to it than meets the eye. Plastic lasts forever and is made from a non-renewable resource which is toxic to the environment. BPA stands for BisPhenol A, a chemical added to make food containers and water bottles. But watch out! Manufacturers have been found to just replace the BPA with another member of the Bisphenol family, such as BPS or BPF, so your child’s lunchbox very well could still be harming the environment.

Ever Eco’s Bento Boxes are BPA free, PVC free, lead and pthalatate free, and are made from 100% FDA-approved stainless steel. They are generously sized to fit snacks, morning tea and lunch, and come in one, two or three compartment boxes, and a stackable two-tier Bento box. They’re easy to clean, perfect for portion sizing and have a minimalist design. What’s not to love?

We think of our homes as our sanctuary, yet so many of our household items contain toxic chemicals. When we buy eco-friendly products, we’re not only sending a message to those around us, we’re also sending a message to companies that we no longer support their products and practices.

We’ve only got one small planet, so don’t throw away your opportunity to make a difference.

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