Three Simple Ways to rid Plastic & Toxic Vinyl from your Daily Life.

Three Simple Ways to rid Plastic & Toxic Vinyl from your Daily Life.

Plastic is bad for you. It’s bad for our planet. It’s made of…petroleum, which causes wars and environmental devastation on the way in, and pollution and cancer (all those added chemicals to make it stretchy for your yoga pants/water bottle/plastic bag/can of beans don’t help) on the way out. And…it never goes away. Little sea creatures eat it, bigger fish it and eat them, and we eat fish.


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There’s plenty of well-known ways to get rid of plastic (don’t use plastic water bottles, say. Skip the bag and bring a tote, say). I’m including vinyl, here, too.

Here’s three unusual ones, that are key, that I do every day:

1. Remember: No on vinyl, and that’s final (Umbra). Get rid of your vinyl/plastic shower curtain, and buy hemp (I got mine off of Etsy). In the winter, make sure the hemp shower curtain dries out over a vent. In the summer, make sure the windows are open and it air dries. I do this and it’s easy peasy. You don’t want hot water mixing with vinyl and your naked body.

2. Yoga pants. Stop wearing plastic when you exercise. Exercise = hot sweat + plastic + chemicals to make your clothes stretchy. This could apply to those plastic foam trucker hats, too. Wear natural fibers that can handle movement. Wear organic, or secondhand. Icebreaker is amazing for undies. Get plastic off your body (that goes for sunglasses, hats, shirts, shorts, socks, underwear…all of it. If it says poly…no good).


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3. To-go coffee cups are plastic-lined, and bleached paper, usually. You don’t want to pour hot liquids in them and then pour those hot liquids in you. Bleach kills life downstream. Avoid all that. Instead, bring your own or enjoy for-here. Plastic cups, like those on airlines, are a no-no. Waxed paper cups are great for water and cold. Paper straws, or bring your own straw. The compostable plasticy stuff isn’t great, though it’s better than plastic.





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Marilyn Regan Jul 2, 2018 1:06pm

Great ideas. Thank you for sharing.

Lynette Johnson Jun 6, 2018 7:57pm

What about prescription bottles? No way around this one is there?

Nikki Weigel Jun 5, 2018 12:58pm

What about picking up dog poo? That’s one I know I use plastic bags for...and I’ve been trying to figure out how in the heck NOT to! What do you to for Red dog?

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Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of Elephant Journal & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat.” Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword’s Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by “Greatist”, Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: “the mindful life” beyond the choir & to all those who didn’t know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, touches on modern relationships from a Buddhist point of view. His dream of 9 years, the Elephant “Ecosystem” will find a way to pay 1,000s of writers a month, helping reverse the tide of low-quality, unpaid writing & reading for free online.