Festivals are insanely fun, rain or shine, but the inevitable trash you'll be dancing on is less fun and just insane. You can easily do your part to reduce it with a few simple zero waste swaps, leaving you free to have a wild time and stay green this summer!
This bad boy will be your saviour, no question. Re-fill it for free at the water points provided all over the site to keep you hydrated in the sun, to clean your teeth (and your bod when the baby wipes vanish), and in that stuffy tent, a cool metal bottle on the back of your neck will feel amazing.
If you're a coffee addict like me you'll go through plenty of coffee cups at a festival! Most of these cardboard cups are actually lined with plastic and cannot be recycled so a reusable coffee cup will save hundreds of disposables, and some places even offer a discount (or at least a big smile) for bringing your own.
Large festivals have a strict no glass policy, so if you want to save a few (or a lot) of those flimsy paper pints, bring your own stainless steel reusable pint. Straws are not recyclable and thousands will be discarded after a single use, finding their way into rivers and seas as often as they make it to landfill. Get yourself a reusable stainless steel or bamboo straw and prevent a mountain of trash!
An absolute must have. Use them to clean up spills, as a towel, to wash dirty cups, to dry wet hands, to sit on, to shade sunburn, as a scarf, to wrap gifts or fragile items, cut off a strip as a plaster... the list goes on!
Bar soap like castile can be your all in one cleaner for hands, hair, body, clothes and whatever reusable items you need to wash. Kept in a soap tin along with your loo roll in a small bag you can even have the luxury of washing your hands rather than using sticky hand disinfectant after braving the festival loos.
Plastic toothbrushes are not recyclable, but luckily there are an increasing number of companies out there providing bamboo or wooden toothbrushes that can be composted at home when they reach the end of their use. Toothpaste tubes are similar in that they cannot be recycled, but there are dentist approved toothpaste recipes available online as well as plenty of toothpaste alternatives that can be purchased in recyclable packaging. As for the all important deodorant, there are zero waste options such as solid deodorant bars, rocksalt or simple baking soda to keep you fresh. Natural, organic sunscreen can also be purchased in recyclable containers, or if you're a bit more scientific there are even doctor approved zero waste recipes for sunscreen online.
People go wild with their fashion at a festival, but will you really wear that sequinned playsuit or neon mankini again? If you will, kudos! If not, then try checking out your local charity shops and flea markets for unique fashion items for a bargain. Or even have a pre-festival clothes swap with your friends! Natural fibres will breathe better in the heat and keep you warmer in the cold, so with some careful label checking you can look, feel, and maybe even smell fabulous for a bargain, saving those pennies for the festival itself!
There is so much to see (and to buy) at a festival, so bring a backpack or a reusable shopping bag to carry all your new goodies and refuse the plastic carrier bags.
It's so easy to grab a few plastic wrapped breakfast bars or crisps as easy nibbles for the campsite, but all that packaging might outlive you in landfill! A quick online search yields thousands of quick, simple and tasty recipes for your favourite treats that you can bring in your super cool Wonder Woman lunchbox (ahem) or whatever biscuit tins you have lying around. Most home made treats, like banana bread or brownies, will stay fresh when stored in a metal container tucked under your tent
Many festivals have great sustainability goals and eco-friendly ethics; Boomtown, for instance, has the Ecobond scheme where a binbag of landfill or recycling can be exchanged for £10 in cash! Before attending your festival check their website to see what they are doing to help our environment during and after the event. And most importantly of all, use the bins, don't abuse them!
Comments will be approved before showing up.