Whether you’ve been leading the pack and using your own sustainable shopping bags for years now, or you’re a relative newbie and are still struggling to remember to keep a few bags handy in the car, we think Plastic Free July is the perfect excuse to update your look with some reusable ‘accessories’. Because Green is the new black, sustainable is chic, and plastic is so last season.
Switching single use plastic bags for reusable alternatives as part of the single-use plastic bag ban is just the beginning when it comes to working towards being plastic-free, but there are couple of quick wins that are easy to work into your Gold Coast lifestyle. Keeping you looking good, and the planet feeling feeling good – win-win right?
With endless options, colours and uses, think of the shift not just as a move to better the environment, but also a move to better your style! Here are our top picks for sustainable-chic accessories – Shot on location right here at Stockland Burleigh Heads, with all items available for purchase from some of our favourite retailers.
In the bag
We are obsessed with our Hunt & Gather Grocer string shopping bags. Here’s why – they are 100% organic cotton (put these babies in the compost and they’ll be completely gone in 2 – 5 months, depending on conditions. Literally, returning to the earth), fair trade and sustainably manufactured, PETA approved, and the passion-project of a young, local Gold Coast environmental advocate #shoplocal.
Plus, for a limited time we are getting you started on your plastic free path, by giving away 1000* of these bags to celebrate #plasticfreejuly. Visit our promotional page for all of the info. (Not quick enough to score a freebie? La Pearl will be retailing these beauties after the promotion ends so you can collect enough for your entire weekly grocery shop!).
Mural by Frank & Mimi, back entry, located outside the Post Office
California sweater, Sportsgirl, $49.95 | Vintage jean, Sportsgirl $59.95 | Nike sneaker, Sportspower, $100 | Sunday Somewhere sunglasses, Just Sunnies, $299 | Delicious fruit by Earth Markets | String shopping bag FREE from Stockland Customer Care when you spend $25 or more in specialty retailers*
But first, coffee
A morning coffee with mates or neighbours is standard here in Burleigh, so this is a habit we could all do with picking up. We have one helluva coffee addiction in Australia, and single use coffee cups are one of the largest culprits when it comes to waste clogging up landfill, with 1 billion coffee cups disposed of by Aussies each year. Imagine if we took the Gold Coast’s share out of that, what a great start! Plus with many reusable coffee cup options, such as the popular ‘Keep Cup’, having a closure over the mouthpiece, sounds like an improvement right there already! (Hot coffee spill on your hand anyone? Long black drinkers, you know what we’re talking about.)
Reusable coffee cup, Healthfood Central, Assorted styles and prices | Nike sneakers, Sportspower, $100 | Vintage crop jean, Sportsgirl, $59.95 | California sweater, Sportsgirl, $49.95
Sip it up
Smoothies, super juices, iced lattes (and cocktails maybe)… delicious drinks are the perfect complement to our life here in the sunshine. But did you know that every plastic straw you use will out-live not just you, but your children? Plus, these straws are manufactured from a by-product of petroleum which requires a huge amount of energy and natural resources to extract and refine. For a little item that we only use for a couple of minutes, seems like an awfully large impact doesn’t it? A reusable straw, (glass, stainless steel even bamboo options are available) slips easily into any bag but makes a massive difference. The hardest part is remembering to ask for your drink of choice, minus the straw (practice makes perfect, trust us). With movements like thelaststraw.com.au, you might notice sooner rather than later that you are finding them in your glass much less often. Cheers to that!
Stainless steel drinking cup, Healthfood Central, $32.95 pk of 4 | Stainless steel straw, $16.95, pk of 4 | Venice Beach vintage look tee, Sportsgirl, $29.95 | Scrunchies, Sportgirl, $9.95ea | Shot next to Just Sunnies
High quality H2O
Keeping on top of the 2L of water a day thing can be hit and miss, but maybe if your drink bottle matches your outfit…? We are a largely health-conscious group here on the Gold Coast, so water is often the drink of choice when we need to quench our thirst while we are out and about, but if you’re without your own bottle, you’re often left with no choice but to buy a single use plastic bottle – a trap for even the best intentioned of sustainable shoppers. If you can get into the habit of bringing your bottle with you, not only is water on the go cheaper or free, but your drink will stay deliciously cool. Almost as cool as you’ll look with your snazzy new drink bottle right?
If spring is your thing, fill up your bottle at the @_water3_ vending machine near Boost Juice with chilled natural spring water from as little as $1.
Tip: Re-use a box from Earth Markets on your next fruit & veg shop. You'll find a stash around the corner, opposite Dollar Stretcher.
Stainless steel water bottle, Healthfood Central, $41.95 | Denim overall, Longlost at Surf Dive n Ski, $89.99 | ‘Ahoy’ cap, Longlost at Surf Dive n Ski, $29.99 | Stripe tee, Spare at Surf Dive n Ski, $29.99 | Sunday Somewhere ‘Jesse’ Sunglasses, Just Sunnies, $309 | Converse sneakers, Surf Dive n Ski, $100 | Rattan woven bag, Sportsgirl, $79.95 | Fresh produce by Earth Markets | String shopping bag FREE from Stockland Customer Care when you spend $25 or more in specialty retailers*
Plastic Free July? How about just plain ‘Plastic Free’? Increasingly so, your choice of shopping bag or coffee cup says just as much about your style as your t-shirt. So luckily, going green never looked so good. To find your favourite store visit our store directory here.
Floral longsleeve shirt, Sportspril, $89.95 | Denim overall dress, Sportsgirl, $89.95 | Natural woven shoulder bag, Sportsgirl, $59.95 | String shopping bag in blush pink FREE from Stockland Customer Care when you spend $25 or more in specialty retailers*