Friday, February 19, 2010

Favorite Reusables

Packaging is important.

Some packaging just doesn't last, and it ends up being thrown in landfills or choking a sea turtle. If marketers were smart, they'd realize that if they put more thought into how their packages could be reused, they'd be stealthily recruiting secret advertisers who carry their product packaging around even when the contents are gone.

For example, I can usually be found carrying this used Voss water bottle. It's glass, so I don't have to worry about chemicals leaching into my water and causing boy frogs to grow frog boobs.

I love Illy Coffee, but it's too expensive for every day. When I used up the coffee, I kept the can and store generic-brand coffee in it from the bulk section of my supermarket. It's much easier to scoop coffee out of this can than a paper bag.

My iPod headphones were always getting tangled when I threw them into my backpack. An Altoid tin makes the perfect carrying case. An iPod nano can fit in there too, although it's a little tight.
This once held Burt's Bees face mask. Now I put some Tums in there for traveling (airport food -- not good for the stomach). I love how it looks like something that belongs on the shelves at an old-timey apothecary. These jars are great for other medications bought in bulk -- again, it's a lot easier to grab a couple of ibuprofen out of this jar than to pour them out of the massive container you get at Costco.

When selecting items at the store, it's worth it to pay a little more to buy an item that is encased in non-disposable packaging. Of course, finding things to reuse is best, but choosing items that you can recycle is great too. The key is to think about it while you're at the store, rather than after you get home. It all goes back to the fact that being greener is about being more intentional all the time. So next time you see me in the grocery store, and I'm taking five minutes to choose the particular brand of coffee or water I want, just be patient with me.

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