Top 10 reusable swaps that you can make today!

Rebecca Wilson, passionate about recycling across South Yorkshire
Rebecca Wilson
9 Mar 2021

Reusing is all about keeping items useful for as long as possible and it is an important step in cutting down our waste. Even doing a couple of these swaps below will benefit our planet.

Which ones have you tried?

Reusable swaps you can make today

Water bottles

An easy switch that can help reduce the amount of plastic in our environment.

If just 10% of people in the UK refilled a re-usable water bottle once a week it would save around 340 million plastic bottles a year!


Many restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops will also refill them for free, so you can save money too.


Read more reasons why we love them here



Coffee cups

Who doesn’t love a hot drink on the go? But did you know that 7 million disposable coffee cups are used every day in the UK? This equates to 2.5 billion a year, which is enough to fill the Royal Albert Hall! 

Next time you are at the coffee shop, remember to take your reusable cup with you (some places may even offer a little discount for using them!)


Read more reasons why you should switch to a reusable cup here 



Shopping bags

Since the 5p charge for bags came in a few years ago, there has been a huge reduction in the amount of plastic bag litter found in our environment. If used once a week, four or five reusable bags will replace 520 plastic bags a year!



Beeswax wraps

These are great for keeping food fresh and are an eco-friendly alternative to Clingfilm.


Check out more reusable gadgets for keeping food fresher for longer 




Great for picnics and lunch on the go! And an eco-friendly alternative to single-use plastic cutlery.

Top tip: if you are getting a takeaway or meal to go, make sure you tell them that you do not need any plastic cutlery.




The sale of single-use plastic straws is now banned in England, so why not switch to a reusable alternative?




Looking fashionable shouldn’t cost the earth but a staggering £140 million worth of used but still wearable clothes goes to landfill every year in the UK.


Buying second hand clothes from vintage stores, online or from charity shops instead of buying brand new clothes is an easy way you can help reduce their impact on the planet and save yourself some money too!


Read more about ways to reduce clothes waste here



School uniform

Kids grow up so fast and with that comes the need for a new school uniform. UK families spend around £52m each year on new school uniforms at an average cost of £230 per child, more for secondary school pupils, and this does not include PE kits.


Look out for local school uniform swap schemes and when your child outgrows them, be sure to pass them onto friends or family or ask your school if they accept donations.



Tea infusers and refillable coffee pods

We truly are a nation of hot drink lovers! In fact, it is estimated that 170 million are made every single day in the UK!


Switching to loose-leaf tea and refillable coffee pods could help reduce waste (and the used tea leaves and coffee grounds are great for composting).


Read our top ways to make a waste less hot drink here




Reusable nappies are becoming popular with parents all across the UK. From birth to potty training, the average baby will go through up to 6,000 disposable nappies, which cost hundreds of pounds and take hundreds of years to decompose. In comparison, a baby only needs 20-30 real nappies, which can also be used for future siblings.


Read our blog about reusable nappies here


Also, be sure to check out the South Yorkshire Nappy Library for expert advice and information on their nappy loan service.



Want more reusing tips? Check out our Reusing page here


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