18 everyday items you can SWITCH to be more sustainable

July 01, 2020

18 everyday items you can SWITCH to be more sustainable

The #RidersOnAMission Sustainability Challenge is all about encouraging equestrians to make small changes to their everyday habits to be more sustainable.

Of the three categories for change in this years Challenge, ‘Switch’ is potentially the easiest one for you all to get involved in. The idea behind ‘Switch’ is super simple – pick a few items that you consume regularly and swap your usual product choice for something more eco-friendly. 

We’ve suggested a list of 18 switches you can make below. Of course, there are loads of sustainable alternatives out there, but we’ve picked out a few that we’ve discovered and loved along the way.

If you’re wondering how to assess how ‘sustainable’ a product is, check out a blog post we wrote a few months ago with a simple list of criteria.

 

In summary, think about:

Packaging: Is it recyclable? Better still, is it compostable? Is there a zero-waste alternative that will do the same job?

Ingredients: Will they cause harm to marine life when washed down the sink? Are they tested on animals? Will they potentially cause you harm? Are these ingredients depleting the world's natural resources?

Sourcing: Where were your products made? Were the workers treated fairly?Were the materials sourced sustainably?

Brand values: Does the brand you’re buying from care about the environment?Are they giving back? Do you care if the profit they generate is used for good not for bad?

Quality: Will this product work exactly as you need it to? Will it last as long as you need it to?

 

The Switch - Humans 

 

Household Cleaning Products:

The obvious choices here are Ecover and Method. Both brands produce highly effective, broad ranges of cleaning products, but they both come in single-use plastic packaging and there is some doubt over whether Ecover is still cruelty-free given its acquisition by SC Johnson in 2017.

Honest Riders loves:

  • Fill – offering refills of most of your household cleaning products
  • The Bower Collective - pick out the bits you need, and the frequency, and it all gets delivered straight to your door
  • Bio D
  • Ocean Saver and Iron & Velvet – for their plastic-free cleaning sachets (these are a game-changer!)

 

Deodorant:

Look for products that aren’t tested on animals and avoid the use of aerosols. We’re loving the plastic-free movement in this category too.

Honest Riders loves:

  • Ben & Anna - these roll-on sticks come in cardboard packaging and use only natural ingredients
  • Pit Putty – available in recyclable tins and yep, they’re as fun as they sound!

 

Shampoo:

Yep, we hear what you’re saying with the shampoo bars, they’re tricky to get used to aren’t they? The trick is to find the right one for your hair type. Once you have, it’s a total game-changer – think how many plastic bottles you’ll avoid adding to landfill. Bear in mind that once you remove the SLS, Parabens and other nasties from your haircare, it will take your hair a week or two to adjust, but you’ll end up with shinier, better conditioned hair once you get there…

 

Honest Riders loves:

  • Beauty Kubes – these packaging-free cubes are a stroke of genius!
  • My Hair Care Bars– these bars are the absolute best we’ve found
  • LOR S2, Moo Hair and Lani Hair – if you can’t get away from liquid shampoos then this is your answer. These come in glass bottles with aluminium lids so 100% recyclable

 

Soap:

Moving from bottled liquid to bars is possibly the easiest switch there is! In times like these, with lots of hand washing going on, there really is no better time to stop buying liquid soap. Soap bars have moved on leaps and bounds too, so they no longer leave your hands feeling dry.

 

Honest Riders loves:

  • Bramblewood soaps - we've been searching high and low for a natural, plastic-free, palm-oil free soap for humans and boy have we found it! Available in several different scents and ready to totally jazz up your bathroom...

 

Search Engine:

Yes this is a bit of an odd one, but did you know there’s a search engine that uses its profits to support sustainable causes. So each search you make contributes to a better world. Could it be more simple?

Add the extension here: Ecosia

 

Food Wrap:

What do you think happens to all that cling-film you use to preserve items in your fridge? Yep, its not recyclable and ends up in landfill. Did you know that cling film can also leak harmful toxins? Yuk.

Why not pick an alternative that you can use time and time again? Such a simple switch.

 

Honest Riders loves:

  • Boc’n’Roll sandwich wraps – not just for sandwiches! Just give these a rinse each time and they’re good to go again!
  • Silicone Food Covers - the ideal replacement for covering cheese, fruit and so much more

 

Make-up

Now this is a huge topic! If you’re going to make changes here, think about how you can reduce the amount of harmful chemicals used and switch to cruelty-free brands. Remember that ‘cruelty-free’ is also fairly complex as some brands that claim to be, are actually owned by organisations that continue to fund testing of ingredients so that they can sell to the Chinese market. Check out a blog we wrote about it last year.

 

Honest Riders loves:

SO many brands that we’ve tried and loved, but if you’re looking to make the switch, we highly recommend checking out The Cruelty Free Beauty Box as a great place to start. This small business is owned by the lovely Chloe, who we’re going to chat to LIVE on our Instagram this month.

 

Wipes:

Such an unnecessary product! Face wipes, baby butt wipes, tack wipes, the whole lot contain plastic and end up in landfill. There are SO many ways around this. Find yourself a lovely face flannel that can be washed, pick a compostable towel, just step away from the single-use wipes…

 

Honest Riders loves:

  • Marleys Monsters – we now use so many products from these guys. From organic bamboo washcloths to facial rounds. All washable and all really fun and easy to use

 

Energy Supplier:

Did you know that you can easily switch to an energy supplier/tariff that uses mostly renewables for power? In fact, it could even save you money on your energy bills! How’s that for a switch!

 

Honest Riders loves:

 

Personal Care utensils:

Again, another really easy set of switches involve items you use daily. Try cutting the plastic from your toothbrush, toilet roll (yep, some of it contains plastic!) and cotton wool.

 

Honest Riders loves:

 

The Switch - Horses

 

Shampoo

When it comes to horse shampoo there are a plethora of options. If you’re looking to make the switch to something more sustainable, take a closer look at ingredients, packaging and animal-testing.

It goes without saying that all of the products we sell at Honest Riders are cruelty-free and 100% natural wherever possible, but we’ve picked out a few favourites that go the extra mile…

 

Honest Riders loves…

  • Honest Horse Shampoo Bars – well we couldn’t write a blog post about sustainable shampoos and not include a shameless plug now could we!? Seriously though, these are a game-changer and the most sustainable shampoo we sell
  • The Alchemists Garden Herbal Shampoo - if you’re still after liquid shampoo, this comes in bottles made from sugar cane which is biodegradable and fully recyclable. The ingredients are 100% natural and cruelty-free too!

 

Fly Repellent

Both of these products are handmade in the UK using only natural ingredients (not only that they really work which is always a bonus!)

 

Feed and Feed Supplements

Now, we’re going to hand over to the expert Donna aka. The Horse Feed Guru here as she is the font of all horse feed and supplement knowledge. We’ll be doing an Instagram LIVE session with Donna on the 27th July at 7PM, so come and join us to pick her brains!

 

Tack Cleaning Kit

It’s super easy to reduce your plastic waste when it comes to tack cleaning. Pick products that come in tins and make the switch to a plastic-free cleaning sponge and you’re winning!

 

Honest Riders loves…

  • Mother Bee Leather Balm – this stuff absolutely rocks! And, it comes in an alu tin which is fully recyclable
  • Scrubbies – we use these nifty compostable cleaning pads for all our tack cleaning needs. They come in packs of two so you can have one for the initial clean and the other for wiping on the leather balm

 

Hoof Care

Another super easy swap! Watch out for solvents, crude oil derivatives and tar in some mainstream hoof balms and oils, which can end up drying out the hooves and clogging pores.

 

Honest Riders loves…

  • You can’t go wrong with either Silverfeet or Red Horse Products Hoof Balms – both use naturally derived ingredients
  • If you’re looking for more sustainable packaging, check out the Mother Bee Hoof Balm

 

Bedding

Argh, the endless shavings bags! Fear not, we’re going to be chatting to Zoe from Ethos Bedding on the 29th July to find out how the production methods and packaging they use will revolutionise sustainability in the horse bedding world!

 

Minor Wound Care

Natural is often best when it comes to cuts and scrapes.

 

Honest Riders loves…

We highly recommend using the Well Gel ‘Spray It’ anti-bac spray on fresh wounds to get rid of harmful bacteria that may have gathered there.

Follow up with either Red Horse Products Honey Heel or Mother Bee Soothe & Protect to stop the wound getting infected and aid super speedy healing

We also highly recommend Well Gel Original for a wide range of ailments including fly bites, bruising and grazes.

 

That’s it!

 

We’d love to know what you decide to SWITCH. Tag us on Instagram or Facebook @honest.riders and use the hashtag #RidersOnAMission so that we can share your progress!





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