Making Life Biodegradable & Eco Friendly

niamh on stairs


I’ve recently opened an Etsy shop and all of my packaging is biodegradable and compostable so you’re doing your little bit for the planet one step at a time. 2021 was the year I finally put my foot down on numerous things – including my impact on the planet. I have always taken my lunch in snack boxes to save on single use cling films. I’ve always taken a few extra foldable bags to carry my shopping to stop having numerous plastic bags around the house and my bedroom. I’m very fortunate to work with a company who uses biodegradable resources to create our carrier bags. It’s even better we’re switching to paper bags later this year too. Even the hand sanitiser bottles we have at each station are washed and refilled so we aren’t getting just one use out of them.

If you’re looking for a few simple ways to reduce your carbon footprint, keep reading!

Go Natural

Earlier this year I tried that Wild deodorant everyone on Instagram was raving about. After a month or so of using it, my armpits started to itch SO much and they became really red. At work, I’d have to subtly do a shoulder shuffle to get to an itch because it’s not very attractive to anyone seeing someone sticking their arm up and really scratching there, ha! However, I did think the Wild case and refills were pretty decent for their fee of £25. The case is metal making it easy for you to slide in your favourite scents. Tt seems this brand isn’t for me so I’ll keep looking. There is cheaper alternatives for people on a budget too, like the Sure Maximum Protection stick. Make sure to look out for biodegradable packing too.

I am giving the rest of my refills to Alice as she does use them. I have been very conscious about my make up too by grabbing some products not tested on animals. Make sure to check your local Boots and John Lewis too as they are hosting their own recycling scheme. John Lewis offer £5 of your next beauty purchase and Boots add points onto your advantage card. I must pop into Boots every lunch break and always forget to take my empties. I’ll have to pop them in my bag so I don’t forget anymore.

Ditch the Plastic

I must be the only person in the world who has tons of Chilly’s bottles but hardly uses them. I have a black sparkly one which is really good for Christmas shifts, because what’s life without a bit of sparkle? A few people are baffled as to how you wash these types of reusable bottles, I found some bottle scrubbies in Urban Outfitters and they work like a dream. You fill your bottle will hot water, soap, pop a scrubbie in and shake your bottle for a couple of minutes, voilà! Chilly’s have actually brought out some travel mugs and food containers too, I haven’t tried them out but I have the Thermos version and it should work just as well.

Reusing your bottles and cups isn’t the only way to ditch plastic, most products now offer a packaging free or biodegradable packaging version including cards, packs of pens even soaps. My favourite naked soap at the moment is the Snow Fairy one I blagged at Christmas from Lush over the road from where I work, it’s lasted since December and there’s still plenty of it left. I know a few naked products can be a bit pricey but you are making a big change for the long haul. Little changes will make such a big difference to you personally and to the world too.

You’re (NOT) Toxic

Now I love a good plug to my friends businesses but you really need to ditch brands like Yankee Candle. They have so many toxic ingredients in their products, it’s becoming a bit too dangerous for my liking. Hence why I only buy my candles and wax melts from Thora & Nell. There’s a wide range of scents and ranges, all affordable and they last a while too. Treat yourself. This isn’t an ad or affiliate etc, just a gal supporting her friend’s small business. Paraffin free and made with 100% essential oils, you really won’t regret switching your toasted marshmallow scent for a cosy wax melt. Make sure to check out Alice’s TikTok for Thora & Nell too for the most aesthetically pleasing videos everrrrr.

Some make up products can be toxic too, such as lip balms and eye shadows. Use Carmex or Burt Bees for an alternative, they use natural ingredients including beeswax. I have noticed thought they make my lips a bit plumper than usual. You’re basically getting your lips done for a fraction of the price, ha! Speaking of getting a little makeover, change up your shampoo and conditioner pairing if you can, they sometimes contain toxic ingredients which could be actually damaging your hair. Again, Lush has some good alternatives to your bog standard supermarket find with I believe a new recycling scheme so you can earn up to 50p per empty you take back to the shop. Don’t forget, they use paper bags which are even better than biodegradable ones!

Niamh x



  1. Thanks for sharing these great swaps! Along with trying to eliminate plastic, I am also trying to cut out all the toxic products. Your suggestions are super helpful!

    • Niamh Darby
      14/05/2021 / 22:38

      Ah brilliant! Thank you so much for reading! X

  2. 15/05/2021 / 11:44

    Very practical and valuable, definitey we should
    take care for plastic. I also recently opened my Etsy
    shop. Thanks for sharing..

  3. 15/05/2021 / 14:43

    I’m all for doing our part to have a better and healthier Earth. This was a good article. So far I do use reusable shopping bags and I use vegan skin products not tested on animals. I will continue to check out some other products. Thank you.

  4. 15/05/2021 / 14:57

    Thanks for sharing these tips for making simple sustainable swaps! I’m trying to buy and use less plastic in my everyday life now and I like that I’m managing to do that! x

    Lucy |

  5. 15/05/2021 / 19:39

    really helpful ideas, i’ve been trying to make some more eco friendly switches lately and these are definitely helpful suggestions.

  6. 16/05/2021 / 13:46

    Some great tips here! I love Wild deodorant and have been doing my bit to try and make sustainable swaps in my everyday life xx

  7. 16/05/2021 / 14:34

    These were great tips! We’re already trying to swap some stuff out, and it’s actually quite enjoyable to research the right products x

  8. 18/05/2021 / 16:51

    Wonderful tips on here! I had no idea about Yankee Candles, will definitely look for alternatives instead now. I’ve also been checking the packaging of products more often to make sure they’re recyclable x

  9. 19/05/2021 / 12:28

    Excellent ideas here 🙂
    I stopped buying hair elastics a couple of years ago. I now have a handful of scrunchies (from small businesses) and some wooden hair sticks to keep my hair back.
    I think supporting small businesses is an excellent way to be more eco friendly – I know that most I use have recycled packaging and offer more eco-friendly options like natural beeswax candles instead of soy wax.
    Cora |

  10. 19/05/2021 / 19:46

    I LOVE the Wild deodorant, I’ve recently switched to it to try and live more sustainably. It’s something I think a lot of us are trying to do more of and in honesty, it’s enjoyable researching into new things and how we can make small changes to make a big difference! Great post!

    Mary-Ann x

  11. 20/05/2021 / 22:37

    It’s a shame that yankee candle and other popular candle brands are so toxic. But, it’s also nice in a way because it encourages me to try out new candles from small businesses. I’ve never heard of Thora & Nell, but as soon as you mentioned it, I went to their website. They have so many cute things, and I’ve already started adding to my cart! Can’t wait to test them all out!

    • Niamh Darby
      21/05/2021 / 20:31

      Ah brilliant! It’s run by one of my best friends – thank you for supporting her! x

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