Reuse Until You Can't Reuse Any More

Reuse Until You Can't Reuse Any More

We're far too comfortable with throwing out anything we can't find value in. As much as possible, choose to reuse.


Lately, I've realized that there are only so many potential afterlives for any given item. As much as I can reuse a cute little box or bag, I end up with a million of them that are never quite necessary. Then what? I get pretty creative about how to gift, alter, or find a new purpose for those things that I don't want to just throw away. Still, there are far too many "reusables" that don't ever get reused.

Of course, I will always opt for reusable packaging over single-use plastics, as a means of supporting businesses that prioritize sustainability and to eliminate my plastic use as much as possible. However, unless these items are easily recyclable, figuring out a second life for them can seem like more work than it's worth.

When you already have cabinets full of Tupperware and glass jars, additional reusable items begin to take up too much space. And you might be tempted to buy that Hydroflask or cute ceramic coffee mug, but if you already have something that works for that purpose, it's not a necessity...which leads us to the three R's.

You can add any number of terms to the grouping (refuse, repair, repurpose, etc.), but the first step is always reduced. In our capitalistic society, we've found it more profitable to produce more rather than less. Clearly, we're focused on convenience, but we've sacrificed sustainability. So, it's time to transform our linear economy into a circular one.

I fully encourage the purchasing of items in reusable containers and packaging, because that is always a better option than plastic. Recently, my mom bought some black bean tamales that come in a cute fabric bag. It's a cool alternative to a cardboard box, but as my mom said, what do you do with the bag after that?

Many organizations, such as TerraCycle, provide options for recycling of products of all kinds. As wonderful as they are, it isn't always easy or accessible for people to take advantage of their services. Other companies, such as Schmidt's, offer a discount if you use up their product and send them back the packaging to be sanitized and refilled. All of this is a step in the right direction; we want to continue to see progress like this!

Still, we have a ways to go when it comes to the cycle of production in big business practices. Until we see a massive shift in the way our products are manufactured, we are failing to reach a circular economy to reduce our reliance on single-use plastics. It's important to reach the level of reuse, but we must first strive to reduce! Consider sustainable shopping in your day-to-day life. Voting with our wallets will be the mass movement that has the power to change the cycle of production in America.

Don't give into the idea that you have to buy new trendy zero-waste items; just use up what you have! Then, opt for the most sustainable products available to you, and reuse as many things as is possible.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Politics and Activism

4 Ways The Plan To Deport International Students Is Dumb, According To An Exchange Student

The whole policy isn't very stay-in-place, if you ask me.

Wikimedia Commons

On Monday, July 6, new federal guidelines were announced that do not allow international students to remain in the U.S. unless they are taking classes in person. Which, if you ask me, is stupid.

Keep Reading... Show less

Naya Rivera Is Missing, And She Deserves SO Much More Than Being Labeled 'Big Sean's' Ex'

We are all sending prayers to Naya Rivera hoping she finds them so we can find her.

I woke up this morning looking to find Naya Rivera's name trending No. 1 on Twitter. I was reading all of everyone's prayers wishing to find her so she can be reunited with her baby boy who is only 4 years old.

Naya's son's name is Lord and the entire collective is hoping the Lord is with him right now. I'm a firm believer in the Fear of God, I hope all of Naya's love is protecting Lord right now.

Keep Reading... Show less

With the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic still surging in the United States, where we are averaging 50,000 cases daily, wearing a face mask has become even more important. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, has stressed the importance of wearing a mask and is pleading Americans to take notice of the "disturbing" rise in cases. It would be common sense to listen to him, considering we are dealing with a virus that has a mortality rate higher than what we have seen with other viruses.

Keep Reading... Show less

It's your fairy sex godmother back at it again and here to tell you that masturbating is an essential need, just like toilet paper.

It comes with so many benefits, besides cumming. According to the New York City Health Department, "you are your safest sex partner" during a pandemic, so why not use the best toys to get the job done? Shopping for the best fit can be tricky because there are a few factors to consider — whether it's the price point, experience, sound, and more.

Keep Reading... Show less

These 3 Smoothies Totally Cleared My Acne-Prone And Scarred Skin

How I drank my way to flawless skin.

With this summer being the first of its kind for most people to be in the midst of a global pandemic, almost everyone is beginning to have an overall focus on improving their health.

Keep Reading... Show less

Everyone remembers the first time they went to one of the Disney parks. Spinning in teacups and having Goofy wrap his arms around my 8-year-old self were some of my fondest childhood memories, and I'm surely not alone in that.

Keep Reading... Show less

These Superfood Beauty Products Show Kale And Matcha Work For SO Much More Than We Thought

Just another summer's day with a cold glass of kombucha on my face.

I've been vegan for about six years now, so a love for fresh vegetables and superfoods has now become a core part of my being. Don't get me wrong. I love my indulgent, creamy pastas and truffle fries more than anyone. But I keep most of my focus on eating clean and healthy so I can indulge guilt-free.

But I'd say about a large part of my diet has always, unknowingly, included superfoods. Being Indian, lentils, beetroot, garlic, ginger, and whole grains have been core essentials on the family dinner table since I could digest solid foods.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments