What do plastic sandwich bags, toothpaste tubes and disposable razors have in common?
They are single-use items that are made of materials that never degrade. Used once, rarely recycled, most are around forever as trash.
There is so much garbage in the world.
But, what if it didn't have to be that way? One local business in Ballard is working toward a less-trash-filled future, one small step at a time.
“Eco Collective is a zero waste store in Seattle, we also have an online store as well," said Marimar White-Espin. "We sell lifestyle goods that help you live a more 'zero waste' lifestyle, which is simplifying your life by reducing your waste all of our products can be composted, recycled or reused."
Marimar is a co-owner of Eco Collective, along with Summer Hanson and the company's founder Genevieve Livingston. The shop is filled with long-lasting, ecologically sourced, recyclable and/or compostable items designed to replace chintzy, wasteful, often plastic, products and packaging. Some items at Eco Collective can be purchased in bulk, utilizing reusable containers like glass jars.
“We can fill jars with personal care goods, cleaning goods, things like vegan gummies and hair care products for all hair types it’s like this closed loop where nothing goes to waste," said Marimar. “These jars are available for a $2 deposit. And when you’re done you can wash them, return them and we sanitize them.”
Eco Collective stocks a wide variety of items and products, available for pickup at their Ballard store or online ordering and home delivery. Bamboo toothbrushes, stainless steel reusable razors, natural skin care products and dishwasher safe reusable sandwich style food storage bags are just a few of the items we spotted lining Eco Collective's shelves.
“The idea of this store was from our founder Genevieve Livingston she was trying to reduce her waste she decided she wanted to make things easier and founded Eco Collective. She started at a farmers’ market and our community really wanted something like this so, we’ve kept growing and here we are.”
Marimar says the first step toward living a more "zero waste" lifestyle is easy.
Open your trash can and look inside.
"Just take an audit of your trash can and there you’ll find a lot your trash comes from packaging...or from your lattes. And you can make incremental changes that at the end of that day make a big difference,” Marimar said.
To learn more about Eco Collective and zero waste living click here.