Why reusables are the future

Let’s be honest, single use items are so last year; reusables are in. I’m talking rose gold metal straws, fancy coffee mugs, patterned makeup wipes, and the most stylish reusable sandwich bags that make plastic wrap so embarrassed it always runs away. Although reusables may be ‘on trend’, they’re a trend that’s here to stay. With the growing awareness and knowledge around our current climate crisis, we’re realising that to ensure our continued existence on earth, we must do away with single use items and focus on using resources wisely: again and again and again.

Reusable versus Single use

What’s so wrong with single use? Well, the concept of extracting precious and finite resources from earth in order to use a product just once or twice, goes against better judgement.

Consider a disposable coffee cup made from paper and plastic. Oil is drilled, trees are cut down, the cup is transported (emitting carbon emissions) to and from manufacturing plants, and it ends up at a coffee shop. The consumer then buys their coffee, uses the cup for approximately 5 minutes, then throws it into the rubbish bin. Can you see the problem here? Especially when there are billions of people practising this same activity, the earth takes a big hit. We cannot keep doing this forever.

Reusable versus Compostable

When a single use plastic is replaced with a compostable alternative, it’s a reason to celebrate! A compostable item is capable of breaking down into natural matter without leaving toxic ingredients in the earth. This is the opposite of plastic, which can break up but never break down. However, even though compostable is a brilliant alternative, each compostable item still took energy and resources to create and requires a particular environment to actually break down.

Picture a disposable coffee cup made from corn starch PLA, plant based plastic. Corn was harvested, the cup is transported (emitting carbon emissions) to and from manufacturing plants, and it ends up at a coffee shop. The consumer then buys their coffee, uses the cup for approximately 5 minutes, then throws it in the bin.

The big problem here is that the cup needs a certain environment to break down. This includes the right levels of oxygen, nitrogen, heat, and moisture. If the compostable coffee cup goes into landfill (an airtight hole in the ground) the cup will continue to exist for hundreds of years. Ideally, the cup would end up in a commercial composting facility, as most coffee cups cannot break down in home compost environments (they don’t get hot enough). But this doesn’t usually happen; unfortunately, the world hasn’t caught up yet. Most compostable food packaging ends up in landfill.

With all this in mind, reusables definitely come out on top. Depending on the product, reusables generally save the owner a lot of money too and can last for decades.

Here are our top recommendations when it comes to helpful reusables and reducing your waste:

Ditch plastic bottles and choose to refill before you leave the house. This beautiful bottle is a standout with a hand wrapped print of a Cass Urquhart original artwork and, they keep your hot drinks hot and your cold drinks cold!


or 4 interest free payments of $2.25 with Afterpay

Say goodbye to those pesky little plastic veggie bags at the supermarket, and hello to calico mesh bags that can be used over and over again.

Huia's Picks



or 4 interest free payments from $12.25 with Afterpay

Replacing tampons and pads with a menstrual cup will save you and the planet.  The Hello Cup is made to last several years, so you can enjoy a waste free period, hundreds of dollars saved, and an easier experience while on your period. Read more about how menstrual cups work and why we think they’re great here.


or 4 interest free payments of $2.00 with Afterpay

Plastic bags are banned in New Zealand, so carry your shopping or other bits and bobs in here. Made from sustainably produced organic cotton, this bag will also be the perfect match for your handbag overflow.


or 4 interest free payments of $7.50 with Afterpay

Clingfilm is a thing of the past! Avoid throwing any waste in the bin, while reducing food waste too. Wrap your home baking, cover a bowl of salad, protect your dinner leftovers, or fold up a toastie in style.

Paper towels demand trees be cut down, so it simply makes sense for these to be reusable. Swap out your paper towels with absorbent cotton flannelette ‘unpaper’ towels.


or 4 interest free payments of $5.50 with Afterpay

CaliWood’s rose gold straws put plastic straws to shame. Not only do they save the turtles, but they’re a great accessory for dressing up cocktails and impressing party guests.




or 4 interest free payments of $4.88 with Afterpay

If you remove your makeup every day, you can end up wasting hundreds of single-use pads every year! We promise these reusable makeup remover pads will work just as well, if not, better.

Caliwoods Eco



or 4 interest free payments of $8.25 with Afterpay

This is the ideal match for your smoothies, coffees, soups, or even simply water. These tumblers also keep your hot drinks hot and your cold drinks cold!


or 4 interest free payments of $9.74 with Afterpay

Being eco-friendly often includes sacrifices, but not when it comes to shaving! This zero waste safety razor has a double edged blade, butterfly opening for easy blade changing, and could last you a lifetime. Simply replace the blades as they blunt, and recycle at your local recycling facility or metal scrap dealer


So, it’s pretty clear: reusables are in, and disposables are out. We know it’s difficult to remember your reusables and change your habits, so we’ve come up with a few ideas to help you remember here.

Your life will be full of reusables and free of waste if you tackle change step by step.

Start small, but start somewhere!


One re-usuable safety razor in rose gold, a replacement razor blade and an unpaper towel.

To enter, just comment below and let us know your favourite reusable!

Ends at midnight on 28th October 2019. Competition is open to AU & NZ residents.

128 thoughts on “Why reusables are the future

  1. Rose Goold says:

    The one I’m most interested in is the safety razor! It’s quite retro, which is cool and really reinforces the concept that even a small disposable item has a huge impact!!

  2. Mimi says:

    I love my Chunky bottle!! It keeps my teas hot, and cold water ice-cold for hours! I’m eyeing on the steel straws next!

  3. Emma says:

    My reusable pads, I Am Eva underwear and menstrual cup ! Life changers. Took a little to get used to it all but now I wouldn’t go back, I am so much more in-tune with my body now too 🙂

    • Talitha Moore says:

      I love my reusable coffee cup, I even just use it at home, its such a nice cup. Love that people are really jumping on the reusable band wagon!

  4. Rachael says:

    My favourite reusable product is my honey drinks bottle 😊 but i have so many reusable products now for the kitchen that a reusable shaver would be perfect to try!

  5. Alejandra Tynan says:

    My favourite is a reusable takeaway cup by Oka Pottery. Every piece is unique and I absolutely love mine, and so do the baristas when they see it! 🙂

  6. Emma Reynolds says:

    My favourite reusable is the beeswax sandwich wraps I use in the kids lunches. I haven’t bought gladwrap in 2 years now!

  7. Anna Sinaeve says:

    Hmm I can’t choose my favourite reusable cause they are all awesome so I will go with my latest one: period underwear. It forms a great combo with the Hello. Cup. Love it!! Next on my list is a razor :).

  8. Beckie Alexander says:

    I have a gorgeous stainless steel drink flask that I take to the gym and out and about on hot days. I also love my beautiful bamboo keep cup for my daily coffee.

  9. Melissa says:

    Cloth nappies and wipes for sure! Though hard to decide my fav item as I couldn’t live without my stainless steel drink bottle either!!

  10. Melissa Walker says:

    I love my reusable bin bags that I made myself out of leftover material so they get washed every time instead of putting a plastic bag inside a bigger plastic bag just to go to landfill:))

  11. Sheldyn hart says:

    The stainless steel razor would be a great replacement for my plastic one! My favourite reusable right now is my new mesh produce bags 🙂 so easy to use.

  12. Justine Young says:

    The metal drink I have owned for years. I use it daily, ie shopping, at the movies and during work. Easy to clean and keeps water cool. Bonus.

  13. Iris Goodmanson says:

    Favourite reusables are the families stainless steel water bottles and the cloth vegetable bags. Straight from shopping and into fridge.

  14. Kirsty says:

    Reusable nappies! Initially felt daunting but once I got my head around washing and caring for them it has become a passion (and a bit of an addiction!). The washing process is oddly satisfying along the knowledge of how much waste can be reduced if every baby in NZ just by used 1 reusable nappy a day (1million nappies a week out of landfill!).

  15. Kate Leveridge says:

    My favourite reusable is tailor make up cloth with tailor skin products so I never have to use disposable make up wipes again. We also use 100% compostable poo bags for our puppy, from a nz company too! Love supporting local and love giving back to Mother Nature when ever I can

  16. Miriam says:

    I’ve been using glass jars for my lunch & snacks at work, the boys have metal water bottles & we’ve found some silicon covers to put over food in the microwave to save the mess & using paper towels. Thanks heaps.

  17. Holly says:

    I’d have to say my favourite reusable is my beautiful pottery cup for coffee – I drink A LOT of coffee and making the switch made me realise how many takeaway cups I was going through. I think the switch has saved 50+ cups by now

  18. Holly Ann says:

    It would have to be my wee boys Cloth Nappies, I have saved alot of money since I’ve started using them, they are so easy to use, easy to wash, I just love them!

  19. Carla says:

    My stainless steel water bottle now goes everywhere with me. Also coverted to a cup and wash pads many years ago and not having tampons around the house has been the best thing ever!

  20. Marie-Charlotte says:

    100% would choose my menstrual cup.
    On top of saving me tons of money, so much of my rubbish that don’t go in the landfill is so impressive.
    I hated pads and tampons, this was a complete game-changer.
    Over 5 years now and won’t swap back for anything in the world

  21. Laura says:

    Beeswax wraps are an amazing alternative for glad wrap and of course taking produce and shopping bags to the supermarket. I am now trying to update all my beauty care to waste free, so far I have my deodorant and conditioner in bars which are working awesome.

  22. Kylie MacDonald says:

    Bees wax wraps. My cheese now lasts SO MUCH LONGER without getting dry/mouldy. So good 👍

  23. Tam says:

    My menstrual cup! So much better than tampons and great in the water and no toxic shock syndrome! Ideallll

  24. Jennifer McKinlay says:

    I love reusable straws! So easy to take with you too and hand out to other people when they forget theirs. Such a simple way to reduce single use plastic.

  25. Sanet says:

    My absolute favourite is reusable nappies! #momlife but I am a massive fan of reusable eye make up remover pads too! . Next goal is unpaper towel!

  26. Sophie says:

    Reusable drink bottle and steri-pen especially while travelling in countries that don’t have safe drinking water is the thing I use most. I’ve only recently started to learn about all of the other ways I can live more sustainably and protect the earth, so am in the process of using up the things I already own first before replacing them with more sustainable products.

  27. caroline johandiputri says:

    my fave reusable atm is the Hello menstrual cup and hannah pad panty liners and also keep cup for my tee. hoping to win this as i shaved alot and the plastic one get rusty easily and unhygienic.

  28. Jessie Newton says:

    My glass coffee cup. I drink copious amounts of tea and coffee and I’ve saved thousands of plastic/ paper cups since I bought this. It’s also much nicer to drink from.

  29. Rori Baird says:

    My favourite reusable item is my hello cup! It has saved me so much time and money each month!! I can never go back

  30. Laura Bradfield says:

    Favourite reusables-cloth nappies and cloth baby wipes…not only saving on rubbish but saving money and really so easy!

  31. Tamara says:

    Currently have the reusable makeup remover pads and am loving it! Feels so much better that they are not single use❤️

  32. Maree says:

    So hard to pick but I think the best reusable items at home right now are our cloth nappies (by The Baby Tree) they have velcro, so easy peasy to put on/take off and so easy to clean! And of course my sea shepherds keep cup for coffee, take that thing EVERYWHERE… because coffee is life.
    I’ve been wanting to try one of these stainless steel razors for ages! Fingers crossed for the win.

  33. Pam says:

    My favourites would be stainless steel water bottle that gets used every day and kids go green lunchboxes are great- no wrapping required as well as reusable snack bags. So many I am going to purchase menstrual cup and one of these razors.

  34. Holly says:

    Would have to say my I Am Eva period underwear, apart from being good for your period, they are great for the last trimester of pregnancy & great postpartum also. Also my Organic Moon Cup I bought a while back is the best thing since sliced bread, no more tampons!

  35. Fleur says:

    My favourite reusable is my homemade shopping bag for the supermarket. Made from a curtain sample. Super strong and holds heaps.

  36. Erin Lynch says:

    Containers for everything, my drink bottle, using plates to cover leftovers in the fridge instead of glad wrap, reusing or recycling anything possible, reusing countdown grocery bags as present bags

  37. Jade Cheung says:

    Love beeswax wraps – no need to use plastic wraps to transport my sandwiches and snacks 😊

  38. Alice Matthews says:

    My favourite product would have to be the rose gold razor.. this brings back nostalgia for me watching my pop and my dad shave in the mornings with these.
    Thanks so much for the opportunity 🙏

  39. Emma says:

    My favourite reseables are definitely my Hello Cup and my beeswax wraps! I’ve saved so much money by switching to these products and honestly the Hello Cup just makes life so much easier. Paired with cloth pads, and you’re onto a winner! Next step is the stainless Steel razor.

  40. Claire says:

    Beeswax Reusable Wraps have to be the most used and useful option, safe, reliable and very versatile.

  41. Darni struijck says:

    Biggest reusable favourite is the menstrual cup. No longer do you have to be an anxious about buying menstrual products from the supermarket, it feels better using a product that saves the environment, it gives greater confidence knowing it is safer for the body and can contain more and can hardly feel like when you carry out life. The best thing!

  42. Sarah Ellwood says:

    The period underwear! It has not only been amazing as a reusable, but given me confidence to do every day things without worrying about embarrassing leaks or running out of tampons..

  43. Sarah S says:

    I love all the reusable changes I have made: drink bottles, shopping bags, produce bags, food containers, menstrual cup and pads etc. My favourites are probably the ones that have lasted the longest so far – it’s nice when something is 8, 9, 10 years old, and you can think what a difference it has made in that time.

  44. Anna F says:

    My favourite is my trinity of drink bottle, totes and keep cup that live in my backpack. My house is filled with other reusable swaps (and always on the look out for more), but those three get the biggest workout

    • Cassie Khan says:

      My reusable beeswax wraps are the envy of everyone I work with, especially with all the great patterns you get.

    • Sharon says:

      My favs are the reusable straws, stainless steel drink bottles and cloths. Which I use all 3 on a daily basis.

  45. Liana says:

    Definitely my keep cup! So much coffee to be drunk! If I don’t have it on me while I’m out and about it forces me to sit down for ten minutes and drink in house 👍🏻

  46. Lisa L says:

    I love my reusable stainless straws and my jar collection! Ethique facial bar with facial sponge as I prefer to wash my face than use cleansers

    • Kerry Santillo says:

      The hot and cold tumblers are awesome!!! Everyone in the family uses them in summer and winter. Eco friendly, the best.

  47. Bridget says:

    So hard to choose…. I guess my favourite reusable would be my stainless steel bottle as I use this daily and throughout the whole day.

  48. Bella says:

    I was so scared to try a period cup but they’re amazing!! So nice not having to worry about whether you have any tampons left & they are so easy to use

  49. Zenovia Pappapetros says:

    Expanding the favourites to be my every day joys – coffee cups, water bottles, produce bags etc

  50. Mel says:

    I’ve been making the gradual leap to reusable for about 3 years now. Rather than throw out all of my original stuff I’ve been replacing them when they wear out or break (tooth brush, plastic lunch box etc) . I’m choosing items that I hope will last for many years and which are more planet friendly. I don’t know which is my favourite but certainly my glass jars, shopping bags and bamboo dish brush are amongst my favourites. Using planet friendly cleaning g products has been a big boost and I’ve also noticed that my skin has improved. Big steps but so far it has been worth it.

  51. Amy says:

    At the moment it’s my period panties. Paper based products always set off my eczema, which in such a sensitive place was awful. The cloth period panties don’t, and they are so comfy! I made the change for the environment, I didn’t expect it to be so good for me too.

  52. Miriam Bandara says:

    Definitely cloth nappies, there are so many great options available! Plus I enjoy washing them!

  53. Theresa Boon says:

    .y favourite reusable are the handkerchiefs made out of old retro flannelette sheets. Didn’t have to spend a cent and they look funky while the sheet gets a second life.

  54. Sarah says:

    My favourite reusables are my bees wax wraps, they get used all the time for covering leftovers. They also look great when taking food to a potluck dinner.

  55. Linda says:

    So many Reusable favourites … my glass keep cup which I use every day at least once – sometimes more, my wax wraps which keep food so fresh and my reusable shopping bags which I use for so much more than groceries!

  56. Michele Falconer says:

    My most fav product change is the calico woods tumbler and her rose gold reusable straws!! Also vege bags, beeswax wraps (the smell alone is so yummy), my son uses a plant box (stainless steel) for his school lunches which I love packing. Going to try toothbrush tabs soon too.

    • Emily says:

      My menstrual cup has been a life changer. I’ve used one for about 8 years now, so much easier and so much less waste

      • Chloe Burgess says:

        definetly the menstrual cup, what a life changer! followed closely by our reusable coffee cups and beeswax wraps

  57. Natasha says:

    Favourite reusable definitely has to be beeswax wraps🐝 with reusable Cotten makeup remover pads a close second 💋

    • Tine Reymen says:

      I’d say my favourite reusable swap so far would be my period products (combo of cup and reusable pad and liners), and using a facecloth instead of facial wipes!

    • Paula Stephenson says:

      My favourite would have to be my Hello menstrual cup; such a game changer. I would like to see reusable menstural products become the norm, and I would love to see government initiatives in making these accessible for all women.

    • Alana Ashford says:

      I love to Mix Things Up in my Stainless Steel Drink Bottles that will last forever and because I can’t decide if I want it Hot or Cold!

  58. Sharon O'Callaghan says:

    Hot and cold tumblers – we use them every day, starting with the cuppa on the way to work

  59. Aimee says:

    Massive game changer with reusable s was getting into cloth nappies when my son was born. Although it takes work it’s big motivator knowing I’m preventing all those disposables going to landfill.

  60. Stacey Mahoney says:

    I love my reusable produce bags!!!! My kids are huge raw vege fiends, so using reusable produce bags saves a heap of turtles they reckon 😊

    • Emma Gribben says:

      I upcycle and re-use my coconut yoghurt jars! Small ones for herbs and spices and larger ones for nuts, seeds, rice etc. Next to that I’d rate my beeswax wraps!

    • Eve Duggan says:

      My favourite reusable is my glass drink bottle! I take it everywhere. Even had it when I was in hospital recently so I didn’t have to use a straw 🏥

    • Annette Wilson says:

      These are awesome! So pleased that we are going back to the old way, no plastic. I have the wax wraps and she vege bags..👌

    • Tania Retter says:

      At the moment my favourite reusable able is my metal insulated drink bottle. I also liked my reusable nappies I used with my son, and will definitely use them again with my next one.

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