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This Tiny Handbag Accessory Will Dramatically Cut Your Plastic Use

For a little while now, the planet has been at war with plastic straws. Huge restaurant chains, like Wagamama and Starbucks, have been making the switch to paper straws in a bid to keep less plastic out of the oceans.

Many people are unhappy with the switch, with many people urging McDonald's to keep using plastic straws as paper "ruins the taste".

All of this came after a horrific, heartbreaking video of a turtle with a straw stuck inside its nose went viral. Many people are on board with the change and desperate to reduce their own plastic consumption, but many of us are still concerned with the taste and mushiness of paper straws.

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Tiffany & Co
Tiffany & Co

So what do you do when you want to reduce your plastic straw use (which is reportedly 4.7 billion per year in England alone, with DEFRA reporting that it is estimated that there are over 150 million tonnes of plastic in the world's oceans and every year) but you still want to enjoy your drink and look good while you do it?

Straws keep your lipstick intact and your drinks firmly in their cup rather than all over your outfit, but if you're not so keen on paper ones while you help save the planet, there are tons of alternatives.

Copper straws - Kitchen Gift Co
Copper straws - Kitchen Gift Co

Many people are switching to carrying their own reusable straws around to pull out of your bag in a pinch. Etsy has over 4,000 options available, many of which even come with their own carry case and cleaning brushes to make it even easier.

Etsy's trend expert Dayna Isom Johnson told Refinery29 that sales have increased 198 per cent in the last year, saying: "people are becoming more and more aware and conscious and opting for those other options. And when you look into it, it takes 200 years for one plastic straw to break down, so you can make quite an impact."

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Etsy
Etsy

Last year, Tiffany & Co. even released a $250 gold vermeil straw, cementing reusable straws as a fashion accessory. Since then, many others have come out: with Goop, Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, and more all releasing reusable straws.

No longer relegated to hippie, eco-friendly stores, there are some properly cute ones out there. Like these copper ones for just £7.95 from Kitchen Gift Co. Or if you're more into pink, these glass ones from eBay. Or, for something closer to plastic for the feel, try these from Etsy.

Saving the planet won't be easy, but every little step you make will make a small bit of difference. Plus, when those changes are things like investing in cute straws and reusable bags, how can you go wrong?

Featured Image Credit: Unsplash

Topics: Life

Marianne Eloise

Marianne writes about TV, film and internet culture for Nylon, VICE, The Guardian, Vulture, Time Out and more. She was previously a staff writer at Dazed.

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