The blog formerly known as   Fake Plastic Fish

Monthly Archives: August 2011

August 23, 2011

Plastic-Free Discussion Board Restored!

Remember that discussion forum we had two years ago for posting questions and ideas about all things plastic?  Wait. You don’t remember it because you weren’t here then?  Well, you missed out on more fun than I can possibly describe in this blog post.  Sadly, I had to take it down because malicious hackers broke in and caused disruption and gambling spam.  But guess what!  I found a new Discussion Forum plugin that works well and I’ve been able to restore all the old user IDs and posts.

Here’s the link to the discussion board:

Why would you want to post on a message board rather than comment on a blog post?  Well, for one thing, you can start your own posts in the forum about anything you want. Well, anything plastic-related.  You can ask for advice about plastic-free alternatives.  You can share discoveries you’ve made.  You can post useful links, articles,… Read the rest

August 15, 2011

Reusable Plastic-Free Lunch Containers and Bags from LunchBots, Graze Organic, & Three Little Birds


[January 2014 Update: Unfortunately, both Graze Organic and Three Little Birds have gone out of business in the past year.  I will post an updated blog on reusable cloth lunch containers and bags in the near future.]

Are you still relying on plastic baggies, bags, or containers to pack lunches for school or work? Are you concerned about the chemicals that can leach out of plastics into the foods you or your kids eat? A lot of plastic food containers are touted as BPA-free. But BPA-free does not necessarily mean safe because the chemicals used in place of BPA can have the same harmful effects. And plastics like polypropylene may contain antibacterial chemicals like Triclosan, which have been found to leach.

There are many plastic-free alternatives, and this week, three companies are offering giveaways and discounts to My Plastic-free Life readers for back to school. To enter the giveaways, leave a comment at the bottom of this post letting me know… Read the rest

August 10, 2011

Natural Plastic-Free Toothpaste, Tooth Powder, Tooth Soap Ideas…


Since Tom’s of Maine switched from recyclable aluminum toothpaste tubes to plastic laminate a few months ago, I’ve been getting tons of emails asking what less plastic option to use instead. I looked at the change as a challenge to finally figure out a better toothpaste alternative. Aluminum was good (you could send the tubes back to the company to be recycled) but not perfect because of a) the plastic cap and threads, and b) the resin lining inside the tube which possibly contained BPA.

So, after much research and some harrowing moments, here are the Plastic-Free or Less Plastic tooth cleaner solutions I’ve discovered.  There are many, many more out there.  Your suggestions and input are welcome!

Make Your Own Tooth Powder

The Rucksack web site has a huge list of tooth powder vendors, as well as recipes for making your own tooth powder. Here are two ideas.

1) Baking Soda and Salt Tooth Powder. When I first started my plastic-free… Read the rest
August 4, 2011

Remove Hair with DIY Homemade Sugar Wax: Cheap, Plastic-free, and Dangerous in the Wrong Hands


The BlogHer conference is this weekend. Time for my annual eyebrow wax and pedicure. You know the saying that women dress for each other? When it comes to BlogHer, that saying couldn’t be more true. All other days of the year, I’m a pretty low maintenance gal. I mean, how often do I write about cosmetics on this blog? Almost never.  But when the BlogHer Estrogen Fest rolls around, I get all self-conscious about my neglected feet and crazy eyebrows.

Witness the crazy eyebrows for yourself.  Don’t see what I’m talking about?  That’s okay.  I see the crazy, and that’s what matters.

This time, instead of paying $15 for someone to slather paraffin wax (a petroleum product) on my face and rip it off with half my skin, I decided to save my money and inflict the pain on myself.  I found some ancient wax strips and a sugar waxing kit in the bathroom cabinet.  I can’t remember buying them, so I’d guess… Read the rest

August 1, 2011

How to Make Liquid Soap from a Solid Soap Bar, Take 2


Three years ago, trying to find a way to have liquid soap without the plastic bottle, I discovered that you can’t actually make real liquid soap from a solid soap bar. What I ended up with was a slimy green failure. And the reason is that liquid and solid soaps have different chemistries. The lye used to make solid soap is sodium hydroxide; whereas, the lye used to make liquid soap is potassium hydroxide. According to Wikipedia:

The saponification of fats with KOH [potassium hydroxide] is used to prepare the corresponding “potassium soaps”, which are softer than the more common sodium hydroxide-derived soaps. Because of their softness and greater solubility, potassium soaps require less water to liquefy, and can thus contain more cleaning agent than liquefied sodium soaps

So for the past 4 years, I’ve been doing without any kind of liquid soap. But recently, attempting to deal with some fungus problems in my garden, I’ve… Read the rest