Whether it’s the freshness of being outdoors all weekend, sleeping in tents, or listening to music with friends, festivals really do bring out the best of the British summertime – even if you do have to pack emergency wellies!
A lot of festival organisers are making huge efforts to reduce their waste these days as keeping hordes of festival-goers fed and hydrated, there’s naturally a lot of litter produced. While the type of disposable cutlery and food trays are carefully monitored at some sites, others are not always so vigilant.
As part of a radical new collaborative campaign led by the Association of Independent Festivals (AIF) and Raw Foundation, over 60 independent festivals (including Shambala and Bestival) have pledged to ban single-use plastics by 2021.
As well as festival organisers tackling the waste generated by big events, we too can help by not adding to the problem. Here are our top tips to help you keep your festival experience plastic-free:
As unpredictable as the British weather is, you can’t be too careful. With a scorching summer predicted, you’re going to want to do everything you can to keep your skin protected and save yourself from the embarrassment of a lobster pink tan. Shade is a completely natural sunscreen made from coconut oil, beeswax, zinc oxide and shea butter. It’s safe for all skin types, tested to EU standards and meets all UVA and UVB criteria. Incredibly eco-friendly, it contains no coral-bleaching ingredients and comes in a tin!
Between hot summer weather and drinking alcohol, it's so important to stay hydrated so you don’t run the risk of fatigue or fainting. Festivals are about having fun and keeping a water bottle on you makes light work of staying topped up with water and dancing all day. Most festivals offer free water refilling stations, meaning not only is your reusable water bottle going to be good for the environment, but you’re also going to save money by not buying your water from vendors. With so many bottles to choose from these days, there are some eye catching designs and innovations to keep you trend-setting.
Such an brilliant easy swap to make. There are so many amazing food options at festivals from your traditional hog roast, through to Indonesian street noodles and giant Mexican burritos. However, not all foods can be eaten with your fingers and to prevent having to use disposable plastic cutlery, you could simply take out your own personal reusables - ta dah! Bambu make a brilliant little travel pack of a bamboo knife, fork and spoon, neatly held together by a small cork sleeve. Or go naked and get a set without the cover. Having this sturdy set in your handbag or tucked into your pocket will arm you against flimsy single-use disposables.
Body glitter is BIG at the moment but if you’re not careful, you could find yourself pouring a load of microplastic directly onto your body. The problem here is that these tiny plastic pieces fall from your body and instantly pollute the local environment, causing damage to wildlife and waterways. Thankfully, there are eco-glitter producers around to save the day, so your sparkly fun-filled days may long continue. Make sure you are using a trusted brand such as Eco Stardust, made from plant cellulose and therefore fully biodegradable, or Eco Glitter Fun (same credentials).
A great place to keep all of the above and other daytime essentials, or to help you carry home that festival programme and T-shirt. A tote or cloth bag is endlessly useful and can be rolled up and stuffed into another bag or your pocket.
For the ultimate plastic-free Festival Kits have a look at our bundles of planet-saving joy. Not just for festivals, they make great travel kits for any time you are away from home. They come in a versatile organic cotton net bag so you can take your laundry home in it, use it as a produce bag afterwards and as a kit bag next time you head off exploring 🌍.