News Article

Small zero-waste changes to make your daily routine more sustainable

Picture of jars with food in them.

It’s 2019, and whether we’re actively ditching plastic bottles or paying a 20p levvy for a disposable coffee cup, we are all trying to do our bit for the environment! With that in mind, KCLSU is opening its very own student union zero-waste shop, Nought, the first of its kind in London. Nought will be stocking all of your favourite sustainable and plastic-free everyday essentials, and all of our proceeds going back into efforts to improve our sustainability. So, how can you make a positive change for the environment?


1. How it works

As all of the products at Nought are plastic free, you will need to bring your own reusable bags, jars and containers to do your shopping. Some products will come with paper or recyclable packaging, such as the variety of toiletry and household items, but bulk stock like nuts, rice and pasta will need to be placed inside a container to be taken to the till – and to your home! Upcycle your empty jam and peanut butter jars and weight them on our handy scales, fill them up with whatever bulk stock you need and head on to the till where the lovely shop staff will help you weigh and pay for your items. And if you don’t have any empty jars – don’t worry, you can grab one or two from the shop too!

2. Make food shopping sustainable

One of the biggest ways in which you can reduce your daily waste is changing the way you do your weekly food shop. Whereas in general supermarkets most necessary items will be wrapped around single-use and non-recyclable plastics, places like Nought provide a plastic-free and sustainable way for you to continue buying and enjoying your favourite meals and snacks. If you are a student at Guy’s campus or live in one of the nearby halls, Nought will be especially handy in providing your essentials in a more efficient and less wasteful way. So whether you’re looking to shop for a whole meal or for some lecture snacks, pop in and have a look at the variety of items you can shop for.

3. Beauty doesn’t need to hurt our environment

We all have different beauty and skincare routines, and one product definitely does not work for every single person. Though sometimes it may be difficult to swap your favourite moisturiser or make-up item for a sustainable option, there are alternatives which can make your self-care routines more eco-friendly. Swapping single-use cotton pads for reusable make-up pads, plastic toothbrushes for bamboo toothbrushes and even your sanitary products for a reusable option or a menstrual cup, there are many changes you can make to your tools which allow you to be more sustainable and continue using your favourite products guilt-free – it’s the best of both worlds!

4. Spice up your life

Spices are useful pantry items in all kitchens – but they often come in small plastic packaging which is, most of the time, discarded in a couple of weeks and builds up the amount of plastic polluting our land and oceans. But, to be sustainable doesn’t mean that your food needs to be unseasoned and tasteless – use up the spices left in your cupboards and reuse the jars and tubs to refill with a whole range of spices available in Nought. Whether you need some peppercorns for a nice batch of peppercorn sauce or some garam masala for your curry, there are lots of options for you to increase your taste buds and decrease your impact!

5. Clean your room – and the planet!

No one likes to live in a dirty room – so why are we okay with living in a dirty planet? Reuse your empty spray bottles and empty jar as refill containers for your multi-surface cleaners and washing powders, and save some money and trips to the recycling bin! Adapting products such as degradable refuse sacks into your everyday life will make you feel better about the waste you produce – and will make the planet thankful for the changes you are making!


Even if you are not planning on visiting our new shop any time soon, use resources available to you to make these changes in your everyday life – and be creative! Being zero-waste doesn’t always have to be expensive, so reuse and upcycle as many items as you can.

Bring your TOTUM card for a 20% off discount and give us a visit, or contact us to find out more:

Address: Next to the Quad, Collingwood Street, Guy’s Campus

Email: [email protected]

Telephone: 020 7848 1810