Paper or Plastic…really?

I’m always kind of shocked when I hear eco conscious folk talking about the paper or plastic debate. Really people? Is your trunk not full of reusable bags yet? I find it hard to believe that with the typical price of a reusable bag being 99 cents and them being handed out at every service project, 5k fundraising walk/run or grand opening you attend, that you don’t have at least 5 floating around your car right now. Single use plastic bags are a global problem, on average the world goes through 4 Trillion single use plastic bags a year…yikes!


Those of you kind hearted souls that have them in your cars and say you just forget to bring them into the store with you, to that I say please try harder. You know you are going into a store to shop, so lets all try to not check Intagram all the time (guilty) and be present with the task at hand. We are more likely to remember to grab them on our way in if we aren’t distracted. There has been many times Tyler and I realize we have forgotten our bags when we go to check out, then one of us darts out to the car to grab them. If you still can not seem to remember to bring your bag, please buy one of these, a collapsible travel grocery bag. They are the best! I love mine, it lives in my purse or work bag. It packs down very small and weighs next to nothing. It is a must have for any eco lifestyle peeps. Before I bought my collapsable bag if i went stores that I usually stop by to look around, like Target or some local shops,  I never really had a bag on me.  Yes I was that person that says “Oh no I don’t need a bag” and then proceed to stuff my purse and arms full of shampoo, tank tops or any other random items I just had to buy.

Lets stop having the Paper vs. Plastic debate and commit to choosing neither, they both come from precious resources. Thankfully this is one environmental issue that has an easy fix, which is not typically the case. I know you might be saying, “but Alyson those reusable bags are made from plastic so they too are a problem”, and to that I kindly say, true, but one reusable bag can last you a year or longer and the average American family goes through 1,500 plastic bags a year so reusable bags are a wise chose. Although paper bags can be recycled and lots of companies make them from recycled materials why take a single use product you don’t need just for it to end up in the recycle bin less than 24 later. My path is not to live continually finding fault in things or pointing out how something is not good enough. My intention is to be conscious of the impact my life has on the earth and to search out  fun ways I can lessen my impact while I’m here. Cute collapsible reusable bags are a part of that path.

This is a hot topic right now in California because bill 405 is headed to our State Senate. The bill would ban the use of single use plastic bags in all of California. If you feel this is a good idea then click HERE to find out more and sign a petition or find your local senator to give them a friendly call ;)


How many bags are in your trunk? Do you have an awesome collapsible bag yet? I’d love to know what you think!

Peace & Love,


10 thoughts on “Paper or Plastic…really?

  1. I trained myself to take bags in regularly by putting them next to my purse when I got in the car. Now that I have created the habit I rarely forget them even though I now keep them in my trunk. The target or clothing shopping one has been one I don’t do as well on. I will be sure to get a collapsible bag and try to be better. Thank you!

    1. Kristin that is an amazing tip! I love that you left them in the front seat as a reminder…so smart :) You will love your small collapsible bag, they’re the best!

  2. Chico Bags! Same idea as the ones you carry – they’re stuffable into a tiny portable sack. I always have at least one in my purse for unexpected purchases! I bought my first Chico Bag at Staff of Life in Santa Cruz (so that’ll tell you how long ago it was – 8 years??) and am STILL using it weekly. Also, I think LA County and some of the counties in the East Bay have already banned single-use plastic bags and will charge you to purchase paper. Not as good as the state bill proposal, but a start!

    1. OMG that was 8 years ago Aubrey…yikes!
      That is awesome that it has lasted that long. The two I’m using now are 6 and 4 years old, they’re the best!
      I think that because there are so many local cities doing there own bans is a main reason the state is having to deal with it, which is great :) I’ve got my fingers crossed!

  3. This blog is right on! I can expect a certain degree of ‘lag-time’ from the rest of the country, but California is too progressive to act like we aren’t fully aware of the impacts of single-use bags or that can’t do better. Charging for them is a start, but there is too little enforcement to make it a real deterrent for businesses. And, if you have trouble remembering them in your car, here is an…interesting…solution brought to us by Japan:

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