If you're looking to lower your environmental impact at home, the kitchen is the perfect place to start. There are zero-waste versions of all your favorite food storage containers, plastic wraps, and cleaners. You can even swap out that partially plastic — sometimes toxic — kitchen sponge for a compostable, reusable, and zero-waste sponge. Peruse a few of our favorites that will revolutionize your dishwashing endeavors, below.
REDECKER Dish Brush Replacement Head
The REDECKER Dish Brush Replacement Head is available from Package Free Shop for $5.95. It can be fastened to a dish brush handle, or it can be effectively used on its own. Its stiff plant fibers make scrubbing down anything easy, and you can wash it by hand a thousand times over. But, if you decide you want to dispose of it, the wooden head and bristles are 100 percent compostable — just remember to remove the metal staples, and place them into metal recycling when you're ready to do so.
Tiny Yellow Bungalow's Plastic Free Bottle Brush
Perfect for cleaning out your reusable water bottles, jars, vases, or small cups, Tiny Yellow Bungalow's Plastic Free Bottle Brush ($12.49) is 100 percent plastic-free, vegan, antibacterial, and biodegradable. It's handmade with natural unbleached coconut fibers, and it can be thrown in the dishwasher for repeated use. Then, at the end of its life, you can throw it in the compost — all you need to do is remove the metal handle when the rest has fully broken down.
Refill Room's Eco Dish Sponges
Derived from the loofah plant, Refill Room's Eco Dish Sponges are completely biodegradable, they come in a pack of three for $6, and they work like traditional sponges — sans the plastic. You can clean them by rinsing, and squeezing out the excess water before leaving them out to dry. You can also soak them in vinegar, or soak them in boiling water to disinfect them. At the end of their lives, simply toss them in the compost bin, and forget they ever existed.
Wild Minimalist's Swedish Dishcloth
The ever-absorbent Swedish Dishcloth strikes again. This reusable and compostable dish towel is available on Wild Minimalist for $9.99, and it's composed of natural cellulose and cotton. At the end of each wash, simply run it under water, squeeze out the excess liquid, and let it dry on its own.
Trader Joe's Pop Up Sponges
Yes, Trader Joe's has it all, including compostable pop-up sponges. A pack of 12 space-saving sponges, which goes for $7.99 each, is the size of one normal sponge, as they're compressed and expand in water. They're made of natural vegetable cellulose, and grow to be about 4 by 3 by 1 inch. They're super study yet relatively gentle, and again, they can be composted once they've run their course.
Tiny Yellow Bungalow's Pear Natural Loofah Kitchen Scrubber
If you're seeking out something aesthetically pleasing, Tiny Yellow Bungalow's Pear Natural Loofah Kitchen Scrubber ($5.99) is all-natural, nontoxic, and compostable. It's gentle for cleaning produce, but tough enough to scrub down pots and pans. To clean it, you can rinse it, squeeze it, and air dry it. The proceeds from each sale will be donated to build new schools, provide medical care, and to establish decent living conditions to farmers in developing countries worldwide.