The 3 "good design award" finalists, to go #zerowaste

Existing alternatives strengthen the narrative of sustainable options and lifestyle. There are 3 finalists products for the Good Design award category, supporting alternatives:

1. Reusable sandwich wrap

Boc'n'Roll, a reusable sandwich wrap, is a substitution product for all the wrapping aluminium and plastic foils that are used to wrap sandwiches daily. It is designed to last, with good quality of fabrics and can be made locally. It can easily be washed in the washing machine and it is perfect to bring always with you, in case you need to buy a takeaway sandwich.

Considering using reusable products is not only good for the environment but also for your economy: After 10 years of using a reusable sandwich wrapper, a person that daily wraps a sandwich in foil, will save around 1200 meters of single use paper.
After these 10 years, you will have spent more than 200 euros on foil…(source: Roll’Eat)

*considerations on the estimation:
33cm foil/sandwich;
1 sandwich/day;
3 days  1m of foil;
1 year = 121 m of foil;
10 years = 1210 m of foil;
1m of foil = 0,20€ ;
1210m of foil: 243€
CONCLUSION: 10 years using disposable wrapping foil = 243 €

2. Upcycled clothes

One of the biggest waste streams, which is exponentially increasing year after year, is clothing. Fast fashion is not sustainable for several reasons such as labour conditions, air pollution, chemicals dumped into seas and oceans, and microfibers escaping into the environment.

Wear a Story is a new clothing brand started by the designer Lauriane Milis. The aim, is to create wearable, trendy and comfortable clothes while looking for ethics on the materials and production process. 

This local upcycling appears to be a good answer to the ethical part. As raw material, the brand uses garments that are unsuitable for the Belgian second hand market as well as organic cotton.

Keeping business locally is a way to reduce the CO2 print, and at the same time support the creation of job positions that believe in a sustainable transition. 

3. Menstrual Cup

According to an average estimation, every woman uses around 150 tampons/pads a year, . This means, that these disposable product become waste after 4-8 hours of use (or after 1 minute if we consider the ones with applicator). Using a reusable menstrual cup, means not to dispose around

Pads and Tampons are usually a highly taxed product, considered in many countries as a luxurious product. Basic needs, such as the right to an accessible and healthy way of dealing with menstruation periods, should be a right and not a business that destroys our environments and prevent women to be healthy during this period.


By using a menstrual cup, you will not only have less impact on the environment but more stuff: , better health (tampons are not as healthy for our bodies), more time for you (you don’t have to think to buy tampons anymore!) savings (around 400€ after 10 years), which you will be able to spend on dinners, travelling or going to the movies! 


After taking a look at the 3 finalists of sustainable alternatives, what can we say about the transition towards a zero waste lifestyle?

  • going zero waste does not mean to sacrifice our personal time and do it all ourselves. It most likely is a smart and sustainable way of living along with natural patterns and resources. Being coherent in what we need.

  • going zero waste is not an overnight change. Starting by little changes we will be able to be more resilient and open to greater challenges.

  • going zero waste implies to be more conscious of our acts and look for less wasteful products

  • going zero waste means to invest some minutes on finding alternatives that will last you so long that you will not have to spend more time (and money) on buying reusables anymore

  • going zero waste allows you to recognise the value of the products from the source until its end of life

  • going zero waste is about educating ourselves and the ones that surround us about the environmental footprint that waste means for the environment