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A Locals Guide to Refillables

It’s never been easier to repurpose empty bottles

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PHOTOGRAPHY by
Trisha Weinberg
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October 15, 2020
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Photo by Trisha Weinberg

When a bottle of shampoo or soap runs out, most of us toss it in the recycle bin. This is often the best route we can take but as a recent article from NPR highlights the EPA estimates that less than 10% of plastics are actually recycled. 

Reducing the amount of plastic we use in general takes work but there is an alternative solution to buying a brand new bottle of products. Refill stations are slowly popping up in brick-and-mortar stores where common household and personal-care products are sold by weight.


The difficult part about refilling products is that common retailers don’t offer refill stations, which means going a little out of the way to find a store that does. We created this guide to highlight local shops and resources that offer sustainable refill solutions and more. Here’s what you can expect to find.

Photo by Trisha Weinberg

Local Shops with Refillable Sections


Common Refillable Products

Hand and dish soap

Laundry detergent

Vinegar

Cleaner 

Baking soda

Shampoo

Conditioner

Body wash

Essential Oil

Lotion

Toothpaste (tabs)

Floss


Courtesy of The Nada Shop
Courtesy of Reap and Sow

How It Works

1. BRING REUSABLE CONTAINERS

Any clean glass jar will work or clean and reuse the original product container. 

2. GET A TARE WEIGHT

Ask a staff member to weigh the containers before filling up. This way, you’ll only purchase the weight of the product. 

3. REFILL 

Find the product you need and fill up your container.

4. WEIGH AGAIN AT CHECK OUT

Weigh your container once more to buy. 

5. YOUR PRODUCTS ARE READY

Use products until ready to be filled again.


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