The best zero waste wash bags are made from organic or recycled materials. These are ideal to use, when times come to replace. If you buy wash bags made with synthetic fibres, launder in a Guppyfriend, to stop microplastics breaking off in the machine, and reaching the sea.
This wash bag made from upcycled truck tyres is a great idea. Tyres cause fire hazards at landfills and although they can be recycled other goods, you have to be careful, as they still contain plastic (so for instance, flops made from tyres are fine for pottering around the garden, but not at the beach, as if you lose on in a wave, that’s more plastic going back into the ocean). Each one is unique, featuring the original tyre markings. Obviously as it was a car tyre, it’s waterproof too. And a tree is planted for each wash bag sold.
An Organic Cotton Wash Bag
SOP Organic Cotton Wash Bag from Norfolk is made from premium organic cotton canvas. It’s screen-printed with vegetable inks, and features a sleek gold YKK (quality zip). Nickel-free. Ideal to store your toiletries or for an overnight stay, this is a better choice than most wash bags, which are made from plastic, nylon or leather.
A Wash Bag made from Reclaimed Fire Hose
This wash bag made from recycled fire hose makes a nice luxury gift. Lined with waste parachute silk (likely nylon, modern ‘silk’ rarely is), it’s ideal to store toiletries or for an overnight stay. Wipe-clean. Elvis & Kresse (Kent) is a social enterprise that makes ‘vegan leather’ goods from recycled fire hose. 50% of profits from each sale go to charities that help present and retired firefighters.
A Luxury Vegan Leather Wash Bag
This luxury vegan leather wash bag (also sold at WEARTH London) features a roomy centre compartment with full-length zipped compartment and 2 smaller pockets. There is a side pocket for smaller items. Unlike some leathers, this one is PVC-free. Beautifully wrapped in recycled gift packaging. Also in black.
A Wash Bag made from Used Tyres
This wash bag made from used bike tyres is simple and practical, and perfect to store your toiletries, and keep them safe when travelling. Made by fairly paid artisans in Malawi, the bag is unlined and has a stitched carry handle, along with a sturdy full length zip.
The wallet is sold by Cycle for Good, a company helping to end poverty in one of the poorest countries on earth. It employs 10 Malawian tailors who are paid a full-time living wage for skilled work, so they can support their families without handouts. Profits are used to fund childcare, education and non-profit social enterprises.
If you think of the millions of bikes that get discarded each yea, the bike tyres need to be recycled. Cycle of Good sells nice gifts for vegans, including bags and pencil cases made from inner tubes, with profits helping developing countries. Although they look like rubber, most bike tubes contain some kind of plastic too, so can’t be recycled with your normal household waste. For this reason, making them into new items is the best way to stop them languishing at landfill.
Around 44,000 tons of bike tyres and inner tubes are landfilled each year alone in the UK. Staffordshire company Velorim is helping to close the loop, by launching a national recycling scheme, so that indie bike shops earn money for taking back and recycling tyres (50p) or inner tubes (20p). The material will then be collected, and made into new products.