8 Easy Eco Wins: Eyeshadow Upcycle, Seed Stashing And Snack Hacking

We get it! You want to save the world, but you’re a busy person with a job to do and a new season of The Bear to get through. Rest easy, dear friend, because we’ve gathered eight low-effort, footprint-lowering things you can eat/buy/do in a jiffy – no superhero cape required. 


First, let us say we love Flavedo & Albedo for its zero-plastic commitment and cute, colourful tins. But there’s one more reason it’s won our hearts: while many companies destroy less-than-perfect products, Flavedo & Albedo sell their not-quite-right eyeliners, eyeshadows and illuminators at a discounted price in their ‘Imperfect Picks’ section, now permanently on their site. According to the brand, about five per cent of all makeup produced has some kind of factory fault – a scratch, damaged packaging, wonky lids, that kind of thing – and industry practice is to destroy this completely usable stock.  


What to do when you’ve used up all that lovely eyeshadow? Our Sewing Coordinator, Laura Jackson, has a plan. Having used Wondery Skin Food’s tinted sunscreen and cleansing balm for years (another lovely plastic-free brand), she has a stockpile of air-tight tins filled with seeds saved from the kitchen. “I always note where the herb/vegetable came from,” she says. “Some tins say ‘Nanny’s house’ because she’s always good for sending over a pumpkin that has spontaneously grown in her garden.” 


OK, technically, this eco win will take some time and a whole lot of careful consideration. But the actual act of signing up to Remake’s No New Clothes 90-Day Challenge will only take a few minutes. And just think of all the time you’ll save once you’ve given up shopping! Remake, a collective that fights for human rights and climate justice in the clothing industry, encourages pledgers to pause on the purchase of new clothing and prioritise re-use or secondhand. Reduce your carbon footprint, build healthy psychological habits, limit the waste you send to landfill, and keep your hard-earned dollars from companies that don’t provide their garment workers with living wages or safe working conditions. Time well spent.


Want to buy secondhand but don’t have the time or inclination to rummage through thrift finds? There are lots of online op shops to help you find the preloved dress of your dreams. Dear Little Panko has a curated collection of women’s clothing from many much-loved Australian brands, in up to size 20+, while Good Sammy caters to all, with 100% of profits being reinvested into providing jobs and training opportunities for people with disability. The Closet prides itself on being ‘Australia’s largest online fashion thrift store’, and since its beginnings has processed more than 100,000kg of used fashion items. Meanwhile, the iconic RetroStar caters to all your vintage needs, and Restated serves up vintage to men (one area where men don’t dominate the conversation!). It’d be remiss of us not to mention Depop, eBay and Etsy – there’s a whole world of once-loved clothing out there, ready for its new owners!


We all know plastic bags are trashy, but with so many online businesses sending their wares in reusable cotton bags now, it’s hard to know what you’re supposed to reuse them all for. Our tip? Save them for stashing shoes in your suitcase when you travel, as handy produce bags to hold your fruit and veg or as a portable, reusable cutlery kit. Or save the prettiest ones for storing kids’ toys, jewellery and toiletries. Or get stitching! Use the fabric for scrap-busting projects – patches for clothing (like Laura’s denim handiwork above), scrunchies, small purses… the options are endless!


Does your passion and purpose need a little push? Here are five sustainable fashion films, shared by Fashion For Good, that may not be on your radar. Get comfy, pop some corn, expand your knowledge and fuel your passion for making a difference.


Popcorn you say? Kate Hall AKA Ethically Kate, has a quick, simple recipe for you, minus the usual waste. Grab some kernels from a bulk food store, chuck into a paper bag, microwave for 2-4 minutes and add the toppings of your choice. Too easy! 


Learning how to mend your clothing is a small act with a big impact. As we shared recently, 200,000 tonnes of clothing end up in landfill each year – almost the equivalent of four Sydney Harbour Bridges. Resurrect your wardrobe faves by getting up to speed with some simple techniques, like this list of five easy stitch fixes from Remake, this cute star hack from Ocrafts Girl or have a trawl of this visible mending inspo on TikTok. Need a little more direction, with a coffee and a croissant to save the day? Who doesn’t? The Lily Adelaide Upton’s Mini Stick and Stitch Kit is here to fill your cup (or holes), sans gluten.