Ziploc bags

I haven’t bought Ziploc bags since 2008.  Know why?

I wash them out and reuse them, drying them in the sun on the clothes line to kill any bacteria. Sure, they get dingy and worn looking, but as long as they seal, I continue to use them. I have also accepted some from friends and at a party to keep them from being thrown in the trash.

When they won’t seal any more, I collect them in a drawer to be sent to TerraCycle who turn them into other plastic products. TerraCylce will even pay you for it!


17 responses to “Ziploc bags

  1. I reuse them as much as I can, but confess I am still buying them every 3-4 months. It all depends on what gets stored–if it is onions or garlic or anything smelly–out they go!
    Keep up the good work.

  2. This sounds pretty extreme. Actually I used to wash and reuse ziplocks but somewhere along the line stopped. Call me irresponsible. Often I will reuse the bags for things where they haven’t really gotten messed up and being sterile isn’t such an issue–such as the bags I continually reuse in my carry-on travel bags in which I keep electronics cords, bottled medications, and items I can take through security checks but don’t want to get lost in my bags. I laud your efforts, but I don’t think I would want to be putting my lunchtime sandwiches in a used baggie. I kind of do my part, but not as much as you. You are an environmental hero.

    Tossing It Out

    • Hi Arlee Bird!
      It does sound extreme because we’re so used to reaching in for a new one. It’s just habit. If you’re brought up doing it all your life, it would seem normal, yeah? Like that sandwich. Unless there is mayo smeared all over the baggie, it’s usually just crumbs—though the chips do sometimes make it a little greasy. A little grease never hurt anything. Just makes it less pretty.
      A hero, huh? You’re a sweetheart, but I’m just out here chipping away like you are. I like to throw out ideas that seem extreme because imagine if we all started doing them. Imagine how much money we’d save! ha!
      Lee, I’m having so much fun! Thank you so, so much for reading my little blog. Your comments are always appreciated. And thanks for the environmental hero comment. You made my heart stand up and clap. Maybe I am making a difference. Even just a dent…!

  3. Enviromental Hero eh! That’s pretty cool.
    I do try to reuse bags but most of mine are used for doggy poo which is not reusable, but mine are not the Ziploc, just ordinary thin plastic bags. If I had ziploc I would be more careful what I used them for.
    Whatever happened to reusable paper bags.?

    Carry on the good work Jennifer!

  4. good going! I reuse those zip locks myself over and over

    • All right earthstonestation! Kudos to you! I know I’m not the norm on this one, but it’s good to know I’m not alone either! Thanks for the comment!

  5. My family rarely uses them now because we use plastic or glass containers for food and have special fabric sandwich wraps as well as cutlery holders. We try to wash and reuse them as much as possible, and the same with styrofoam containers. I don’t know if we have a recycling plant that will take them in Vancouver though-I should look into that!

    • You Canadians have it all together. I have to get up there one of these days and have a look around and see how it’s really done! Your family has the right idea! Thanks Lou and Liz for making a difference!

  6. I reuse mine also….wash them out real good with hot soap and water…let them dry and use them several times….eventually they will also go into the recycling with all the other plastic bags

    • Donna, I learned from the best.
      Make sure your recycling center takes them, though. They can be so picky. If not, hang onto them and I’ll throw yours in with mine when I send them to terracycle.
      Thank you for teaching me so many things.

  7. I haven’t bought ziplog bags for a long time, as well. Yesterday I bought something called Bright Green with 25% less plastic. I just wanted to try them out and see how it works. I don’t like them, though, they are’t strong enough to be clean after one use… .
    Thank you, for the info about TerraCycle. It’s awesome!!! I just signed out 🙂

    When I have the time and energy I crochet with plastic bags. I haven’t done that for a long time, but since my last time I gather a lot of them so I have to make somethign new… .

  8. That’s the link to my post about it:

    and if you’re interested in more here is link to a flickr group of people who crochet (and knit) many AMAZING things from plastic bags:

    Crochet the Puff Spike Stitch
  9. After reading this article I was immediatly reminded of “When defeat comes, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound, rebuild those plans, and set sail once more toward your coveted goal.” — Napoleon Hill

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