Stop Sucking: A Guide to Reusable Straws / by Alexandra Elle

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Stop Sucking! No, really-stop. Straws are the actual, literal worst. It kind of dawned on me one day when I was sipping my afternoon ritual, an iced almond milk latte. If I drink a coffee out a day, that's 365 straws a year x 23 years...by the time I'm 50 I'll have thrown away 9,855 straws?! 

It may seem bananas to think about it this way, but it's actually not. Every amount of waste is cumulative, and every person's personal carbon footprint makes a difference.

Here's the 411 on why plastic straws SUCK:

  • The average person uses 1.6 straws per day. Americans use 500 million straws total per year, enough to wrap around the earth 2.5 times EVERY. Single. Day.
  • They're lightweight, so they blow into waterways where they harm wildlife. By 2050, there will be more plastic than fish swimming in the Ocean :(
  • THEY'RE NOT RECYCLABLE! Once a straw, always a straw. They're one-time-use and don't decompose, which means they will remain on this earth exactly as they are till the end of time.
  • Not only that, but straws are made of plastic which often contain BPAs, which have been linked to hormone disruption, increased breast and prostate cancer cell growth, early onset puberty, and obesity. 

So, now that you've decided that straws are terrible too; I've made a comprehensive guide on my favorite reusable ones. They're all available on Amazon Prime (helllooo convenience). My general consensus is that bamboo is way to pricey, stainless steel is perfect for on the go, and glass is great for at home. I would just avoid anything citrus in the stainless steel. Most of the packs below come with special thin brushes, which make them super easy to clean. Oh, and---watch your teeth!! The hardness of these straws takes some getting used to. When I asked my followers to share their opinions I got a lot of tales of personal injury in the DMs...

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Rose Gold Straws -$18.95 for 8. Comes with cleaners. THESE ARE MY TOP PICK!!! First of all, the rose gold is chic af. They're also a great deal. These come with four rose gold and four silver (which are a little thicker). They come in an adorable burlap bag which is perfect for carrying them on the go! 

Glass Straws - $7.99 for 4. Comes with cleaners. Pros: easier to clean, doesn't affect the taste of anything. Cons: glass makes me anxious af! The fragility of glass doesn't make these great for on-the-go or stuffed in the bottom of your purse (how I roll). So, I love using these at home to help me drink more water (you drink wayyyy more through a straw than sipping). Also perfect for smoothies!

Long Stainless Steel - $8.99 for 8. Comes with cleaners. Warning: These are freakishly long. Like, really long. I'm not sure why. I still included them because I like that they have bent and straight varieties in this pack, and also they're thin which makes you drink your coffee slower!

 Simply Straws - Prices vary, around $7-$10 PER straw! Doesn't come with cleaners. Love the concept but honestly not worth the price! I have the skinny glass straw in 8" length. The thinness is nice for savoring beverages like coffee or wine, and it mimics the width of a plastic straw pretty perfectly. Definitely a splurge!

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I'm committing to saying NO single-use plastic as much as I can. I love trying new coffee shops, but now I just bring my own reusable straws with me and ask for a glass cup to sip in-house! I have a bunch of sets so that I have spares in my car, book bag, gym bag, purses, etc. It's definitely an initial investment, but SO worth it! It’s all about intention, that’s where any real change begins. I'd love for you to join me in this, and please let me know your thoughts and experiences in the comments below!

xoxo

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