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Fern Leaves

Do Reusable Q-tips Sound Good to Your Ears?

Updated: Feb 13

reusable q-tips

1.5 billion cotton swabs are produced every day. All of these swabs require resources to produce, ship, and package - all to be thrown out after one use. When these swaps that include plastic are flushed or thrown away, they end up in waterways as microplastics. The average person throws away approximately 415 each year.


(8,000,000,000 X 415 = 3,320,000,000,000/every year)


A tiny object can have a large impact. For example, about 8 million metric tons of plastic enters our oceans each year and disposable cotton swabs make up between 1-6% of this. Land and water use, along with fossil fuel demand, are other impacts associated with them. Thankfully, alternatives do exist!


Reusable Q-tips are reasonably priced, replace approximately 1000 of the regular throw-away swabs, and many experts conclude that they are safer to use. To clean a reusable Q-tip, wash and scrub with hot water and soap for a minute. (Soak for 10 minutes if there is a lot of debris.) After this, it's ready to use again instead of tossing it in a garbage can.


What do you think about this green option and about being able to personally eliminate 415 sticks of plastic from our water and land each year?


Would you try a reusable Q-tip?

  • Yes

  • No

  • Maybe


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