Thursday 31 March 2022

Welcome To The Refillution!

 "And on the way back, we can visit the Ecover Pop-Up shop and get a free coffee" said Liz, as we pushed the buggy through Borough Market. There's a car/van hire place, which usually looks pretty seedy, on the site of an old petrol station, which had been transformed for a couple of days. As we approached we saw old car tyres painted in pastel hues, filled with plants- and people at picnic tables drinking coffee and chatting.

"Welcome to the Refillution" said the sign. A team of cheerful people were explaining all about the benefits of using refillable containers - not just for takeaway coffees, but also for household products like shampoo, washing up liquid, etc.
Did we know about ecover products already? Yes we did. Do we use them? Sometimes. 
We were invited to take an empty bottle and fill it with detergent from the modified 'petrol pump'. "Our only requirement is that you promise to keep this bottle for a year and refill it." said the girl. I'm a little unsure if she meant 'with Ecover w-u liquid' or with anybody's product. I usually buy very large bottles of cheaper stuff and decant anyway. [My little red bottle in the kitchen is almost 40 years old]
"Please go and have a free coffee" they told us. This was delicious Pact Coffee, and was being served in re-usable cups. Neither of us wanted another of these, we have mugs already. I whipped out my Stojo mug, and the guy was very happy to fill it for me. I like the Stojo, because it packs flat in my bag, Once it is empty I squash it down again. [it does not keep the drink particularly hot - but that's fine with me]
I am not as diligent about using refill shops as other bloggers [like Kezzie] as I sometimes find the extra cost is just a bit too high. I often buy bulk sized bottles/boxes and decant. I bought two huge containers of 'professional' concentrated Flash in a 'bogof' in the cash'n'carry in Leicester in 2014 - and I am just about finished them. [That is not to imply I don't use them very often...just that they've lasted ages - I had one in Dorset, one here] And currently I am using washing powder - again a mega sized cardboard box, but for convenience I refill a tin stored by the machine.
Since writing yesterday's post, I found the Big Issue which I bought to read on the bus and left in my shopping bag. It has a whole section on B Corp. The co-founder of BI was Gordon Roddick [of The Body Shop] and he was an early adopter of B Corp recognition. The magazine has a helpful list of B Corp companies. Some of these you may recognise
  • Tea Pigs
  • Oddbox [veg boxes using surplus/wonky priduyce]
  • Divine Chocolate
  • Charlie Bigham's Pies
  • Charity Bank
  • WOB - aka World of Books - buy/sell 2nd hand books
  • Little Soap
  • Cheeky Panda [bamboo products]
  • Big Issue
  • Ella's Kitchen [recycle their babyfood pouches]
  • Danone
  • Ben&Jerry's
  • Gousto [now working with anti hunger charity Foodshare]
Refill, re-use, recycle... and be good, be thoughtful be aware
What kind of world am I leaving for my grandchildren? How can I help cause less damage and make good some of the problems we have caused?


  1. Sounds like a good endeavour they are doing tyi create awareness. The only thing with Ecover is, since they were taken over by one of the big conglomerates (can't remember when and which), their credentials aren't as good and I just read an article on IG on how they are one of the worst palm oil sourcers which us sad as they've been a refill company for a good while which has been a great side of them. When I go to Northumberland, I fill up on Washing up liquid as the 2 shops there have Sesi and Minimal which are reasonable refill brands.
    You've always been very careful with resources. Setting an example got decades!

    1. Ecover claims to use sustainable palm oil - but yes, both Ecover and Method are now owned by multinational SCJohnson - so you're right, they are linked to an outfit which has some 'dubious' eco credentials.

  2. I, too, buy various products like my dish washing soap and laundry detergent in large containers and then, decant to smaller containers for daily use. The larger containers get recycled, eventually.

    1. But we can only do this if we have space to store the big containers. People in tiny flats/apartments do not have the choice.

  3. It's a pity that more products can't be regularly supplied from filling stations in the supermarket instead of only at specialist locales. We had an Eco-shop open during the pandemic and I haven't been in there yet. During the pandemic we had various lockdowns so I never got round to it. I'm cautious about using different detergents for laundry. I used to make my own but over a long period it seemed that my whites became a lot less than white and using a dingy towel is rather depressing as it doesn't seem clean.


Always glad to hear from you - thanks for stopping by!
I am blocking anonymous comments now, due to excessive spam!