How To Use Your Reusable Bags During Covid–19

Written by Bryn O'Reilly Design Collaborator


Posted on July 01 2020

Many grocery stores have temporarily banned the use of reusable bags to carry out groceries. If you are like me, a religious reusable bag shopper, this can be very frustrating on top of the extra long hunt for the things you need at the store. It pains me to see so many extra plastic bags walking out of the store. Not to mention, my grocery bagger put a SINGLE avocado in one of my bags!! 

So here’s the trick, some grocery stores will allow you to bag your own groceries if you prefer to use your own. This is fine, if you can ignore the judgmental glances from staff and strangers. 

TIP: If you don’t feel comfortable ( as I haven’t during crowded shopping times) opt for brown paper bags. I actually will opt for brown bags if I forget my reusable bags and then use them multiple times or repurpose them in other ways. TIP within a TIP: brown bags can be used as composting material or for mulching! 

I have experienced the worst of this only at grocery stores, many local shops and other stores haven’t minded. If you are only grabbing a few items you can keep the bag on your shoulder instead of placing it on the counter. In an effort to support local business and farmers markets in my area it hasn’t been too hard to put them to good use!

Now onto cleaning. It is still slightly unclear if the virus will live on surfaces and for how long. To be safe; if your bags have the gloss-finish, use a bleach wipe to clean them after each use. If your bags are cloth (like our Dirt tote bag) just stick them in the wash for cleaning! If you are afraid to dry them in the dryer let them hang dry (especially if they have a printed design on them). 

Other uses for reusable bags:

  • Pool / Beach Bag (Wet Bathing Suits/ Towels)
  • Overnight Bag
  • Vacation Shoe Bag
  • Picking Up Clutter Around The House
  • Dirty Laundry (use to separate whites and darks)
  • Garden Planter
  • Consignment / Goodwill Shopping