Welcome to my blog! I document my journey to sustainability through being as vegan and zero waste as possible as a student. Hope you have a nice stay!

Back to Uni: Sustainable Stationery

Back to Uni: Sustainable Stationery

Welcome to the first post in my back to uni series! Today I’m talking about stationery which is better for the planet than the usual plastic or non-recyclable types you would find. I’ve included a range of different items under each category which vary in price and style so that there are items for everyone. The most environmentally friendly option is to use what you already have, but these are all great options for when you’ve used them up!



The most sustainable pen option would be a refillable fountain pen, but these are pretty expensive (upward of £45!) so here are some cheaper options which still have great sustainability points.

Natural Grass Pen

These Natural Grass pens are the best option I’ve found (and the ones I will be using), which are made from natural meadow grass and recycled BPA-free plastics. You can also get refills for these pens, which means they’re designed to be used again and again, making them much better than single-use pens. These pens are £4.50 each but are designed to be long-lasting so it’s not too much to pay in comparison to a fountain pen.

Recycled Paper Pen

These recycled paper pens are made entirely from recycled paper and plastic, which means no new materials need to be produced to make them. These are available to bulk buy in boxes of 10 which is £5 a box. Again, these are a cheaper option than getting a singular refillable pen but are still a good environmentally friendly option.

Recycled Retractable Medium Ballpoint Pens

These are another cheap option of pens which have a more comfortable handle type, perfect for when you need to do lots of writing. These are made from recycled milk cartons and packed with recycled materials printed with soy-based inks. These cost £2.95 for three pens so they’re around a similar price to typical pens.



Recycled Newspaper HB Pencils With White Eraser

These pencils are made from recycled newspapers which makes them more sustainable than typical pencils. These are the cheapest of the two options of pencils I’m going to talk about, as you can get a pack of ten for £3.20, similar to standard pencils. These are a great option if you’re on a budget but still want to be sustainable!

Sprout Pencils

These sprout pencils are very cool, as when you can’t use them any longer you can plant them and flowers will sprout! They’re also made from environmentally friendly materials and have lots of different seed variations. These are a more expensive option, coming in at £10.95 for a box of 8, but are a super cool option. The only bad thing about these is that they’re only available on Amazon, so if you do order these make sure to get them on amazon smile so that some of the money goes to charity.



Highlighters can be a difficult one to find a sustainable option of, however, there are two main options. You can either get highlighter pencils which have no plastic involved or get ones made of recycled plastic.

Highlighter Pencil Set

This highlighter pencil set from Muji is a great option which is better than typical plastic highlighters. This set is a little pricey as it costs £14.99 for two pencils but it does come with a sharpener and a clip. These don’t contain plastic but also aren’t made from recyclable materials, so you’ll have to weigh up the options before you choose which ones to get.

Recycled Fine Highlighters

These highlighters are made from recycled plastic and are the best budget-friendly option. It’s £4.25 for a pack of four and it comes in a range of colours which means there is lots of choice. These are good value and come in nice colours, these will be the ones I get after I’ve used my current highlighters up.


Ring Binders

Kraft recycled A4 ring binder

I have a few of these recycled ring binders and they are so good for organising all of my work. These are from Paperchase and are available in most stores so you don’t have to order online (less carbon footprint, yay!). These cost £3.50 each so come at an affordable price point and are eco-friendly.


Notebooks & Paper

I’ve picked three different types of notebooks and paper, depending on what you prefer to write on, so there should be an option for you.

"Thought Book" A5 Notebook

This notebook is made with recycled and FSC approved paper, and the company is based in the UK which is even better. It also has a lovely design on the front and is great if you use notebooks to separate your different modules. I’m going to be ordering a few of these as I prefer using notebooks to keep my work organised. These only cost £2 a notebook so are inexpensive and sustainable!

Recycled Save The Rhino Pad

If you prefer writing on pads of paper, then this is for you. This pad has 160 A4 pages made from recycled paper. Also, some money from each purchase goes toward the Save the Rhino charity which is an added bonus. This pad of paper only costs £2.61 so is definitely on the same price level as typical pads of paper so is a good option.

Recycled Save the Rhino Notebook

This is another option for just a standard pad of paper, but this comes in a notebook form with tear-out pages. As it’s also from Save the Rhino, some money will go towards the charity if you decide to buy it. Again, it is made from 100% recycled materials and it only costs £3.89, along the same price level as typical pads of paper.


Overall, when looking for stationery try to opt for ones made from recycled materials. This limits the number of new materials that need to be processed and manufactured to make new products. These products are more sustainable options, but are still all budget-friendly so are easy swaps to make.

I hope you’ve found this post useful! Keep an eye out for the rest of my back to uni posts!

Hannah x

Please note: some links used in this post are affiliate links but all opinions are my own.

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