Compostable or Biodegradable?

What’s the difference?

With many companies becoming more environmentally friendly, words like compostable and biodegradable have started popping up on packaging around the world. 

But what’s the difference? 

Although similar, there are some distinctions between compostable and biodegradable packaging. 


Both compostable and biodegradable products and packaging have the same aim; to break down and return to the Earth. But the difference is that compostable materials will actually add nutrients to the soil. 

Through the unique conditions of sun, water and soil, composting your food scraps or packaging will make them fully break down and create a biodiverse environment. Leaving the Earth better than when you found it. 


While compostable packaging breaks down entirely without producing harmful toxins, biodegradable products can contaminate the soil and environment with microplastics.

Standard biodegradable products usually break down in 3-6 months depending on the conditions of the environment and are designed to break down more quickly in landfills. 

Compared to plastics that can stay on the earth for thousands of years, this is a pretty good deal. 

But by choosing products with compostable packaging you’re providing the Earth with nutrients and it will take less time to degrade. A win-win in our books. 

Read on for 5 of our favourite compostable products to help you make the sustainable switch. 

1. Bamboo Cotton Buds by Eco Shop Co. 

Who could forget the harrowing image of a seahorse holding a plastic cotton bud with its tail? Never has an image summed up the devastation that plastic products are having on our Earth. 

The Eco Shop Co. Bamboo Cotton Buds are a compostable alternative to those pesky plastic ones and use organic cotton to help the breakdown process, making your bathroom sustainable one bud at a time. 

2. Konjac Body Sponge by Eco Shop Co. 

Made from natural ingredients, the Konjac Body Sponge by Eco Shop Co. is a compostable and sustainable alternative to plastic loofahs. 

The soft konjac roots are soft on the skin and can balance pH levels. The most impressive part? They’re 100% compostable so will breakdown after they’ve been used for as long as possible.

3. Dishwashing Scrubber by Eco Shop Co. 

While we all need to clean our dishes, those sponges can be covered in plastic parts and unsustainable materials. The Eco Shop Co. Dishwasher Scrubber is made from a hemp fibre and is plant-based. 

That means that once it’s reached the end of its life you can place it in the compost bin and watch it decompose into the soil. It’s also soft on the hands and doesn’t scratch surfaces.  

4. Compost Kitchen Bags by White Magic

Since we’re on the kitchen products, the Compost Kitchen Bags by White Magic are a great addition to an eco-friendly kitchen.

Made from breathable corn starch, moisture is able to escape reducing bacteria and odours. The bags also break down and can be placed in your compost when you’re ready to dispose of them. 

5. Compostable Disposable Gloves by Biotuff

Gloves are incredibly important for safety and hygiene reasons, especially when preparing food. Sometimes however, they are not eco-friendly and add to the growing pile of landfill we’re grappling with. 

Don’t compromise safety and the environment. These compostable disposable gloves by Biotuff are manufactured using renewable materials and are plastic free. Able to be composted after use, you won’t be rationing your glove use out any longer. 

Head over to Free From Lifestyle to see our huge range of compostable packaging and other tips and tricks to create a more sustainable life.