5 Easy zero waste or sustainable swaps for the bathroom
Going zero or low waste and be quite overwhelming at first, when you realize how many items you use every day. Tackling one room at the time lets you slowly convert your habits and will make them more likely to stick in the long run.
These are some of the easiest zero/low waste swaps I have found for the bathroom:
First you have probably heard already about it. Bamboo toothbrushes, they cost about the same as the plastic version and the come in a lot of variations and designs.
Bamboo is one of the most sustainable and versatile plants on Earth. It is in the grass family and is extremely fast growing compared to trees. It also does not need any of the nasties to grow successfully.
It is naturally anti-bacterial, making it perfect for use in your personal hygiene routine. And best of all it is biodegradable, except for the plastic bristles (those must be pulled out before going into the compost).
Alternatively, toothbrushes with changeable heads or ones made from recycled plastic could be a great option too.
Soap, we all use it, I hope. In the good old days, everyone used bar soap. Somewhere along the way the liquid version became the norm, at least here in Denmark. While liquid soap is great and all, it does come with a lot of plastic packaging. Using packing free soap bars are probably the most zero waste product, with little compromise, you can find. They come on a million scents and colours, organic or vegan there is a version for everyone. Try finding ones that don’t use palm oil or use sustainably grown palm oil.
Use a lemon soap bar for your hands and an olive oil soap for your body, or maybe lavender to calm you in the shower. Make your own or support a small business in your local community, the possibilities are endless.
All you need is a good soap dish to help your soap to dry between washes, and you are good to go. They last forever and will save the environment a lot of unnecessary plastic bottles while saving you some money.
It does take a bit of adjustment, like with many things it’s about habits.
Alternatively refilling a bottle at your local zero waste store, is a good option for those that prefer the liquids.
Reusable facial rounds
If you have an actual skincare routine (looking at the people that wash their face with body wash and does nothing else) you probably have some cotton rounds laying around. Cotton is one of the worst natural materials. Especially the non-organic kind, since it uses tons of water along with the use of harmful fertilizers and insecticides.
So, switching out your single use cotton products with a reusable version, should be a no-brainer. Reusable facial rounds, like the ones we offer, are a fantastic alternative. The come in many versions and can even be homemade from an old towel, if you are the DIY type.
The biggest habit change with these ones are not throwing them in trash bin, instead place the dirty ones in a washing bag or container. The next time you do the laundry you just throw them in with the rest. Then it is ready to be used again and again.
And while I can’t say this for all brands, our version are a 100 % biodegradable, sewing thread include, which means they can also be composted at the end of their life.
Being a skincare and makeup junkie myself, compromising on it is a bit harder than other areas.
Less is more and cutting down to the essentials will not only help create less waste but also streamline your routines. Some only use coconut oil for everything in their skincare routine. I personally can’t use it in anything, as it will break me out, but it is a great option for those that can. I prefer finding products without packing, like a face wash soap bar, or only buying product in glass or recyclable/refillable packing. Like the Youth To The People Superfood Cleanser, it comes in a glass bottle and contains good clean ingredients.
I won’t claim my skincare routine is 100 % plastic free or sustainable yet, but I’m working on replacing one product at the time, without breaking the bank and destroying my skin.
Shampoo and conditioner bars
Along the same lines as the bar soap. Shampoo and conditioner bars are great options to ditch the plastic bottle. You just lather them up in your hand or directly on your head and proceed like normal.
Personally, I find the switch a bit harder since hair can be so different for everyone. All shampoo bars are not the same and you might have to test a few one out, to find the right one. They are also not as assessable everywhere yet which makes it a bit more inconvenient. Alternative refilling bottles or making your own are good options as well. When it comes to conditioners I found that this conditioner bar, from on Etsy, works really well and leaves my hair untangled and soft. And their shampoo bar is great too.
Using the bars them self are not hard, once you find the one that works for you. I like the ones from Lush, sadly we don’t have a Lush store in Denmark.
And last of all don’t forget the most important rule of zero waste and sustainable living, use what you have first.