The typical bathroom is cluttered with disposable items that pose a threat to our environment. A fresh start of the year is the perfect time to assess the situation and start improvement. How is yours? Could your daily personal care routine can become more eco-friendly by gradually switching from disposable to reusable, and from plastic to more sustainable materials?
Among the most polluting objects we use every day, bathrooms goods like cotton buds, plastic toothbrushes, make-up remover cotton and disposable razors are making up a considerable part. Ready for a change? Discover 7 ways to make your bathroom more sustainable:
Toothbrushes are often made of several types of plastic and cannot be recycled. They will degrade into micro plastics and end up mostly in our environment. Instead of a plastic toothbrush, switch to a biodegradable bamboo toothbrush, or to a toothbrush with replaceable head. In either case, there will still be a bit of plastic involved for the bristles, but in a much smaller amount. This is probably one of the easiest and most effective switches you can make!
Reusable cotton rounds
On average, a woman uses 6 make-up remover discs a day (source: Consoglobe). After a quick calculation, this represents no less than 2,160 cotton discs per year! Switch to a set of reusable cotton rounds is actually one of the easiest swap: they look and feel the same, except you wash them instead of throwing them away.
Pro-tip: quickly rinse your rounds in soapy water after use and/or toss them in a mesh bag for a laundry wash with your white linen at 30 or 40°.
Soap, Shampoo & Conditioner bars
Soap, shampoo and conditioners that come in plastic bottles are predominantly composed of water. Their solid versions are prettier, lighter to transport, and very often cleaner in terms of composition.
Look for soap bars that come without box or in recyclable packaging. There are plenty of options out there, so you will undoubtedly find one that will suit you. When it comes to shampoo, some people mention that they had to go through a detox phase that lasted from a couple of days up to 2-3 weeks. So if you are not fully satisfied with the first result, don’t give up immediately and give it some time! Your hair were maybe used to produce more sebum to fight the chemicals from your conventional shampoo. No worries, they will quickly adjust.
Pro-tip: Keep the bars away from water when you're not using them. This will help them to last longer.
Safety razor & Shave Bar
On average, we use one disposable razor a week. That's the equivalent of 52 razors a year! BIC is still selling 11 millions of razors every day (source: Planetoscope). It’s time to switch to a safety razor, don't you think? Safety Razors are 100% metal razor where you only change a 100% metal blade. For even less waste you can also switch to a shave bar and a shaving brush with a natural wood handle.
Cotton swabs are in the top 10 of the most common beach litter, behind plastic bottles and cigarette butts. It’s a real shame when you know that they are basically used for a couple of seconds. One sustainable alternative is reusable cotton swabs made from either metal, wood or silicon. Those are washable and reusable. Or, if you want to have an easier switch with an absorbant material, opt for 100% biodegradable swabs made from bamboo & cotton.
Skin care & Cosmetics
To take one more step towards a zero waste bathroom, try to find alternative products that come in recycled or more sustainable containers like cardboard, glass, metal or wood and try to avoid plastic. Some brands offer refillable options, which is a great way to reduce over-consumption. You may also check if you have a bulk food shop near you who offer naked cosmetics.
Pro-tip: do not try to change everything at once. You can look for a sustainable alternative every time you reach the end of a product.
Get into DIY
There is nothing more satisfying than making things from your own hands. There are many self-care products that you can make yourself such as toothpaste, deodorant, make-up remover, bath bomb, etc. They also make great sustainable gifts!
Change your daily routine step by step and choose the sustainable option that suits you best. Everyone is different, with different needs and different priorities. Be patient and considerate with yourself when implementing all these. Remember, slow and steady wins the race ;)
Picture Credit: Diana Akhmetianova