Easy toiletry swaps to make
The bathroom is one of the easiest places to start your mission to reduce the amount the plastic waste in your home. A lot of the plastic in your bathroom probably comes in bottle form, and as we now know that not a lot of these are being recycled by local councils. Reducing and refusing plastic is now known to be more effective than just tossing it in your recycling bin.
Luckily these days it's becoming easier to reuse your plastic bottles by refilling them with the product again, or to make a switch over to alternative containers made with aluminium or glass. And of course there are shampoo bars and conditioner bars that are completely plastic free hair care products. Alongside these changes there are many more ways that you can reduce the amount of single use plastic in your bathroom.
Here are six other swaps that you could make in your bathroom to save plastic from ending up in landfill or the ocean.
Opt for a bamboo toothbrush
And while you're at it, have you ever tried toothpaste tablets? These are kinda like a shampoo bar but for your teeth. The idea is to chew the tablet to turn it back into a paste before brushing. Toothpaste tubes are very difficult to recycle because of the number of different materials they are made from. Georganics does the whole spectrum of plastic free dental care – tabs, pastes, mouthwashes, floss, the lot.
Switch to soap
Instead of bottled body wash, you could be using good old fashioned soap. There are so many artisan soap makers now, all making beautiful smelling bars. One of my favourite makers is Soap Daze. Invest in a decent soap dish (that drains water away and doesn't create a soggy puddle) and a soap saver or a loofah. Both of these are made with natural fibres so are compostable once you've finished with them (unlike those nylon shower puff things) and give you a nice, lathery exfoliation.
Use re-usable wipes
Buy them or make your own. I have some that are made with patterned cotton scraps one side and softer jersey the other. I just leave them by the sink and use a bit of soap to wash them after each use, then stick them in the washing machine every now and then.
Change up your period wear
There are soooo many options available to women now that don't involve single use plastic. For a bit of an initial investment, and a bit of getting used to, there are reusable menstrual cups, pads and period pants. If that's too much all at once, there are brands of disposable sanitary wear that are eco and plastic free, using more natural materials like organic cotton and compostable applicators and wrappers. (AndSisters is a great example.)
Buy skincare in glass or aluminium
These materials are much more readily recyclable. Plastic free make up is a little harder to source, but finding plastic free skincare is easy, with a few tweaks. Rather than a face wash, try a cleansing oil or balm, my favourites are by Lucky Cloud. They're much kinder on your skin, especially dry skin like mine, and they don't leave you with that tight feeling that face washes do.
Try deodorant cream in a tin
Elsa Organics deodorant in a tin was the first natural one I ever tried. From then on I was convinced that a natural deodorant does actually work. Even in summer. It comes in an aluminium tin, it lasts for ages and the scents are lovely and subtle.
That's a good start!
There are many, many other little switches you can make to reduce plastic in your bathroom – like razors, plasters, ear buds, sponges, nail brushes, the list goes on... The important thing is to not overwhelm yourself – cover the basics first and then go from there. And don't just ditch everything, use the things up that you already have first.
And save your empty bottles if they can be reused!