I think that one of the easiest ways to be more eco-friendly is by cutting down how much plastic we use in our bathrooms. Here are 10 zero-waste swaps to make in your bathroom…
- Use A Bamboo Toothbrush.
It’s estimated that we use around 300 toothbrushes in our lifetimes – imagine how much plastic is going to landfill or the ocean just from brushing our teeth! Bamboo toothbrushes can compost in your garden and the bristles can be recycled. If you’re an electric toothbrush user, consider using bamboo reusable heads instead of plastic ones. It’s an easy swap that we can all do.
- Shampoo / Conditioner / Soap Bars
Instead of buying more plastic bottles every few months, switch to a bar alternative for your hair care. Not only do they help to reduce single use plastic, they also last much longer making it better for your bank account too!
- Cotton Cloth or Pads
Single-use cotton pads are not only wasteful, but growing conventional cotton isn’t an eco-friendly process. It requires so much water, land, labour and is often grown with pesticides so using a muslin cloth or reusable cotton rounds is both a cost-effective and planet-friendly alternative. I DIY’d my own from an old cotton t-shirt that I wasn’t using. I also made some with a black fabric to use for removing nail polish, and I think they work better than the cotton rounds.
- Reusable Razor
Like toothbrushes, razors are just bits of plastic that usually end up in landfill. Some bigger companies have started to develop recycling programmes but investing in a reusable razor, either made from bamboo or metal, is definitely the best option. They can last for years and replacement blades are usually very cheap, plus easily recycled. People of any gender & age can make this switch- one which most of our grandparents would’ve had as the only option!
- Cotton Buds/Q-Tips
Like cotton rounds, cotton buds/q-tips are single-use and super wasteful! There are a few more eco-friendly options which are either reusable ones made from silicone or plastic free buds. The plastic-free option is usually made with paper and organic cotton, which also helps to reduce the impact of the cotton grown too.
- Plastic-Free Deodorants
Another this we all use (I hope!) is deodorant. Most deodorants are in plastic containers so consider switching to one in a cardboard tube, or try one in a tin. There are plenty of plastic-free options and whilst it can be daunting to start trying a new natural deodorant, once you’re past the transitional period, you won’t go back! I recommend purging the chemicals from your previous deodorants with a clay mask on your pits! It can help speed the swap up.
- Menstrual Cups/Period Pants/Organic Cotton Products
Did you know that sanitary pads can be up to 90% plastic? Help to end period plastic by switching to reusable or plastic-free alternatives. Menstrual Cups aren’t the right choice for everyone, so consider period pants, reusable cloth pads or buying sustainable disposables. Pads and tampons made without plastic and nasty chemicals can be found quite easily now, and are better for the planet and our bodies.
- Plastic-Free Floss
If you’re a regular flosser, you’re basically just cleaning your teeth with strings of plastic. There are now several plastic-free alternatives like corn floss which do the same job, without the pollution.
- Hair Brush & Hair Ties
Did you know that hair ties are just small rings of plastic? Switch to longer-lasting ties like scrunchies or choose an alternative material such as cotton or silk. If your plastic hairbrush has come to the end of it’s life, invest in a bamboo one; it won’t end up in landfill and reduces hair breakage.
- Toilet Paper
This isn’t a product many of us want to reuse, but there are a couple of options to help reduce your overall paper waste! A bidet attachment can help to cut down on the actual amount of paper you’re using, or you could buy toilet paper that’s made from recycled toilet paper.
Hi! I’m Jess from jessrigg.com. I write and host a podcast about sustainability with a particular focus on ethical fashion, responsible travel & zero-waste living. You can find me on @jessrigg_ or listen on The Ethical Conversations Podcast.