How to reduce waste in the bathroom

 

Where should I start in order to reduce my waste in the bathroom?

If you haven’t read the first article regarding zero waste, just go and check out Zero Waste principles.

Some extra reading:

  • To reduce all your kitchen and cleaning waste
  • To go on a 31 Zero Waste Challenge
  • To find where to buy any bulk food in Scotland
  • To make your own laundry detergent (using only 1 ingredient and water!)

 

Here is a summary of the Zero Waste principles in order of implementation:

  • Refuse
  • Reduce
  • Reuse
  • Recycle
  • Compost

 

Sort your stuff

First off, sort the things you own.

This is one of the most important elements: it might seem odd,  but the fewer things you own, the more we feel free and light. Clutter can be oppressive.

 

Find alternatives

 

Here is a little tour of the products we use or we had the opportunity to try out. There are dozens of others, but we prefer to advise you about what products we know of and that we have tested.

 

To wash yourself

 

  • Soap

Choosing soap is important. This is what keeps your skin clean and hydrated. Industrial soaps dry out the skin as, most of the time, the glycerin (which naturally hydrates the skin) resulting from the chemical reaction of saponification is removed.
Once you have found a handmade and organic soap you can even use it to wash your face!

From left to right: Home-made soap (Workshop Fais-le toi-même et sauves ta planète) – Organic & vegan soap, carrot juice & Agave nectar (La savonnerie du nouveau monde) ~ 5 €
  • Shampoo, conditioner

These are solid bars of shampoo and conditioner. You need to wet and rub them on your hair for a few seconds in order to use them. Shampoo and conditioner will definitely cost you more but you will use it at least for twice as long!

From left to right: Natural, vegan, practically entirely organic conditioner, rice milk sweetie (Pachamamaï) ~ 11 € – Organic shampoo, sage and yellow clay (Douce Nature) ~ 5 € – Natural and vegan shampoo, practically entirely organic, for dry hair, orange (Lamazuna) (not the one on the picture) ~ 12,50 €
  • Toothpaste and toothbrush

What? A solid toothpaste? Yes, it exists, and it’s great!

The mint and fluoride-free natural toothpaste that we use lasts as long as two tubes of toothpaste. It is super convenient to carry and travel with, and the small box is rechargeable.

How to use: lightly moisten the toothbrush, rub it against the solid toothpaste and then brush your teeth. the coal one will last you for more than 7 months.

We advise the bamboo toothbrushes as they are compostable.

  • Oriculi

Cotton swabs, regardless of it being waste, are not recommended by doctors because of the risk of pushing earwax into the ear and forming plugs!

Down below is one of the 2 alternatives: either a re-usable ear-pick in stainless steel or a more eco-friendly one in bamboo.

Oriculi: reusable bamboo Q-tip (Lamazuna) ~ 4 €
    • Deodorant

Baking soda! Apply it directly with your fingers under the armpits. It neutralizes odors but it does not block perspiration.

It works nearly all the time and is really really cheap: Around 1 € to 1,5 € per year!!

Baking soda in bulk ~ 3 €/kg

Using makeup and taking care of yourself

 

  • Make-up Remover

Why use disposable cotton make-up remover when you can use a softer, more comfortable, bigger, and also cheaper (over time) reusable cotton make up remover!

Simply rub it under water after removing make-up, wash it quickly with a bit of soap or put it in the Washing machine once in a while.

As a make-up remover, I (Lucie) use deodorized coconut oil, it´s soft and avoids drying out the skin.

Reusable make-up remover cotton ~ 1 à 2 € each (often in batch)
  • Hair Comb

The best is to have a hair comb that you can compost, whenever you cannot use it anymore!

Advantages: it has thicker teeth than usual combs.

Bamboo comb (Croll & Denecke) ~ 5 €
  • Cream

I recommend this solid cream, with its wonderful frangipan smell. I especially recommend it for people with dry skin!

Solid cocoa butter with baobab oil and frangipani (Lamazuna) ~ 10 €
  • Konjac sponge

Made from powdered konjac root and water, it is very pleasant to touch, it gently exfoliates and cleanses the pores.

Before using it, just put it under water (optional: add some soap), then rinse and hang it so that it dries. Daily usage, it lasts several months and can be composted.

Konjac sponge (Lamazuna) ~ 9 €

 

  • Menstruation: cup

LIBERATION! Using a cup really changed the way I live my menstruation.

  • Budget-friendly
  • No need to go into the menstruation department in the supermarket
  • Can be kept for 12 hours (I recommend trying to keep it for less)
  • Lasts for 10 years
  • No chemicals or additives
  • No dry vaginal wall
  • No more smell
  • Lightens the handbag
  • Improves your body knowledge
  • No more tampon collection
  • Always ahead of time

At first, it is not easy for everyone to place it well, but hey, putting a tampon for the first time was not the easiest thing either!

(I do not recommend the cup for those who are not at ease with their sexuality).

Cupissima ~ 10 €

Step by step guide

Bea Johnson – Zero Waste

Where to buy?

Go to your local Co-ops and ask them to order the products. All the Pachamamai and Lamazuna products are packaged in cardboard and all packaging is therefore recyclable. Some stores might even find a way to make deals and avoid the packaging, as its the case in of of the bulk shops in Toulouse.

Check out organic stores.

On the webpages of the abovementioned brands (there are probably other great brands!).

 

Zero waste is not only environmentally friendly, it’s budget-friendly and good for your health!

Share your ideas and experiences in the comments!

Lucie & Joachim