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15 Zero-Waste Bathroom Swaps To make Today

As you’re making your way through a more minimalist, zero-waste lifestyle, one of the essential steps, is to make a few changes (at a time) and switch the plastic/disposable items you use with more sustainable alternatives. One of the first I did, was my bathroom. I analyzed what I had there and since the place was overcrowded an my boyfriend was moving in, I had to make room: I took a box, and took all the things I hadn’t used for over 6 months and… there was a lot! zero waste bathroom - a greener lifeI gave to local communities and thrift stores the items I could give, and recycled the rest. I only kept the basics. I think it’s a pretty good list of zero-waste essentials to have in a bathroom. Nota bene, don’t replace perfectly good items! Read this post on the what is Zero-Waste and best practices for more info.

For the Hair:

  • Shampoo and Conditioner. Instead of buying your shampoo in plastic bottles, make it yourself! There are great recipes online, the easier would be to mix baking soda in water. Read about it here – and apple cider vinegar or witch hazel make great conditioners. If you’re not ready to make things, there are great stores such as Sew Seasons that have basic hair care product in bulk. Simply go with your jar, and you’re good to go!
  • After-wash moisturizing spray. That’s my little thing to have my hair as smooth as when I was using chemically charged conditioners. I’ll dedicate a post to it soon because it’s worth the share. These are the top 3 essentials I have for hair care. I’m not a huge mask person, so if I really need one, I make it one avocado, egg or banana based (posts on the subject coming soon).
  • Hair brush: Switch to a sustainable brush like the one wooden ones. They actually spread the natural oils better than the plastic ones and are more gentle on the scalp. Everyone wins!

For the Face:

  • Moisturizing (anti-aging) cream. Here’s a cool anti-aging face cream recipe I made and love. Honestly, stop overspending on face creams that are often not really effective. And make it or go to your bulk store and get the one in bulk. Like for the shampoo, it’s often in the body care section. You bring your container, fill it. Done.
  • Toothpaste and mouth-wash. These were one of the first things I changed. Both are very easy to make and don’t take anything away from the one you’d buy in store… expect the plastic disposable container and the unhealthy products in them. Make your own toothpaste today using this recipe.
  • Cue-tips. There are great sustainable brands out there and reusable stainless steel sol
  • Sustainable toothbrush. An essential swap to make going Zero-waste, read my blog post on the subject here.
  • Deodorant. Another one that I really enjoy making and prefer to my old store deodorant. Use this recipe to make your own.
  • Face Cleaning Pads. Some may think that the cotton pads are sustainable in themselves and this should not be changed, it is for sure not the most sensitive thing to change. But there’s a lot of chemicals to make those pads as white as they are. I would therefore suggest switching to reusable ones like these ones or on Etsy there are great crafters there.
  • handkerchief. Time to bring the good ol’ handkerchief back in style! It’s way more sustainable than any other solutions. You can make them yourself or get some like these!

For The Body:

  • Soap: I found great, non-packaged bar soaps at my local coffee shop, (believe it or not!) make a someone from the neighborhood. Therefore, I have put making my own soap at the bottom of the list, but still plan on making some my own soon.
  • Body Scrub: Using sugar, coffee, or sand if you live close to the beach, it’s very easy and inexpensive to make a great scrub!
  • Body Butter: I recently make my first body butter (a little like the face cream here) and I was surprised to see that it is not that difficult! (easier than the face cream for sure). I’ll share it soon.
  • Women’s hygiene pads: There are so many great options available on the market now! We now can use cups, absorbing underwear, organic pads and tampons, reusable pads… Choice is ours! I personally like the cup and the menstrual underwear. I will mention though, I recently learned there was a study held in France that was warning ladies on the danger of the cup. It is not healthy to leave to cup for too long as it can create a hub for microbes. Empty it every 2 hours to avoid any issues.
  • Razor: When I got mine, I wondered why the plastic one took over at some point… It’s healthier, cleaner that the disposable ones and note for sensitive skins, it will work better that the 5 blades ones.

How much have you switch so far? Are you noticing something important that is not listed or au contraire,  this article really helped you get closer to your zero-waste goals? Please shoot me a comment, I always appreciate feedbacks from the community!

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  • Sarah

    Great list! However, switching to a sustainable hairbrush is the opposite of zero-waste if you have a perfectly good one already.

    • Dina Le Roux

      HI Sarah, thank you for your comment. Indeed you’re very right thanks for mentioning it. You’re right: 1st reuse what you have especially if they work great. Only if you don’t have one, should you make the purchase! I’ll add it to the post 👍

  • rachaelmr

    All great suggestions and perhaps you are less maintenance than me (which is amazing, since honestly, I am rural and find it hard to even care about my appearance most days – ha!) or maybe it’s because I have a small family but what about things like band-aids, feminine products, vitamins and pain relievers, thermometers and nail clippers. I look at my ‘minimal shelves’ and I still have a little bag of healthy make-up, essential oils, sunscreen, castor oil, calendula, arnica, witch hazel, man’s shaving cream, floss and then the equipment (hair clippers, hot water bottle, bandages/wraps, travel containers). I eschew packaging and plastic when I can, don’t use products with petroleum or other toxins, use a shampoo bar and homemade soaps and crochet cloths/wooden hair brush, make my own deodorant and toothpaste, lozenges/cold-sough syrup and still have to have a waste bucket and 2 cabinets. You truly are a magical minimalist!

    • Dina Le Roux

      OH my, first I don’t know why I didn’t see your post before and apologize for not responding before. Thank you for your comment and feedback, and mostly congrats on deciding not to use petroleum-based products and using the type of products you use. This is a good selection you have. I agree things can quickly get crazy, especially in the bathroom! One day, I simply decided I was over the piles of products I never use and thought I’d use things more if I narrowed down to what I needed and was going to use.
      Years after, my initial post, I still have a small bathroom and no trash can, but I buy on occasion some products (My friend makes great products and I got obsessed with Aesop – Eco-friendly products in glass packaging). I am getting ready to grow my own herbs so I can make my own remedies when the season comes. That’s awesome you make your deodorant and toothpaste. These are so much fun to make 😀 Thanks again for your message!

  • Lisa Brady

    Hi I’m entering the Saggy Face Stage of life and have been looking at all the Korean remedies but I have a Conscience so I’m Stuck it has only
    Crept up on me in the last year, as I tend to avoid mirrors and deliberately don’t clean them, so I can’t see myself and then Christmas comes along and it’s always a big shock, the yearly slap in the face got to see people so do you have any ideas on Remedies? I will say one thing you would be amazed how many products like Bamboo Toothbrushes, Body Brushes, Menstrual Cups and Waxed reusable paper and beautiful Soap Bars go for a fraction of what you would pay on our Favourite go to site. All hiding On AliExpress but all these face products all of that snail Mucus and Face lift Strips and Paper masks individually wrapped certainly a lot of waste but a Saggy face will I falter? They have contraptions like face Bras and Infa red Machines with LEDs do you have any advice or know where to point me please Love the post BTW
    I have read a couple this week of yours Thanks To Green Coast sharing your blogs.

    • Dina Le Roux

      Hi Lisa. First I wanted to say that I am sorry you’ve entered a not so friendly relationship with mirrors so to speak. You should not feel this way and I blame it on our society always looking at youth as the model to tend to. In regards to taking care of your skin, you have a variety of solutions but it depends on what you’re looking for. DIY with quality based products will go a long way. If you are not into DIY, which I can totally understand, I would recommend looking into clay masks. There are great options out there. One of my fav is the Indian Healing Clay one. It’s uniquely composed of bentonite clay. You can mix it with water or apple cider vinegar. To go further you can also add a drop of Frankincense or rosehip essential oil If you use water base and not vinegar). It’s also good to shift, so I would recommend doing it once per week and you altern between water-based and vinegar-based. That should help you with cleaning your skin and helping it. Always finish with a good hydrating cream. That you should do once to twice per day. You can also use base products like Pomegranate seed oil is great for its recovering and protecting properties. A few drops will go a long way.
      It’ll take a few weeks/months before seeing significant results, but if you start now, you might be in great shape when the sunny days are back.

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