Take a peek into my zero waste bathroom and make some small changes for a big impact.
As I started to be more conscious about the products I use and how much plastic waste I make, I thought I would share it with you and maybe help you make better choices or try something new. So in this post I will share what I have in my bathroom.
To make it more realistic, I will be completely honest with you and mention all the stuff I have and still use – plastic and non-plastic. This is my personal choice so don’t feel like you have to go and buy the same. I’m still testing and changing some products. But I wanted to share this with you just to show you the range of possibilities. Also, I will link all the products below in case you are interested. So let’s start.
Below is the list of everything I use;
• Hand soap bar
• Bamboo Toothbrush
• Powdered toothpaste
• Dental floss
• Plastic tongue scraper
• Shampoo bar
• Body wash bar/shaving soap
• Home-made makeup remover
• Face and body moisturiser
• Reusable Bamboo and cotton make-up pads
• Cotton and bamboo buds
• Menstrual cup
• Recycled toilet paper
Hand soap was my first zero waste swap. It’s kinda basic but very important as you will reduce a ginormous amount of plastic throughout the year. I can definitely recommend the one I use as I haven’t used a hand cream since. You don’t have to buy a special soap but I always tend to buy one without parabens, perfumes, SLS and ingredients I can’t pronounce. Usually, a soap is supposed to be made of only a few ingredients. I linked the brand I use for over two years now and most of them are made of coconut oil, shea butter, olive oil, essential oils, and water. Simple and yummy.
Friendly soap is definitely my fav brand : Hand soap
I tried a few bamboo toothbrushes and there is not much difference. It depends mostly on your preference; Do you prefer soft, medium, or hard bristles. When it’s time to change it, reuse it for some other purposes. For example, I use my old one for cleaning and when it’s worn out I will toss it in my compost bin. Some bamboo toothbrushes are 100% biodegradable (bristles and a handle-like these two on the photo) while some just have a biodegradable handle. In that case, take out the bristles with pliers, put it into your plastic recycling, and the handle into your compost bin.
I’m using this one: Toothbrush
Usually, most of the people said how toothpaste is the toughest thing to swap as they have a very specific taste and texture. There are tons of DIY videos and recipes for making your own toothpaste but I still haven’t tried any. I had problems with my teeth since childhood so I’m pretty skeptical when it gets to choosing dental products. I tried a few different brands and decided to stick to this one (linked below). The taste is great (it just takes some time to get used to it) and the texture is not bad as well. These kinds of toothpaste don’t foam but you can actually feel how squeaky clean your teeth are. When you finish your toothpaste you can always reuse the container for storing something else. Another option is buying toothpaste tablets which you chew until you make a paste of it and then just brush your teeth as you would usually do. I haven’t tried it yet but it sounds good.
Twice a week I also use this natural toothpowder with activated charcoal which helps with stains and plaque removal. The same brand as the toothpaste. I need to be honest with you, it’s a bit messy. But the results are great so it’s worth it 🙂
I use a charcoal dental floss made of sustainable bamboo charcoal fibre, candelilla wax and peppermint essential oil. I love it because it’s very firm, peppermint oil makes it taste very nice and you can get a refill (2×30 metres) every time you run out of it.
Get it here: Dental floss
Plastic Tongue scraper
Yes, I do have plastic in my bathroom although I’m trying to be completely plastic-free. I’m sharing this with you to show you how you shouldn’t get rid of everything that is made of plastic in your household. The point is to reduce waste and plastic so just keep them and use them fully before tossing it out. I’ve had this tongue scraper for about 3 years now and I definitely plan on using it for at least another year or so. It’s in a really good state and I clean it once in a while with bicarbonate soda, lemon juice, and water (I just soak it in the mixture and then brush it with an old toothbrush). A tongue scraper is really important for your oral hygiene; it gets rid of bacteria that live on your tongue and in your mouth.
I am seriously obsessed with this deodorant. I have been using it for some time now (as you can see my little collection in the photo) and I absolutely love it. Before this one, I used mineral salt deo which is odourless and I quite liked it but it had plastic packaging. This one is recyclable.
All of these smell incredible, (my favourite is definitely Jasmine and Rose), and most importantly it ‘s antibacterial, no aluminium or parabens. Also, it doesn’t clog your sweat glands. In case you’re switching from commercial deodorants to this one, give yourself 2 weeks because lemme tell you, you will stink. The reason for this is that the glands in your armpits are clogged with deodorant you use and cannot flush out toxins through sweating BECAUSE antiperspirants don’t allow you to sweat how you’re supposed to. So my advice is to either do it whilst you’re on holiday or to speed up a process; make a detox mask of Bentonite clay and water to draw out the chemicals from the skin so your armpits can breathe again. Do you see what kind of crap they put in your products now?
Find it here: Deodorant
I still use the same one I’ve been using for years now. And the reason is that I bought a ginormous stock of refill blades so now I’m going to use it until I’m out. You can get a double edge safety razor instead of buying and ditching your plastic one every time you’re done with it. You have to change the blade every week or so. (They are recyclable in the UK, you just have to ask your local authority how and where to recycle.)
Get it here: DE safety razor
I have to be honest with you, I tried a couple of shampoo bars and I wasn’t impressed. Well, to be completely honest I was so desperate that I decided to get back to my old bottled shampoo. So after I while, I decided to give it another go. I didn’t want to give up that easily and in the end, I did found one that suits my hair. Finally!
I heard about the new range in Holland and Barett (Ethique) and that was the one. My hair smells beautiful, perfectly silky and that’s without conditioner. I never use conditioner as my hair is naturally thin and silky. So I would usually end up looking like a wet dog. Yeah, not nice at all. I would recommend trying a couple of different brands and just deciding which suits you best. I will link the Ethique and the previous one I tried.
Body wash bar/shaving soap + a plastic bottle that I refill
In case you are trying to save some pennies, you can use a hand soap bar for washing your body. If not, there are plenty of brands now that make beautiful body soaps which moisturise your skin and make it smell amazing. I am currently trying out the detox bar from brand Friendly (the same as my hand soap)
For shaving, I use the same soap I clean my body with and it works pretty well for me. You can, of course, find some good shaving soap bars if needed. It’s just important your skin is slippery so the razor can glide on your skin and moisturise it later.
You are probably wondering what the feck is this plastic bottle doing in my bathroom if I use soaps. I refill the bottle with shower gel at my local zero waste shop, usually for my family and friends that come to mine for a visit. As no one would like to share the same soap with other people, right? 😛
Home-made makeup remover
I was using coconut oil for removing my makeup until I discovered that I can make my own mixture. (Mind-blowing, I know) 😛 . I use sweet almond oil (100-150ml) and add 10-15 drops of tea tree essential oil. Of course, options are endless so you can add whichever base oil you want and whichever essential oil you prefer. Just bear in mind if you’re switching from a commercial makeup remover to oils, be prepared for your skin to go bananas. Mine went from oily, to super dry to acne-all-over-my-face to normal. I’m not a dermatologist but I assume it’s a huge shock for your skin to be soaking up all those chemicals for years and all of a sudden change it to natural “stuff”. Give it a go and try what oil (if any) works best for you. (I’ve got the bottle on Amazon).
Reusable Bamboo/cotton make-up pads
I’m chuffed to bits with this one. It’s deffo my favourite investment with bathroom swaps. I don’t have to spend money on cotton pads anymore. These are super soft and gentle to your skin, washable in a washing machine and you get a wash bag with your purchase. Win-win.
Get it here: Make-up pads
Face and body moisturiser
I’m still experimenting with face moisturisers as I’m trying to make my own so I will update you about that when I find the perfect mix. For the body, I’m using coconut oil or sweet almond oil mixed with a few drops of lavender essential oil.
Cotton and bamboo ear buds
Nothing exciting here but still useful to know.
I hope you remember that disturbing image of a seahorse swimming with a discarded cotton bud so save seahorses if nothing else. Also, I think you can get these in any shops like Boots or Superdrug now.
In case you want to get it online: Cotton buds
This one is yet to be tried. Still waiting for that glorious British summer. Btw, it is a bit pricey so I hope it’s going to be worth it.
This is the one I’ve got: Sunscreen
After months and months of battling with menstrual cups, I have finally found “The One”. It’s tricky and I cannot recommend any as every vagina is different and there’s no one size fits all. You will need to do some research which one would suit you best and just give it a go. There are different shapes, different sizes, and different softness, or shall I say, flexibility. But I can tell you one thing, do not give up.
This is the best time to try it out and practice when you are at home, comfy, and safe. It could be messy at the beginning until you don’t get used to it but as I mentioned previously, it is definitely worth it.
It has a 12-hour capacity which equals 3-4 tampons. Yes, that means you don’t have to worry about it the whole day. (Of course, it depends on your flow but still, it’s awesome). You can also wear it at night, you’ll be safe and sound. Aaaand, It can last up to 10 years. Whaaa? So, just imagine how much waste you can reduce and the money you can save from one menstrual cup in 10 years’ time. It’s completely safe and easy to clean. During the use, just wash it in hot water. To sanitize it before your next period, you can place it in a pot of boiling water and boil it as instructed by the manufacturer. (This sounds like I’m instructing you how to cook pasta :P)
So, how is your experience with the menstrual cup and what do you think about it?
There are also cotton sanitary pads, biodegradable and recyclable tampons and period pants that you can get, so no pressure with a menstrual cup if you don’t feel comfortable with it.
Recycled toilet paper
Isn’t this the most cheerful toilet paper you’ve ever seen? 🙂 It makes me, and anyone who enters my bathroom smile. I order it online and a pack of 48 rolls lasted for half a year. You can also subscribe and not worry about ordering it every time you run out.
Fun fact – they donate 50% (yes, FIFTY) of their profits to help build toilets for those in need. The company donated over 1 million pounds to charity and saved a lot of trees, energy and water. It’s impressive, isn’t it?
You can get it here: Who gives a crap
To finish this long post, I wanted to say it’s VERY important to use up everything you have and is still good to use. Also, if you prefer using shower gels more than a soap bar, then keep using it. Try searching for zero waste shops in your area and refill what you can. If you’re vegan, be aware of ingredients because zero waste doesn’t mean vegan. They still sell products with honey and beeswax.
One of the biggest advice I can give you is to give yourself some time to get used to all of this and be patient. You are probably very excited (at least I was) and you want to swap and get rid of all the plastic you have in your household. But that’s not the point of being zero waste. Firstly, use and reuse everything you have for as long as possible. Secondly, recycle it properly. And thirdly, start with another product. Don’t buy lots of different creams, moisturisers, or products in general every time you feel like it. I know it’s hard, especially for women, as we like to try a lot of different products and then end up buying another one because “we really need to try that one now.” I know sometimes certain products don’t work for your skin but be mindful and buy consciously.
I’m getting most of my products from andkeep.com website because it’s easier for me to just order it online and I really like the range they offer. Also, I would buy certain products from my local zero waste shop if there is something I need urgently. There are plenty of shops that you can purchase Eco-friendly and sustainable products from so do your research and start slowly. I hope I helped you with this bathroom tour and let me know if you’re using any of these products already.
This is not a sponsored post. But if you use the code “VALENTINA BALGAVI” for purchasing products on andkeep.com website you will get 15% off. Just type in the code at the checkout. I will not get paid if you use the code, I will just save money on my next order by getting a certain percentage off, the same as you.
There is an affiliate like for the menstrual cup – in case you decide to make a purchase, I will receive a small commission which will help me keep providing the content for this blog.