One expression you hear a lot these days is ‘be the change you want to see.’ And nowhere is that truer than with living a zero waste home lifestyle. Most of the waste that pollutes our planet is there as a result of our actions. As difficult as it might be to hear, we contribute to this problem with our behavior alone, and if we apply even the most minimal of changes, we can make a difference.
Such changes start from our homes, so let’s focus on one room where going zero waste can greatly benefit your health and wellbeing — the bathroom. In this article, we will go over several different ways in which your bathroom can be nearly zero waste. We stress the ‘nearly’ part, however, since the goal isn’t to go completely zero waste, but to reduce waste as much as possible.
THE ZERO WASTE BATHROOM ELEMENTS
These are the items most people can seamlessly switch to zero waste in the bathroom.
Taking a bath the zero waste way can be fun and soothing. All you need to know is how to find the all-natural products that suit you best. You might be surprised by how much you like all-natural, plastic-free shampoo and conditioner bars. Or you can make your own shampoo out of natural ingredients.
Of course, the zero waste hygiene regimen doesn’t stop at shampoos and conditioners. If you want everyday skincare, you will need a good natural soap. Luckily, there are plenty of them on the market, and naturally (some pun intended), you can make your own liquid hand soap or bar.
Another impactful way to reduce your monthly waste is to switch to a menstrual cup or choose reusable pads or period underwear.
Your teeth still require a lot of care, and it might seem like the only real option is to get a pricy toothpaste with all the powerful chemicals. But buying one will result in cardboard and tube waste. Furthermore, you’re not really buying an all-natural product.
As a zero waste homeowner, you will want to switch to sustainable toothpaste with 0% plastic ingredients. Even the package is reusable, as the paste comes in a glass jar. Of course, experts are still a bit divided when it comes to the effectiveness of all-natural toothpaste. So, if you still have your doubts, you can always try one of many natural toothpaste alternatives out there.
Naturally, a zero waste toothpaste needs to go hand-in-hand with a good zero waste toothbrush. That way you eliminate all plastic and freely recycle every single piece of your dental hygiene menagerie.
And speaking of dental hygiene, no menagerie would be complete without zero waste dental floss. Not only is this floss a healthier alternative to most popular brands out there, but it’s eco-friendly to the very core. You can recycle or compost the floss after you are done giving your teeth a good cleaning.
Makeup + Beauty Products
Beauty products typically contain a lot of harmful materials. Fortunately, there are plenty of consumers out there who want to both look their best and save the planet. That’s why you can find so many amazing DIY makeup recipes online that cater to the eco-friendly beauty enthusiast.
Of course, you can always find green manufacturers that happily produce makeup that is plastic-free and contains no harmful ingredients. You can find anything from lip balms to foundations. In fact, by purchasing these products, you’ll be helping the ecological cause in another crucial way. Nearly all zero waste makeup products are made cruelty-free. Not a single one of them has been tested on animals.
Both men and women can benefit from using a plastic-free stainless steel safety razor. All you have to do is replace the blades from time to time. Luckily, you can easily find recyclable steel blades that go with almost any brand of razor out there.
SUSTAINABLE BUT NOT ZERO WASTE BATHROOM ITEMS
These are the reasons we called this the almost zero waste bathroom.
Right now, there are a lot of recycled toilet paper options on the market which the zero waste crowd uses. And indeed, the sentiment behind the idea works; buy recycled paper and save lots of trees in the process. However, our nether regions can be quite sensitive. And truth be told, a lot of recycled toilet paper out there simply isn’t that safe. So, until a completely safe alternative can be found, we suggest that you still stick to regular toilet paper. Alternatively, you can use a bidet and a small washable towel as a healthy, waste-free alternative.
Of course, you can still reduce the amount of waste you make with regular toilet paper if you shop smart. For example, try to buy it in bulk and have plenty available. By buying in bulk, you will reduce the amount of plastic packaging that ends up in the landfill.
Yes, there are both eco-friendly deodorants and eco-friendly Eau de Toilette out there. In fact, some of them cost far less than the popular brands and offer the same amount of protection.
However, they can come with drawbacks. Many eco-friendly deodorants are not that great for people with sensitive skin. Hopefully, in the future, all brands will offer a product or two specifically catering to people with skin issues. But right now, a lot of eco-friendly brands simply don’t have that option.
In other words, if going green harms you directly in any way, don’t force it. However, with some digging, you might find what you’re looking for. Just be sure to read user reviews first, to avoid unpleasant surprises.
The Bottom Line
As you can see, it won’t always be possible to go zero waste. However, even the smallest steps can lead to huge, positive changes. Hopefully, this article has shown you how you can start living a zero waste lifestyle and maintain your bathroom as waste-free as possible.
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My favorite suggestion in this article is a bidet! Even my husband has become a “believer”. It was fantastic postpartum and honestly I feel Americans are just dirty for not making a bidet as commonplace as it should be here in the States. I LOVE ours!!!