5 Steps To Less Waste In The Bathroom
Space is generally at a premium in the bathroom. Yet considerable waste can be generated in what is typically the smallest room in the house. We have set out five steps to help reduce waste.
According to “Zero Waste Europe”, the global cosmetic industry produces 120 billion packaging items every year. 120 billion packaging items. That’s a lot. Much of this packaging floats about in our bathrooms before finally making its way into the ocean. And the reason for this – synthetic plastic does not biodegrade, rather disintegrates into increasingly smaller parts. The resulting microplastics as they are known then end up in our environment through wastewater.
The topic of waste reduction is a complex one. We are focusing today on practical ways to produce less waste. Making the bathroom more sustainable does not have to happen all at once. The environment will also be thankful for small steps. And the easier the steps, the greater the likelihood you will stay on track.
Would you like to reduce the amount of waste in your bathroom? Let’s get started so:
Step 1: Use up all products
Waste reduction does not mean going through the house and discarding all “offending” products and replacing them with more sustainable ones. Let’s take an example: If we were to throw away the still functional electric toothbrush and replace it with a bamboo toothbrush, we would be wasting valuable resources. The first step towards a more sustainable bathroom therefore is: use the products you already have until they no longer work or are depleted.
Step 2: Reduce the number of products
Seven nail varnishes, five lipsticks, three deodorants … stop! While you are using up your products, you can think about your consumer habits: Do you really need all the hygiene and cosmetic products you buy? Which do you actually use every day? You will quickly notice that you do not need some products at all. Use them up and do not buy them again. Refocus on the essential. This will also be consistent with the continuing interior trend towards minimalism.
Tip: More-in-1 products reduce the number of products considerably. Take soaps, for example, which can be used for different purposes:
- For washing hands
- For showering
- For washing hair or
- For shaving
Step 3: Avoid plastics
This step is broken down into two stages: content and packaging.
Toothpaste, shower gel, face cream, shampoo: Check the ingredients in your products. Are there are microplastics in there? Replace these with certified natural cosmetics, because their ingredients are essentially free from plastics.
Tip: Apps like “Codecheck” will make shopping simpler. Briefly scan the barcode and the app will immediately tell you whether the product is harmless.
Once you have addressed the topic of content, you can turn to the packaging. Which of your products could you get in loose form? Are there plastic-free alternatives? Two examples show how simple the switch can actually be:
- Many chemist’s shops carry cotton buds with environmentally-friendly paper stems – no plastic sticks whatsoever.
Step 4: Reusable alternatives
Cotton wool pads, wipes … these are all things that end up in the bin after a single use. Why not switch to reusable products instead: apart from classic flannels, microfibre cloths are also ideal for daily personal hygiene. They are so effective that even make-up removers can be dispensed with fully. You can also turn your back on cotton wool pads, with washable alternatives made from cotton available in any chemist’s shop. Do you like to be creative? You can easily make your own washable pads. All you need are a couple of fabric remnants and some towels you no longer use.
Step 5: Do it yourself!
Making your own make-up remover pads brings us to the topic of DIY cosmetics. Whether deodorant, dry shampoo or soap: you will find lots of instructions online for making your own cosmetics. You can then store your homemade products in decorative reusable glass jars and bottles.
Which other suggestions do you have for producing less waste? We look forward to hearing from you.
PS: Refer to the following article to find out about reducing plastics in the rest of the home: “Living better with less plastic”.