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Free Your Bathroom From Single-Use Plastic With These 7 Simple Swaps

01/12/22

Author: RIISE Team

DOCUMENTED BY: @shop_baina

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Not to shame one of our favourite rooms of the house, but bathrooms really do harbour a lot of environmental chaos.

On one hand, they’re our self-care sanctuaries. On the other, they’re perpetually stuck in a single-use plastic chokehold.

While it would be near impossible to eliminate every plastic product at once, there are some simple swaps we can make. Ready to clear your basin of plastic waste?

Swap: liquid soap for a solid soap bar 

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Balance + Volume Travel Kit

SPHAERA

Documented By: @sphaera.co.nz

Swap: liquid soap for a solid soap bar 

Solid soap bars are back in a big way and if you're looking for one that will rival your favourite body wash, Sphaera is our pick.

The New Zealand soap makers use a cold process method and a combination of plant oils, butters and milks as well as fine clays and essential oils to make soaps that leave skin feeling soft and hydrated, rather than stripped and sticky. Believe us when we say, once you make the swap to a quality solid bar and kick those plastic bottles out of your shower, you’ll wonder what took you so long. 

If you're not quite ready to give up liquid soaps, Sophic's Hand & Body Cleanser is a good alternative. This gentle, everyday wash features native Australian botanicals and comes in a bottle made from recycable glass.

Swap: disposable razors for stainless steel razors

More than two billion razors and refill blades get thrown into landfill every year – which says a lot about our lust for removing body hair. It also says a lot about the impracticality of a product that can’t be easily recycled and is only really good for around three to 10 shaves before going blunt.  

Swap out your disposable for a safety or stainless steel razor. These products are plastic-free and reusable and feature a double-edged blade (so the razor can be used on both sides). You’ll still need to replace the blade but it’s more economic and creates less waste in the long run. 

Swap: bottled shampoo for a shampoo bar

Shampoo is probably one of the biggest plastic culprits in your bathroom. While these bottled products operate under the guise of recyclability, we know by now that the reality is quite different. The majority of plastic waste isn’t recycled

Cut out the middleman and just buy something completely plastic-free instead, like a shampoo bar. Not only are they waste-free, but they’re also a decluttering godsend for your shower space. Our pick is Sphaera’s range of solid bars. Not only do they rival the quality you’d expect to find in a hairdresser, but they're also free from soap, palm oil, sulphates, silicones, phthalates, parabens and artificial colours and fragrances.

Swap: pump bottle moisturiser for body oil

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Documented By: @foile_

Swap: pump bottle moisturiser for body oil

If you want soft, hydrated skin without the piles of plastic packaging, swap your bottle of moisturiser for a refillable body oil like Foile's Coconut Body Oil. Coconut oil has excellent hydrating properties and this one is sold in a beautiful glass bottle that you can keep and refill infinitely.

Another favourite is Gracious Minds's Velvet Rose Botanical Beauty Oil. Packaged in a recycable glass bottle, this luxurious body oil is packed with plant extracts to deeply hydrate and nourish skin. Key ingredients include cacay oil to improve skin elasticity and watermelon oil and rosehip oil to hydrate and nourish skin.

Swap: regular cotton towel for a certified organic cotton towel

You probably already own a few cotton towels but if you want to take things up a notch, make your next buy a towel made from certified organic cotton.

Antipodean brand BAINA have an excellent range of luxurious bath towels, hand towels and face washers, all of which are made from soft but sturdy GOTS certified organic cotton. It also helps that the brand's designs are easy on the eye, with beautiful muted shades and geometric patterns to choose from.

We also love Australian textiles brand købn for aesthetically pleasing bathroom pieces. Inspired by Danish design, its colourful towels are reversible, with one side featuring a plush terry weave and the other an absorbent plain weave. Certified by Made In Green, the towels are made from traceable materials like organic cotton and linen and are produced in a family-run mill in Turkey.

Swap: hairbrush for a hair comb made from alternative materials

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Documented By: Gracious Minds

Swap: hairbrush for a hair comb made from alternative materials

What does rosewood, plastic and boar hair have in common? They’re all popular materials found in hairbrushes. Yep, the handle of your brush is most likely made from ebony, rosewood, ABS plastic or polyacetal, and the bristles are most likely made from nylon, boar bristle, horsehair or goat hair.  

If this sounds like a mix of materials you don’t want in your hair routine, swap for Gracious Minds’s Earth Comb. This beautiful hair tool is made from plant-based acetate, a material that stimulates the scalp and gently massages the head as you brush. With wide teeth, this comb carefully removes knots and tangles with minimal breakage and split ends. 

Swap: regular toilet paper for recycled or bamboo toilet paper  

Toilet paper. It's one of those products you probably don’t think about that much (unless you've just run out). But this everyday essential has quite the environmental impact.

Toilet paper is responsible for 15 per cent of the world’s deforestation, including the destruction of ancient forests in places like Canada. A few seconds of pillowy softness definitely doesn’t feel worth that much environmental damage, so swap store-bought, plastic-wrapped paper rolls for recycled or bamboo rolls.

Crowd favourite Who Gives A Crap offers both options with a convenient subscription service. It also donates 50 per cent of profits to help build toilets for disadvantaged communities. Reel Paper is on a similar mission, offering bamboo-based, biodegradable paper and providing access to clean toilets with every purchase.   

Of course, there is another option that involves no toilet paper at all: a bidet. But we’ll leave that decision with you.

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