Zero Waste Bathroom Swaps
Here is my list of Bathroom zero waste swaps!
Remember: Not everyone can do everything, but everyone can do something. Take it in baby steps, use what you have first, and know that these recommended alternatives are just tools for convenience- you don't NEED to purchase these item to be zero-waste.
If you feel so inclined to purchase any of the recommended items on this page, I do receive a small commission, this makes it so I am able to keep providing free content and education. Everything I recommend I have done extensive research, personally use, or have tried at one point.
Disposable & plastic razor –> Reusable safety razor
Disposable razors consist of several different materials. That makes them a challenge for the recycling facilities, so regularly, disposable razors are not recycled. They also are tossed out quite frequently ans can be incredibly costly!
Ditch the disposables for a one time purchase safety razor, not only is it way more cost effective and eco-friendly, but it is more friendly to your skin because it get a cleaner, closer shave causing less skin irritation.
- Bamboo plants grow quickly, need little care, and don't need fertilizer or pesticides.
- Bamboo has a smaller ecological footprint compared to plastic.
- The bamboo is biodegradable — you can compost the handles of bamboo toothbrushes. (note: you first have to remove the bristles)
- Bamboo toothbrush handles can take around six months to compost (while a plastic one takes hundreds of years to only break down.)
Toothpaste tube –> Plastic-free toothpaste
Toothpaste tubes are horrible to recycle because they are made up of different types of plastic, aluminum, steel, and nylon.
That’s why you can find a toothpaste that is in more sustainable packaging like the ones recommended blow, or check out my DIY toothpaste recipe here
I recommend our ZippNada tooth powder linked above! But I know that every body is different so here are a few low waste alternatives:
2) Refillable chew tabs I think these are so neat because you can just buy the refills! Also really good for traveling.
Plastic dental floss –> Compostable floss
Conventional floss not only is packaged in plastic but it is entirely made up of waxed nylon (aka plastic) which takes an estimated 30 to 40 years to break down.
Forget that! swap it for this compostable floss that is in a 100% recyclable glass and stainless steel container and the floss its self is 100% compostable! I also love that they are a U.S companie based in Maine.
***Warning for ma vegan peeps:
This products is NOT vegan, its made with silk (an animal byproduct) and candelilla wax (a plant) for my vegans I recommend this brand
Toilet paper –> Recycled/Bamboo paper/ Family Cloth/Bidet
Here is a crappy statistic...toilet paper wipes out (no pun intended) 27,000 trees a day and worldwide almost 270,000 trees is either flushed or dumped in landfills every day. Additionally toilet paper is bleached (not good for you) and comes in plastic packaging.
Now... I recognize that everyone has different preferences and comfort levels so here are a few different alternatives:
1) Recycled paper A better option then using virgin trees, paper packaging and cardboard box
2) Bamboo paper Sustainably packaged with RECYCLED CARDBOARD boxes & cores; plastic-free tape. Bamboo is more sustainable then trees due to how fast it grows, less water and less pesticides
3) Family Cloth This is not for the faint of heart...but is worth looking into, I will definitely do a video/blog post about this topic. But there are a lot of great resources out there on the topic of family clothing. You can make your own or I recommend these super soft color coded flannel ones!
4) Bidet This is my all time favorite option! squeaky clean behind, saves money, no handling, its a win win!
Menstrual single-use products –> Menstrual cup / Reusable pads / Menstrual underwear
The average woman will spend $6,360 during their reproductive lifetime.
I have a ton of information on zero waste periods in this video here
REMINDER: Every body is unique...what works great for one doesn't mean it will work or is the best fit for all.
artwork by kondratya
Synthetic shower curtain –> Hemp/cotton shower curtain
PVC or Polyvinyl chloride posses serious threats to both human and environmental health in all aspects of its harmful lifecycle. To learn more about HOW and WHY PVC is so dangerous check out my blog post about health and plastic .
more natural materials are a great solution to this, I recommend this cotton shower liner, I like that it is a certified green businesses, made in the good'ol U.S.A. and has a tread mark cotton certification.
Plastic toilet brush –> Wooden toilet brush
This is an amazing low-waste, natural, non-plastic, and even compostable option to the traditional plastic toilet bowl brush. I never thought I would ever say this but....that is the prettiest toilet bowl bush I have ever laid eyes on...wow I have officially reached adulthood....
Synthetic hair ties –> Plastic-free & natural hair ties
Most hair ties are made from plastic-based synthetics that don’t breakdown (um hello how many times have you seen a hair tie on the ground?)
These hair ties are made from cotton and natural rubber. Meaning that these ARE biodegradable but they are quality and made to last. I also LOVE that they are fair trade!
Tissues –> Cloth handkerchiefs
Americans alone use 255,360,000,000 disposable facial tissues a year. That is a lot of precious resources such as water and power going into that.
Swap the disposable tissues for a good'ol fashioned hankie. They are soft and reusable! You can check your local thrift store or antique shop for some beautiful designs for just a basic cotton one linked above.
Plastic hairbrush –> Bamboo hairbrush
As always, use what you have first- if you have a plastic brush/comb that is still in good condition- USE IT, if yours is on its last leg and you are looking for an upgrade here is a great bamboo comb and hair brush kit
Additionally wooden brushes can be better for your hair, unlike plastic brushes that can cause hair to break more, the wooden bristles are smooth so hair will slide over reducing breakage, it also helps to distributes natural oils.
Single-use cotton rounds –> Reusable rounds
Single use cotton pads are NOT eco friendly, "but they are made from cotton so they are better right?" Nope! to produce a kilogram of cotton 20,000 liters of water is used (that's not considering the water needed to process it).
The swap? Chose reusable!
Shampoo in a plastic bottle –> Shampoo/ Conditioner bar
I have tried A LOT of shampoo bars. And the thing with shampoo bars is that you have to find one that works with your unique hair type. This is one that I am currently LOVING it leaves my hair feeling clean without being to oily or stripping it of its natural oils. 10 out of 10 would recommend, this is also locally made in Kingman AZ