How to Implement a Zero-Waste Bathroom

by Megan Kioulafofski
zero-waste bathroom products

The bathroom, one of the smallest parts of your home, is actually the one that creates the most waste. Think about your morning routine alone, and all the products you’ve tried that have failed and end up in the “bathroom graveyard”.

So, now you see why waste reduction is critical. This tiny room ejects a pile of plastic continually. And that realization should be enough to motivate you to implement a zero-waste bathroom.

Indeed, leading a zero-waste lifestyle is challenging. What is more, the initial enthusiasm often gets stomped by the frustration only days later. However, going zero-waste is possible. All you need to do is decide to make more sustainable choices. And one of them is reducing the waste you create. 

Begin by something simple like getting reusable shopping bags and work from there. Any time is the right time to make the change. But if you are moving into a new home, it is a perfect opportunity for a fresh start and some new habits.

Thus, after you have made sure to have a green process while moving, it’s time to learn how to be more environmentally conscious in your new home. This article will show you how to do it in your bathroom, what products to choose, and possibly entice you to implement more eco-friendly habits into your life.

Switch to bamboo brushes

You may be surprised to hear that your tiny little toothbrush is one of the biggest plastic polluters. The first brush you ever used as a kid is still polluting our oceans and poisoning marine life. 

Luckily, there is a much better alternative for your zero-waste bathroom- bamboo toothbrushes. Not only are they substantially more environmentally friendly as bamboo is one of the most sustainable crops in the world, but they are also much more stylish.

Plastic toothbrushes, dental floss, and mouthwash are all very necessary products in your bathroom. But they are also great polluters. So, switch to more sustainable options. 

eco-friendly bathroom products

When the time to dispose of them comes, make sure to remove the bristles as they are typically not biodegradable. Although, you may be able to find ones with plant fibers in the bristles as well.

Stop using disposable razors

Right after the toothbrushes, the next great polluter is disposable razors. Yes, even the ones with replaceable cartridges. They are still plastic and come packed in more of the plastic. So, if you are trying to turn your bathroom zero-waste, ditch them. Despite what you may think, disposable razors are the easiest things to discard from your life because you have a few alternatives.

Firstly, you can switch to a stainless-steel razor. Admittedly, it looks pretty unappealing and even a bit dangerous, but these razors are actually very safe and easy to use. Moreover, good quality ones can last you a lifetime. 

Next, you can use an electric razor or an electric epilator. Perhaps the result with the electric razor won’t be the same as they usually don’t get so close to the skin, but you will reduce waste from these products to a minimum. 

Finally, you can invest in laser hair removal. It is pretty costly, but it will also save you a lot of trouble.

Switch to bamboo cotton swabs

Another single-use product that you regularly use in the bathroom and is thus a dangerous polluter is a plastic cotton swab. If you are trying to go zero-waste, you need to know that cotton swabs cannot be recycled, so they all end up in landfills and oceans, where they take centuries to disintegrate. They are so harmful to the environment and the sea animals that some countries forbid their use.

Whenever possible, try to find biodegradable products to replace ones made of plastic. For instance, buy bamboo cotton swabs and replace your plastic hairbrush with a bamboo one. 

sustainable bathroom products

Whenever possible, try to find biodegradable products to replace ones made of plastic. For instance, buy bamboo cotton swabs and replace your plastic hairbrush with a bamboo one. 

However, you can make an easy switch to practically the same thing but better as it’s made of bamboo and is thus biodegradable. And the reason we say “practically the same” is that bamboo cotton swabs are actually better for you as well. Their thinner heads allow for a better clean as they will not push ear wax deeper into your ear, causing all sorts of issues.

Start using zero-waste cotton pads

If you are reading this article, it probably means you are introducing more sustainable habits into your lifestyle. Before you have decided to learn how to implement a zero-waste bathroom, you may have read an article or two about sustainable fashion. So, while you were reading, you might have learned that tremendous amounts of water are necessary to produce cotton. So, try to reduce your usage by opting for reusable cloth pads. You can buy them or make them yourself, which is an even better and greener option. You probably have some old cotton pieces of clothing you can use for this purpose. Unlike disposable cotton pads, you can wash these many times in your laundry machine.

Alter your skincare habits

The skincare industry is probably one of the most significant plastic waste culprits. While there have been more sustainable options recently, many plastic containers still end up in landfills and oceans.

So, after you have switched to reusable makeup remover pads, you could also stop buying a makeup remover and use coconut oil instead. If you have very dry skin, you can also use coconut oil as a moisturizer, and you can definitely use it as a body lotion. Coconut oil comes in a glass container, and you can buy it in bulk. In addition to coconut oil, you can start making your own skincare using shea butter, beeswax, and various essential oils.

Implement a zero-waste bathroom with eco-friendlier hygienic products

Especially now, when we are battling a global pandemic, we understand the importance of frequent hand washing. However, most soaps have harmful ingredients such as sulfates and parabens, and they come wrapped in plastic packaging. So, it’s necessary to find better alternatives. 

zero-waste bathroom accessories

We must use soaps, but we should find biodegradable packaging or brands that sell refills. 

Luckily, if you do some research, you can find more sustainable brands that sell hygienic products that check all the boxes. They should be cruelty-free, vegan, baby-safe, and of course, zero-waste. Find brands that sell refills if you like liquid soap. But if you are more of a soap bar person, choose those in biodegradable packaging without microplastics and dangerous chemicals. 

And, if possible, try to use multipurpose soap. One you can use both for your hands, face, and body. 

Finally, switch to natural cleaning products for your home as well. There are homemade solutions, and many green store-bought options.

A few more considerations

Of course, there are many more ways to implement a zero-waste bathroom in your home as there are so many more eco-friendly products you use, and they are all great sources of plastic waste

For instance, try to use plant-derived or silk dental floss instead of polyester. Also, if you plan a bathroom renovation, consider installing a bidet attachment. It will reduce your toilet paper usage by about 60%. 

Instead of purchasing a bottle of mouthwash, find a recipe for a homemade alternative online. And you can do the same with your hair conditioner. Some of these tips will take you a bit more time and effort, but it won’t be a burden once you get the hang of it. Also, our planet will be thankful, and you will be rewarded with a feeling of contentment because you are making a change. 

If you enjoyed this article and are ready to start on your zero waste journey, you might also be interested in:

Jenna Dawson is a freelance writer focusing on the environment and eco-friendly solutions that help us lead greener lives. She loves sharing tips on how to be more sustainable and help the planet heal. In her free time, Jenna volunteers in an animal shelter and upcycles items others would discard.

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