Your Guide To A Zero Waste Bathroom
Modern bathrooms are known to generate too much waste. Our bathrooms are the home to our impulse buys that include a plethora of disposables and consumables. We bring a lot of single-use items for our bathrooms without paying any heed to how damaging they can be to the environment.
Have you ever done a bathroom clean-up? You sure have. Then you would definitely know what we are talking about. Are you worried about the footprint you are leaving with just your bathroom? Are you planning on moving towards a zero-waste lifestyle slowly but surely? Well, here we are with our exceptional ideas, tips, and tricks for your journey towards a zero-waste bathroom. Are you ready to roll? Let’s do this:
Setting up the bathroom bins
First things first, let’s sort the waste we create in our bathroom into two categories: compost and recycling. Bring in two containers to your bathroom and set them up, one for recycling and the other for compost. You can line them up with compostable bags so that handling the compost bin remains easy.
Install two small bins in your bathroom. One’s for your compost and the others for recycling. They don’t have to be fancy: any containers will do. Use a dedicated compostable bag to line the compost bin to keep things manageable.
Add everything organic to this bin ranging from cotton products to bamboo, wood, nail clippings, your hair, tissues, and compostable packaging. Most of these items will never compost in the home environment. Look around for a composting system in your community and send your bathroom compost there regularly.
Add everything hard from plastic to paper to metal, and everything in between to the recycle bin. You must keep all the materials separate. For instance, you can’t keep your plastic toothbrush and its cardboard packaging and send it to the same recycling cycle. This becomes particularly tricky with bottles and pumps, which contain little springy parts with plastic. You will have to look up ways on how to recycle such products.
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Make a resolution not to buy any non-biodegradable products anymore.
Next, make it a resolution to not buy any new products that have anything in them which would not end up in these bins and may contribute to increasing your footprint. Don’t go for any product that comes in the scrunchie packaging, or you will have to set up a separate bin for these plastics.
Check your bathroom supplies. If you find something that is about to end, don’t just throw it away. Think about using its packaging in a useful way. Or maybe go for a different brand this time that offers refills and is sustainable.
However, keep one thing in mind that transitioning to a zero-waste bathroom will take some time as you can’t reduce your waste to zero over the night. Here are a few tips in our zero waste bathroom guide that can help you along the journey:
- Try to find a DIY recipe for the products that are ending. You can easily source the ingredients, and this option is mostly the cheapest. However, it does require time and effort on your part if you can commit.
- You can look for a “zero waste store near me” and browse it for bulk products. You can take along your empty jars and containers to get them refilled. The bulk products and the refills are much cheaper as compared to the new products. The process may be a bit time consuming, but worth it all for the satisfaction it brings.
- Research and find an alternative product that comes in sustainable packaging. This may be a bit expensive option but is easy and quick to find.
- Lastly, if you wish to use the same product, make sure you go to every length to get its packaging recycled by taking its components apart properly.
Try to gradually get rid of the dental care products that are made from plastic and aren’t compostable. Here are a few ideas:
- Dental floss and toothpicks: the traditional floss is made from nylon, which can’t be composted or recycled. You can now get its eco-friendly versions like zero waste corn floss. Or you can go for Piksters that are reusable cleaners for cleaning your teeth and everything in between.
- Toothbrushes: replace your regular toothbrush with a bamboo toothbrush so that it is compostable. However, since the bristles aren’t compostable, make sure to remove the bristles before composting the bamboo handle. If you are into electric brushes, ensure that you just have to replace its head each time. Make sure to use the brush for cleaning purposes around the house before disposing of them finally.
- Toothpaste: toothpaste tubes can only be recycled through the Terracycle program and must be cleaned and dried completely before recycling. You can go for alternative products like toothpaste powder or tablets to get the tubes completely out of your system. DIY toothpaste is the guaranteed zero waste toothpaste that is not only cost-effective but also customizable.
- Get your mouthwash in a glass bottle, or go for the DIY mouthwashes.
Here’s how you must go about your hair care plan in a sustainable way:
- Zero waste shampoo and conditioner: invest in the largest jars of shampoos and conditioners and get them refilled each time. The shampoo bar and conditioner bar are zero-waste swaps that are great for both home use and traveling.
- When it comes to styling products, a bamboo hairbrush is the one you should seek. Make sure to store your bamboo brush in a dry place to avoid it from becoming moldy and ensure its longevity. Stainless steel combs are also a good option if you need something more durable.
- Get your hairsprays and gels in the largest possible packaging and go for glass containers if possible. Or again, you could indulge in some DIY styling products.
Here are a few tips to go zero waste when it comes to your skincare:
- Choose your lip balms, moisturizers, and hydration oils that come in glass containers that are reusable.
- Go for the toner like the Witch Hazel that you can use in various DIY recipes. Get yourself some clay face masks in a reusable jar to ensure your skin is taken care of with sustainable products.
- The zero-waste Bar soap is great, particularly the unwrapped ones. If you use liquid soap, ensure to get it in a reusable bottle that you can fill up with your liquid whenever it ends.
- Invest in compostable body scrubbers. You can easily get your hands on plant-based loofahs that can be composted once they are no longer usable. You can make your own DIY exfoliators using sugar and coffee grounds.
- Take some Epsom salts and a few drops of your favorite essential oil to create your own bath salts and bath bombs the zero waste way.
Zero waste bathroom swaps
Choose a company that brings you zero waste Band-Aids and compostable plasters made from bamboo. Replace your regular cotton swabs with bamboo ones, which are easily compostable and now available in most organic stores. Another great alternative for cleaning your ears is the reusable ear cleaner.
Here we bring you the ultimate hacks for going zero waste when it comes to hair removal:
- When it comes to the razor, you have various options. First, the disposable ones. You can get them recycled through Terracycle but never attempt to take them apart on your own. Then comes the safety razor; you can get its bamboo version or stainless steel safety razor and start practicing with it, and soon all your fears will disappear as it functions great. Electric razors are also a good option if you use rechargeable batteries. However, make sure to buy a quality one so that you don’t have to think about the various parts for recycling in case it breaks.
- Shaving soap bars are the new rage in the zero waste world that serves as the best alternative for shaving creams. Make sure to get yourself the aftershave balms and lotions in glass jars that are reusable.
- If you like to wax that hair away, you have plenty of zero waste options in the market. You can get wax kits that come with organic and food-grade wax in glass jars, along with washable and reusable strips for waxing.
Do you love makeup but don’t want to increase your footprint by finishing bottles and tubes of products, here’s how to go zero waste, according to this bathroom guide, with your makeup:
- Makeup containers are very difficult to recycle. So buy your makeup mindfully. Go for the sustainable alternatives like bamboo makeup. Many brands offer their makeup in bamboo and glass packaging.
- Invest in reusable cotton facial bath towels and rounds that you can simply wash after every use. Just put a little coconut oil or your DIY makeup remover on these rounds and remove your makeup easily.
- When choosing makeup brushes and tools, go for recycled products with natural handles like bamboo to reduce the waste.
Deodorant and perfume
Here are a few ideas to smell great while reducing your waste:
- Choose the crystal sticks that come in cork packaging, which is compostable. Or go for the glass containers instead of the aerosol sprays, or else you will have to take them apart for recycling.
- Replace your perfume with essential oils. Or go for perfume bars, splashes, and body oils that come in refillable bottles.
Get your menstrual essentials sorted the zero-waste way:
- Go for menstrual cups as they are cost-effective compared to underwear as well as pads and are made from silicone, which is non-toxic and can be sent to landfill. Or you can get menstrual cups made from latex that is compostable.
- Another option is the washable pads that you can wash and reuse to reduce your waste every month.
And last but not least, here’s how to make your toilet less wasteful through this zero waste bathroom guide:
- Toilet paper is really unavoidable and is a great product since it is made from recycled paper. So you must buy it in boxes as much as you need just avoid the plastic wrapping.
- You can go for reusable and washable toilet wipes. Or even use the old fabric as your toilet wipes, to be honest!
- Make your own toilet spray in an empty spray bottle using your favorite essential oil and mixing it with water. Just a few drops of the essential oil. Your toilet will always smell great.
- Invest in an eco-friendly toilet brush. What you can do is choose one made with natural materials while using your old stand. You can go for coconut fiber, which is not only long-lasting but also antibacterial and antifungal. Plus, it is compostable.
- Also, invest in a low-flow faucet aerator and water-saving low-flow shower-head to make sure you don’t waste any extra water in your bathroom.
- Get eco-friendly shower curtains. And go for natural materials for towels, robes, and bath mats.
- When it comes to the bathroom cleansing liquids and powders, get the largest container and refill it every time. You can also lookup some DIY recipes and make your own cleansers.
So, here you go! The guide to a zero-waste bathroom will help you become minimal in your bathroom with a lot of DIYs and reduced products. If you have too many products in your bathroom right now, don’t fret or throw them all away. Start planning and move slowly towards your zero waste living. When you become mindful of your waste, you will automatically stop yourself from splurging on unwanted products.
We hope these ideas will prove an inspiration in your zero waste living! Let us know of your feedback and ideas in the comments, and we would love to add them in! Sign up today to get a free copy of our E-book: “Guide To A Zero Waste Bathroom.”