The bathroom is one of the places, where I truly had a awakening moment when I first did my revision of plastic items in my environment. As I’m not a woman, who has lots of different make-ups, shower lotions, face creams/ lotions, etc., I think the transition was a bit easier. Before I started this journey, I already used soap bars, which came in carton boxes. Now, I’m even taking these soaps under a closer lens. What are the ingredients? Are they healthy for me and my hubby as well as for the environment? Using this approach I started to change the following items gradually. No, making these products is actually not as time-consuming as people think.
For my face wash I only had to purchase castor oil, as I had the other ingredient (Olive oil) already in my kitchen. At the beginning, I was kind of resistant in using oils to wash my face, but over time I have become convinced that this has been one of my favorite transitions. Having an oily skin type while living in a tropical climate is not always easy. I used a face scrub in the morning and evening not knowing the damages I was doing to my face. In the end, it actually became oilier and I needed to wipe my face with wipes quite frequently. It was quite frustrating, when you spend time going through aisles of products for oily-skin and then you achieve nothing. Its also not a very cheap option as you try different products and throw away what doesn’t work. Yes, I admit to having committed lots of plastic waste crimes in the paste in the name of beauty!
So here are some tips, which have worked for me….
Cut down on the products you use
Like I had said earlier, I have never really used lots of different creams, lotions, etc, so this process has been quite easy. Don’t start throwing everything away, but consider it a step by step process. Do you really need all the things you have in the bathroom? Is it good for you? Do you understand the ingredients you use on your skin? Check whether there are better natural options. My face wash also serves as a hair mask once a week.
Make your own products
(I found most ingredients in my kitchen). Remember that this is a learning process and some of the tips you might want to adjust to your own preferences.
Face wash: 30% Castor Oil, 70 % Olive Oil, Tee Tree Oil (optional)
Using the oil cleansing method for the past 1 year and 3 months has taught me so much more about my skin. I use it once in the morning with a hot wash cloth and that’s it. No more scrubbing, no more wiping for the rest of the day. Anyone who has oily skin knows about this. Check out the website for more details: The Oil Cleansing Method
Toothpaste: Baking Soda, Coconut Oil, Sea Salt, Peppermint essential oil (optional) Living in the country of production, we can get really good Coconut Oil locally without spending lots of money. As I am part of a Facebook group for healthy living in Bangkok, we ordered directly from the producer in bulk, so I am happy.
Baking soda can be bought in all stores, but it still comes in a plastic pouch. As I also use it for my deodorant and home cleaning products, the fact, that I use one item covered in plastic is ok for the moment, but will need to change this in the near future.
Deodorant: Cornstarch, baking soda, coconut oil, tee tree essential oil (optional) I have been using it for the past 1 months and I’m truly happy about it. Just purchased organic bees wax, so I can turn it into a stick for my husband. As everyone reacts differently to the products, my hubby couldn’t really work well with the oil part.
Mouthwash: Sea Salt and Water
Body Scrubs: There are lots of wonderful recipes online and I will share the ones with you, which have become top of my list. For example my coffee scrub has become a favorite gift item for many friends, who can’t stop raving about it after using it. I get the coffee grounds for free at a local shop, then add some sea salt and coconut oil to it…. Be careful, you will never want to change!!! The smell of coffee in the shower is simply addictive!!
Insight: Coffee beans are a good source of antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties, adding oil turns them into an incredible moisturizer.
Hair Rinse: Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, Lemon and Water
I have been using it for only a few weeks and I’m totally blown away. I didn’t believe it would get rid of my knots, which I tend to have after shampooing, but it has… Another homemade item, which will stay…. Now, I am also making my own vinegar thanks to my Kombucha Scoby cultures….
Use bar soaps for everything…
Using plant based natural soaps is not only a better choice for you and your loved ones, but also for the environment. Petroleum based soaps take a long time to biodegrade!
You can either learn to make your own or visit local farmers or other markets to buy homemade soaps. Just make sure to check whether they are plant based and free of synthetic fragrances and colors. In Bangkok there has been a rising trend for it, so enjoy the variety. I did attend a soap making workshop, but soon realized, that it was too time-intensive for me and I rather support the local economy. This could be a wonderful birthday gift as well to share with friends and family.
Struggles to date (please help and share your insights): Shampoo (I simply don’t see myself trying the No Poo method on my hair, as it is already quite delicate; Sun tan lotion (living in a tropical country, this is one of the most hazardous and chemical damages we do to our water), …..
As this is only the first guide, please stay put for other ideas/ tips. We haven’t completed the bathroom section yet, as we still have the toilet paper, feminine products, shaving cream, razors, …. But, since this is a journey and I am also a working woman, I will share once I have gained more knowledge about this.
However, I would love to hear more from you. Have you gone green in your bathroom? What have you changed? How has the transition been?