Do you aspire to live a more eco-friendly life? In my opinion, the bathroom is a great place to start! Here are 15 things you could replace with a greener alternative. These options will allow you to waste less, but also to live a healthier lifestyle!
A small piece of advice before you implement these… start gradually!
Before I unroll my little list, I have a little advice to share…
A few years ago, when I started testing solid shampoos, safety razors and other zero waste must-haves, I had the impulse to throw everything away to start fresh.
When we embark on a greener journey, it can definitely be tempting to get rid of our less eco-friendly products and immediately replace them with greener alternatives… But doing so completely defeats the purpose!
The best thing to do is to replace your less eco-friendly items gradually, as you use up your stock. Not only will this avoid throwing away items that can still serve, but it will also increase your chances of maintaining your new habits, since the changes you make will be more gradual and natural.
So without further ado, here are 15 items you can replace for a greener bathroom!
Ecoswap #1: swap your shower gel for a soap bar
Many of us have adopted shower gel because it smells good and lathers well… But in addition to being packaged in plastic bottles, it is often filled with ingredients that are not very good either for our health or for the environment.
On the other hand, a soap bar:
- contains no preservatives
- is cheaper than most shower gels
- lasts longer than the bottled options
- requires fewer resources to be produced
- features less packaging than shower gel (some options are even available with NO packaging!)
- will never leak in your suitcase 🙂
Are you convinced yet? If so, I recommend you try a cold-saponified soap, which preserves vegetable oils and fats for gentle washing and optimal moisturizing.
Eco-swap #2: swap cotton tipped swabs for a stainless steel earwax remover tool
For years, I resisted trying out reusable ear wax cleaners… I don’t even remember why! But once I tried them, I realized they were far more effective than their disposable alternative.
In East Asia, the use of a small, curved, spoon-like ear cleaner tool has always been part of the customs. What’s the advantage of using such an object? Instead of pushing the earwax into the ear canal, the small spoon collects it and removes it more efficiently.
I personally like ones that are made with metal, like this set of 5 small instruments, available on Etsy!
Eco-swap #3 : adopt reusable makeup pads instead of disposable cotton balls
Reusable makeup remover pads are one of my favourite eco-friendly alternatives – and one of the easiest to substitute, in my opinion.
Not only are the makeup-removing wipes I use infinitely gentler on the skin than their disposable alternatives, they don’t leave any fluff residue in my eyelashes. And as an added bonus, you’ll never run out :).
After having tested a ton of facial rounds, I created a makeup pad that combined the best assets I had found, in a larger format. Here’s more information on this creation:
- The makeup pads are big – so you can remove makeup from both eyes with the same cotton pad, while enjoying a clean surface each time you wipe it over your eye (which is what eye care professionals recommend!).
- Their ample size also means you don’t need to use small nets when washing them in the laundry machine, as they’re too big to clog your washing machine’s hose.
- The cotton pads remain ultra soft despite repeated washing… I’ve had mine for two years now, and they’re still as pleasant to the touch as ever!
Eco-swap #4: go natural when it comes to hair care
Since I started aspiring to have a more eco-friendly lifestyle. But despite my strong desire to uncover THE perfect solid shampoo or conditioner, nothing was able to tame my hair. So I fell back on the large-format, refillable bottles!
Then I discovered PROSE, a company that offers hair care products that are natural and more interestingly tailor-made for our hair type, age, lifestyle and climate.
I’m pretty happy with the results so far! And I love that you can reorder the bottles without the pumps, although I would have liked to be able to order larger formats in order to order less often.
If you’re curious, the company has also implemented several initiatives to reduce its ecological footprint.
Eco-swap #5: swap your deodorant for a healthier version, offered in plastic-free packaging.
In the deodorant category, I’ve also tested a million options… Often, the deodorant would smell nice, but didn’t really work – and since I’m pretty athletic, it just did not cut it for me! And then, I found THE perfect deodorant.
I won’t keep you waiting: the one I like best by far is Routine Cream’s deodorant in a jar. Why is that? Well, because it REALLY WORKS, even though it’s not full of chemicals. What’s more, it’s sold in a small glass jar, which can be recycled until the end of times.
Here are our favourite fragrances at home:
Eco-swap #6: choose your shaving kit wisely
Personally, I don’t like safety razors at all… Even if I know that they’re super eco-friendly because they’re made of metal and you only have to change the blade regularly. Plus, there are a ton of cute options like this one on Natura Casa and this one from Eco Loco… But really, I shave my skin right off with this type of razor, so I have to reckon that they are simply not suited for me.
That being said, the eco-friendly razor that catches my eye is Preserve’s recycled plastic razor (made from recycled yogurt pots!) It’s super easy to use and available in several cool colours.
Eco-friendly shaving foam
If you like a frothy shave, you’ll certainly appreciate LusitaniaSoaps‘ shaving soap – an eco-friendly, solid and natural option that lathers superbly with a small shaving brush.
Eco-swap #7 : use recycled toilet paper – and if you’re up for it, pee wipes
If, like most of us, you use toilet paper, the best solution is to opt for recycled paper. Many of us have had unpleasant experiences with raspy, too thin and mostly uncomfortable recycled paper… But today, there’s an array of brands offering super-soft eco-friendly alternatives, like WHO GIVES A CRAP (recycled) and Betterway (bamboo).
Depending on your comfort level, you could also replace disposable toilet paper with pee wipes! As the name suggests, these small wipes can be used to wipe yourself, then washed and reused. To do this, you’ll need a system to manage clean and soiled wipes. Personally, I would recommend you use them with a bidet, as it’s much more hygienic! I tell you all about it in this article if you’re curious.
Eco-swap #8 : get a bidet attachment installed
With growing environmental concerns, the bidet is making a comeback! And a whole range of options are now available on the market, which you can simply add to your normal toilet.
The main advantage of the bidet attachment is that you can clean yourself without using toilet paper! For the more ecologically minded, you can even use a soft flannel wipe to dry yourself once you’re thoroughly clean. It’s a simple – and ultra-hygienic – green alternative.
My recommendation? TUSHY bidets – with the warm water option for added comfort.
Eco-swap #9 : prefer natural dental floss and plastic-free accessories, if needed
Nowadays, there are many brands that offer natural dental floss in plastic-free packaging, like
But that’s not all! I recently discovered a dental floss holder that has finally allowed me to stop buying the single-use dental floss I use to clean my youngest son’s teeth, and that our other kids used too!
Eco-swap #10: prefer cotton to paper when it comes to handkerchiefs
Classic paper tissues are made from bleached wood pulp. Yep, trees are cut down so that we can blow our noses every day! And, by using paper tissues, you’re relieving your nose in a chemical-laden object that quickly finds its way into the garbage can after a single use.
If you want to gradually introduce handkerchiefs into your daily routine, consider using a cotton hanky instead! For example, you could try KURT, the softest organic cotton flannel handkerchief in the whole world… I bet you’ll soon be dreaming of its softness when your nose runs!
Eco-swap #11: replace your toothbrush with an electric one.
I tested out a ton of bamboo toothbrushes when I started out on my eco-friendly journey, and while I think they are a great idea, I find there’s no better way to achieve optimal dental hygiene than with an electric toothbrush.
Although most electric toothbrushes are made of plastic, you only have to replace the tip, which generates less waste than a conventional plastic toothbrush. And there are now more eco-friendly electric toothbrushes (aside for the battery, of course).
Here are a few examples:
- Sustainable Tomorrow‘s electric toothbrush.
- Electric toothbrush heads, compatible with Philips electric toothbrushes, from Humble Co
- Silicone toothbrushes (including cute kids’ models!), by FOREO (these incredible toothbrushes charge only twice a year!)
Personally, I use the electric toothbrush on a daily basis and a manual bamboo version for travelling (lighter weight, and easier to pack!)
Eco-swap #12: opt for a wooden toilet brush
Most toilet brushes on the market are made of plastic…. And if yours is still in good condition, there’s no need to replace it just yet! But once your current brush has served you well and you’re ready to part with it, you might consider buying a wooden one (most you’ll find are made of bamboo). Not only will it look good, but you’ll avoid buying plastic!
Eco-swap #13: add a compost bin and a recycling bin next to your bathroom garbage can.
It may sound funny, but when you think about it, most of the things you throw away in the bathroom can be recycled or composted!
So adding dedicated bins to collect these items will reduce the chance of you throwing them in the garbage can, because it’s easier than going into the kitchen to put things in the right place.
I’m thinking of things like
- Your nails (compostable)
- Toilet roll cardboard (recyclable)
- Cardboard from hygiene product packaging (recyclable)
- Your dental floss (compostable if made from natural fibres)
- Hair found in your bath or shower drain (compostable)
Eco-swap #14: adopt a natural skin care routine
I’ve never been the kind of person who has a skincare routine for my face. But, this year, at the age of forty, I discovered Primally Pure‘s amazing products and became completely hooked!!!!
Since then, I’ve been allowing myself a much-appreciated self-care moment every morning and evening, which feels infinitely good and has had an undeniably positive impact on my skin in a few short months only.
Here’s my skin routine.
- Clean my face with cleansing oil
- In the shower (with cleansing oil applied): massage with gua-sha stone
- Spray on some plumping mist
- Apply a little bit of plumping serum
- Gently massage skin with the plumping cream
And during the day, I moisturize my lips occasionally with the Rose + Mint lip balm.
Eco-swap #15 : prefer reusable products for menstruation
The menstrual cup
For many years, I used a cup whose brand name I can’t even remember… it was most likely a Diva Cup.
But if you have an IUD, I highly recommend the NIXIT cup, as it has no suction effect. I recently adopted it and find it much more comfortable than any other devices I previously used! And, by becoming an ambassador for the brand (that’s how much I love the brand!!!), I was able to secure a 15% discount for you, using coupon code TSHU.
Reusable period pads
I’ve tested quite a few types of reusable period pads over the years and the main advantage I see to them is that they’re less complicated to change when you’re on the road.
I use them less these days, because I combine cup + menstrual panties and generally don’t need to change the panties too often (plus I work from home, so it’s not really an issue if I need to change during the day). But in the past, when I went to the office every day, I really appreciated washable period pads.
Here are a few brands I like
- OKO for thongs (light days)
- The ones I liked best were super soft pads I think I found on Etsy… I don’t remember which seller, but they looked like this style.
Menstrual panties (and g-strings)
Nowadays, I’ve adopted menstrual panties – so much so, in fact, that I wear the lighter ones every day.
Here are the brands I like best:
- THINX, for days with heavier flow, especially their boxer shorts.
Now, tell me: what are your fave ecoswaps? Do you have any I didn’t list above? Anything in this list inspiring you to try something new? I’d love to hear from you!