What’s the big problem?
Your bathroom is typically the second most wasteful room in your house (after the kitchen)
Over 30 million toothbrushes are disposed of each year in Australia – contributing approximately 1,000 tonnes of landfill annually.
Yet again, the main waste culprits here are plastic-based.
From the bottles of shampoo, conditioner and soap lining your shower, to bags of cosmetics, tubes of toothpaste, female sanitary items and single-use face wipes, it’s easy to forget how much plastic and packaging we consume (and then throw away) in our bathrooms.
What can you do?
- Recycle more
Bathroom products are commonly incorrectly discarded. Give your shampoo, conditioner and body wash bottles a quick rinse, ensure they are clean and pop them in your yellow topped recycling bin.
- Investigate alternative recycling schemes
Terracycle and a number of brands run recycling programs for those difficult-to-recycle items like toothbrushes, toothpaste and cosmetic containers.
- Buy less
Consider whether you really need that new hair or beauty product in the first place. If not, leave it on the shelf.
- Buy differently
Switch small bottles for bigger ones that will last longer, top-up in bulk stores if you can, replace bottles with bars of soap and single use shavers for reusable ones. You can also explore the new wave of feminine hygiene products available and learn to love your wash cloth again. You might find you save money in the long run too!
- Change the way you clean
Low-impact cleaning is also important as it creates less waste during production, in your home and then as it enters WA’s water supply. Bicarb soda, lemons and vinegar are cheap, easy to find and have been championed for years as effective cleaners - AND they are low waste too. It’s a win-win!
- Make your own
If you feel adventurous there’s a wealth of recipes online for low-waste shampoo, conditioner and soap options on the internet. Check out our Further Reading section for pointers on what’s out there.