I don’t know about you but I really like having lovely toiletries in my bathroom.
I have my favourite shampoo and favourite conditioner, I have a face scrub, make up remover and separate face washes and hand washes.
All this leads to having loads of plastic bottles all over the bathroom and of course everyone else in the family wantS their own special bottles and tubs too! ..we end up with just tons of half used plastic bottles and tubs.
They all have different graphics and designs as well as costing ( sometimes in excess of £3). As well as expensive we all know that all these plastic bottle are going to end up adding to the plastic mountain we are battling at the moment.
So how can we keep the things we love and still reduce our plastic waste in the bathroom?
Well fear not!!! I figured it out… It saves money, looks tidy and actually could even be described as looking a bit posh!!!
After doing up my bathroom at the beginning of the year I decided I didn’t want all those bottles cluttering up the lovely new room. As any budget conscious parent does, I trawled through Pinterest for storage ideas and by accident found this concept.. its the best thing ever!!! ( ok I may be exaggerating a bit here)
By decanting your products into nice jars and bottles you solve all your bathroom related issues ( well mostly) .
I found some lovely pump bottles for the side of the sink and bath ( not waterproof) and some clear plastic pump bottles for inside the shower-cubical ( totally waterproof) . I spent a bit more on them so they’d last but you can get them for less than a pound. I figured if I want them to last I should buy something that was made to be reused over and over again. I spent £12 for 3 plain clear ones and a little more on some more “designed” fancy ones for the side of the sink. ( £5 each)
Nice Labelling makes a difference
I found some little blackboard labels on string to hang around the pump part of the containers and instead of using chalk pens I used a white enamel pen to write what was in each container. ( chalk pens are water soluble so not great for bathrooms)
I decanted the products into each bottle and found that everything looks so much more pretty in a clear bottle.
When I first did it I used up all the half empty bottles of products we already had. (I admit to mixing them too, I think I had four different shower gels in one bottle at one point, but it looks kind of cool!)
I was thrilled to finally finish all the bottles up and start to use something more permanent.
Brands and Cost
There are loads of recognisable brands available in larger containers. I was able to find our favourite shampoo and conditioner, shower gel and hand wash in 5ltr tubs/containers.
Yes of course they are more expensive that your normal sized bottle but when you work out how much they cost per bottle ( a normal sized container off the shelf) I found the savings were huge.
So where I was paying upto £3 for a bottle of shampoo, buying in large bulk bottles I was paying less than a pound for the same amount!
Also I found we were using so much less product!
When you use a normal bottle of product often the dispenser deposits a good old blob of product on your hand much more than you need. But when you use the pump bottle you have much more control over the amount you use.
I recon we are using less than a third of what we would before for each wash.
This means we are getting three times more use from our product.. again saving money!
If you can’t afford to buy the 5lt tub, using a normal sized bottle would still have a difference on your pocket and the amount of disposed plastic.
For every three bottles you’d use normally you’d now be using one! taking two out of the bin!!! If everyone did that.. it would have a huge affect!
Same goes for shower gel, hand wash and face wash. You can buy these in bulk sized containers. Search for hotel/pub/hairdressers/ beauticians suppliers and your find everything you need.
Don’t be afraid to use products you don’t recognise either. Many suppliers use the same products just rebranded. Hotels and spas don’t want to provide rubbish so these are still good quality.
Remove Babywipes for Make Up.
I also have two teenage girls who use huge amounts of baby wipes to remove their make up and I was sick of seeing them all over the place. I also knew the mess they cause in our sewers. ( our girls don’t flush them down the loo but they still end up in the bin.. and all over the house!)
So I thought about a way to reduce the use of wipes too. I found a litre of witch hazel on line for around £5 or you can use regular make up remover . I decanted into one of the containers and bought some facial flannels…. 10 flannels all together cost £5 from a hotel supply company. I cut in half and folded up nicely in a basket.
The girls now put the witch hazel on the flannels and use them instead of wipes, they rinse out and hang them on the radiator to dry. When they need a wash just throw them in the laundry and they come out ready to be put back in the basket.
(You could use old (or new) baby muslims for this too and even cut up cotton squares.)
I didn’t think they’d do it, but I think it makes them feel like its a more luxurious process and they’ve stuck to it. We’ve cut out all the baby wipes from the house and they didn’t even notice.
Bringing a Home Spa into your Home.
Besides the obvious money savings and cutting down of plastic waste, there is another thing too…. They look really Posh!!!! and it feels luxurious too.. it feels like you are in a hotel and thats always a good thing! I feel like I’m in a spa every time I take a shower!!!
Why removing branding revamps a room!
I read the Marie Kondo book at the beginning of the year (she’s a ‘tidying up’ guru in case you don’t know!! ) and she talked about how clearing away all the bottles and containers that have labels on helps to create a calmer environment.
She explains how we tend to ‘speed read’ everything we see without realising. By removing these products, bottle and labels, without realising, you stop reading everything and the room becomes quieter and calmer… (not to mention much tidier)
It really works!! the bathroom felt so much calmer and lovely, as well as looking a bit posher! so that was it..Im now obsessed!!
I’ve done the whole house!! everything is decanted!!! washing liquid, hand wash by the kitchen sink and even cleaning fluid for wiping down the sides… if its in a bottle.. its decanted!!
The only obstacle we had was from the teens as they complained they wanted ‘nice’ shampoo, when they realised we were still using the products we always had they soon stopped moaning.
We’ve not had a Christmas yet. everyone buys us tons and tons of smellies, I’m hoping we will still decant them to use them up but I know some of the posher ones have lovely bottles than we might want to display. I am guilty of this already and have two sneaky premium brands that I keep out in my bathroom. But I put them on the shelf and display them like ornaments! I know.. its pathetic…..
next week… teeth, toothbrushes and toothpaste! oh I can feel your excitement!!