It’s not easy being green, especially when it comes to reducing and eliminating the plastic and unsustainable packaging found in body care, make-up and toiletry items. Even the ‘good’ chemical free, cruelty free, natural options are usually encapsulated in too much plastic.
We’ve roved our body-care shelves in order to come up with some recommendations that can help reduce our impact on the planet in a small way.
Using biodegradable and compostable toothbrushes made from natural and recycled materials is also an important way that you can reduce your plastic waste impact. Researchers have estimated that billions of plastic toothbrushes end up in landfill each year. In NZ alone, conservative estimates state that we potentially throw away 8 million plastic toothbrushes per year.
A shampoo bar can be an excellent way of reducing plastic waste. It is also generally 100% natural, free from sodium lauryl sulfate, very economical and convenient if travelling. Dr Bronner’s castille soap range also make an ideal shampoo bar, moisturising and cleansing, without stripping your hair of its natural oils. 100% organic jojoba oil massaged into your hair is a great natural conditioner, readily absorbed, nourishing and poured simply from a glass bottle.
Good old fashioned soap has somehow lost popularity and yet it is usually sustainably packaged, cost effective and nourishing for you skin when well-made and natural. Dr Bronners castille soap bars are a favoured option. We also like to recommend the traditional Syrian ‘Sabun’ Olive and Laurel soap bars, 1oo% natural, gentle, low allergenic and deeply moisturising. High quality natural options can also be found in glass packaging within the Antipodes range of facial and body cleansers.
For moisture the Weleda range of body oils are a good option. Shea butter can also be purchased in raw chunks from Wise Cicada. A bit like coconut oil, it will melt in the heat of your hand an can then be massaged into the skin.
The local range of skincare balms from Five Elements provide high quality, high efficacy tested facial moisturising options packaged in metal or glass vessels. As does much of the packaging offered by the excellent NZ Antipodes range.
Deodorants that are not packaged in plastic are hard to come by. Perhaps the best and most well known option to reach for is the crystal salt rock deodorant, tried and true, apply with a little water and it really works. The Weleda deodorant range is packaged in glass, fragrances with natural essential oils and equally effective. Products like the ‘It’s All Good’ deodorant cream range and ‘Ethique’s deodorant bars are also excellent options.
Feminine hygiene products like tampons and pads can be an area where a lot of plastic is added to our waste systems. We recommend menstrual cups as the option with the lowest impact on the environment. However they may not be everyone’s first choice, so choosing tampons and sanitary pads that are made of plastic free materials and packaged in paper are the next best choice, both for your body health and the health of the planet. We also have a range of reusable cloth sanitary pads available in store too.
You only need a few basic items to create an effective bathroom cleaning kit:
Baking soda (If you ask at the Wise Cicada counter we can supply bulk option)
Essential oils (especially the citrus and antimicrobial ones eg, orange oil, tea tree oil, lavender oil)
Vinegar (white is best)
Sugar (the granules make an excellent abrasive scrub)