Our Essentials For A Plastic-Free Beauty Routine
Skip The Plastics For Bath & Body
Over 300 million tons of plastic produced globally each year, and only 90% of it is recycled; leaving much of it to escape our trash cans, clog waterways and fill up our natural world. Our bath and beauty routines are often filled with single-use plastics that do not biodegrade, but the good news is that it’s simpler than ever to swap out disposable items for plastic-free alternatives in your space.
Below are our favorite essentials for transitioning towards a zero-waste bathroom, minimizing waste and building a plastic-free bath and beauty routine.
Of your curious for more, check out our guide to plastic-free kitchen essentials as well!
1. Silk Dental Floss
Spend an afternoon at a beach cleanup and you’ll likely encounter tens and hundreds of handheld, single-use flossers. Switch over to Silk Dental Floss like one from Dental Lace. It’s made of compostable silk with a mint-flavored wax coating that comes in a refillable glass container with a stainless steel cap, making it 100% sustainable. Dental Lace is a woman-owned company to boot!
2. Bamboo or Recyclable Toothbrush
While I favor a bamboo toothbrush for its cardboard packaging and ability to biodegrade, many people prefer a recyclable toothbrush like one from Preserve. Whichever you choose, know that diverting a product from landfills is always a win.
3. Plastic-Free Soap
Purchasing soaps wrapped in plastic might very well be a force of habit, so during the next restock be mindful of your choice. Many stores offer handmade soaps without a plastic wrap or just a paper bag/box that can be recycled. For a travel-friendly container, use a stainless steel case to really minimize waste. Meow Meow Tweet offers amazing bar soaps in cardboard boxes!
4. Sugar Scrub
Plastic microbeads are some of the most harmful forms of plastic pollution in our everyday life and our oceans. Trade in a face wash that contains microbeads for one a sugar scrub instead. Indie Lee’s Coconut Citrus Body Scrub is a great one for all-over smooth skin.
5. Menstrual Supplies
I’ll be candid here: when I realized the enormous amount of plastic piling up in my trash during every menstrual cycle, I was shocked. After switching over to a safe and reusable silicone menstrual cup (I use the DivaCup now) and Thinx panties, the waste was completely eliminated. This is an adjustment for sure but one I highly recommend making.
6. Stainless Steel Razors
A plastic-free bath and beauty routine isn’t complete without a stainless steel razor. It might seem slightly intimidating at first, but use with care as you would any safety razor and enjoy the long shelf-life of this product. Plus, it looks beautiful on your counter and is easy to find in many beauty stores.
7. Multipurpose Makeup
Plastic-encased makeup that gets tossed every few months isn’t exactly a sustainable approach to a conscious beauty routine. Use environmentally-safe products that come in a glass container (it can be recycled or repurposed) that are multipurpose for a one-two punch. Think: Lip2Cheek by RMS Beauty, Beam Glimmer by Fat & the Moon, and pencils that work for both eyes and brows.
8. Shampoo Bar
Ditch the plastic bottle and switch to a bar! It’s a *gasp* moment for hair care devotees, I know, but there are so many eco-friendly options out there that you’re sure to find a product you love. Not only is this a plastic-free bathroom essential they’re also known to outlast standard shampoos. Check out Ethique’s nourishing Solid Shampoo Bar, “Frizz Wrangler” or the impressive selection of shampoo bars from Chagrin Valley.
9. Plastic-Free Toilet Paper
An everyday essential, conventional toilet paper often comes wrapped in at least one layer of plastic. Look for TP that’s made from eco-friendly materials like recycled paper or bamboo to make your purchase even more sustainable. Who Gives A Crap offers a subscription service that makes recycled, plastic-free toilet paper a no-brainer.
Katherine Oakes is a professional writer, editor and aspiring environmental advocate based on the East Coast. Her passion for sustainability and the outdoors comes only second to her love of really good tacos. She has written for various publications and brands including, Huckberry Journal, REI’s Adventure Projects, Pure Green Magazine and more. Offline, you can find her teaching yoga or blogging about her wholehearted attempts at sustainable living at The Basic Goods.