Eco-friendly bathroom
Green Living

Everything You Need for an Eco-Friendly Bathroom: Simple Tips, Hacks, and Swaps

Bathrooms, while usually the smallest room in people’s homes, hold a special magic all their own.  Enter in the morning, bleary-eyed and half asleep, walk out a few (several?) minutes later, feeling and looking more like yourself.  Enter before bed, tired and worn, and emerge, clean, prepared for rest and relaxation.  Although small, bathrooms are home to various functions and oh-so-many products.  Much like creating a more sustainable Kitchen, having an eco-friendly bathroom is very doable in small steps.  Here’s over 20 Tips, Hacks, and Swaps for An Eco Friendly Bathroom. 

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. I only link to products I have personally used or researched. 

(Looking for eco-friendly kitchen tips? Click here!)

Tips:  The Big 2

Conserve Electricity

This tip can be useful for every part of your house.  Unlike the Kitchen, the bathroom most likely doesn’t have appliances that stay plugged in all day.  But it’s still good to be aware of turning lights off every time you leave a room.  

Switching to energy-saving light bulbs, like LED, is another easy way to reduce bathroom energy use.  LED bulbs can last much longer, too.  I would LOVE to have motion sensor lighting in my bathroom so I can stop turning the light off after children forget 1,000 times a day.  

Conserve electricity

Conserve Water

The bathroom is all about water so there are lots of tips here!  The first, as always, is to be aware of your usage.  Don’t let the water run while you’re brushing your teeth or even while scrubbing your hands.  Keep an eye on your kids and give reminders to, “Never let the water run” (sung in my head – thanks again, Barney). 

Try reducing your shower time or install a low-flow shower head.  I am guilty of taking long, hot showers after a hard day.  Recently, I started timing how long those showers actually were and I’ve realized I can have a relaxing shower, get everything done I need to, and be done in 8 minutes.  Trust me, this is a huge improvement from before!

Tips to conserve water

Another way to reduce water usage in the bathroom is to focus on the toilet.  By filling a plastic water bottle and putting it in the tank of your toilet, you can save 3,000 gallons of water a year.  There’s also something called a Toilet Tank Bank that can do the same thing.  I’d prefer the free, upcycled plastic water bottle version, though!

Lastly, do not wait to fix any leaks or running toilets.  Sometimes we get used to problems instead of finding timely solutions.  A running toilet can waste a gallon of water per hour! 

Hacks

Some major uses of the bathroom involve getting ourselves looking and smelling nice.  This can take a lot of consumable products that we have to replenish frequently. 

DIY

The biggest hack of going eco-friendly in the bathroom is trying your hand at DIY alternatives.  Body and face scrubs, lotions, hair oils, face treatments, and even air fresheners can all be made with simple recipes.  Store these in small jars and refill when used up for a zero waste routine.  

Here are some favorites: 

DIY lotion:  cocoa butter, coconut oil, and essential oils of your choosing 

DIY face scrub:  coffee grounds and coconut oil

DIY body scrub:  brown sugar and coconut oil

DIY hair oil:  any base oil (olive oil, castor oil, argan oil, or jojoba oil – all great for your hair) plus a few drops of essential oils

DIY Eco Friendly beauty products

Get rid of the toxic air fresheners.  

I am one of those people that is super sensitive to scents.  More notable, “fake” scents like Exotic Tropical Blossoms or Clean Linen or Aqua Waves… whatever that means.  Over the years I’ve discovered this is because those great scents our air fresheners are emitting are actually polluting the air we breathe.  Air fresheners can cause migraines, asthma attacks, dermatitis, and more. 

What to do instead?  Open a window once in a while to increase ventilation and make sure you’re cleaning regularly.  You can also use an aromatherapy diffuser, homemade potpourri, a DIY air freshener spray, or (my favorite!) plants to clean the air!  

Air purifying houseplants

Eco-Friendly Bathroom Swaps

Last, but certainly not least, we have our list of bathroom swaps.  This can get overwhelming, so to make this a little simpler, use this rule:  

Every time you run out of a product in the bathroom, ask yourself, “Can I replace this with an eco-friendly alternative?”  The answer will always be yes!

Dental Products

Toothbrushes:  Choose either a rechargeable toothbrush where you just swap out brush heads periodically, or a biodegradable option like bamboo.  There are TONS of options here, so try out a few and see what works best for you. 

Dental Floss:  Again, lots of options.  Some companies have a glass floss holder that you can buy refills for.  If you prefer floss picks, the one below is plastic free and biodegradable.  Don’t forget the floss itself.  You can find floss made of bamboo fiber, corn fiber, and silk.  Check that the floss you choose is biodegradable or compostable so it won’t be sitting around in a landfill for all eternity.  

Toothpaste:  A zero waste option that I can’t wait to try is toothpaste tablets (I’m waiting until the kids are a little older).  These are just what they sound like, you chew them up and brush your teeth with the paste that forms.  Most are packaged in refillable containers so all you have to do is order refills.  This is also a great option for those that like to travel and want to avoid the tiny plastic toothpaste tubes. 

Mouth wash:  An eco-friendly mouthwash is not hard to find, but do a little research on the features.  A zero waste option will come in a plastic-free, refillable or reusable container.  There are concentrated options, whitening options, vegan options, Flouride free options, and more.  Make sure you know what you want when you start researching these!

Beauty Products

Cotton rounds/makeup remover wipes:  Nowadays you can find reusable cotton rounds with a quick search on the internet.  You can also take old material and cut it up into smaller pieces and use this for your makeup remover wipes.  Old flannel pajama pants work great for this project as they’re very soft on your delicate skin.  You could also go a more traditional route and just use wash cloths. 

Q-Tips/Cotton swabs:  Reusable q-tips are a thing!  They are plastic free and usually have a silicone tip.  They often come with a carrying case so they don’t get lost.  The set below comes with different textures and shapes for makeup application vs cleaning.  

Toilet Paper

Choose toilet paper that is from 100% recycled paper so you know a bunch of trees weren’t cut down just to wipe your butt.  Who Gives A Crap is my favorite toilet paper company:  100% recycled paper, plastic free packaging, carbon neutral shipping, and 50% of their profits are donated for clean water and sanitation. They also have a “fancy” 100% renewable bamboo toilet paper option for those that want to splurge. 

Click Here for Who Gives A Crap

Cleaning Products:  Skip all the sprays, foams, and scrubs and keep your bathroom routine minimal.  Read all about eco-friendly bathroom and kitchen cleaning here. 

Shower Stuff

Razor:  Instead of plastic disposable razors, try a safety razor.  I know these look intimidating at first, but people have been using them since the 1900’s.  If this isn’t your thing, opt for an electric razor with rechargeable batteries that will last several years (and hopefully decades). Also, skip the shaving cream and just get a good lather on your soap.  No need to buy extra products. 

Shampoo, Conditioner, Soap:  You have a few options with these guys.  I think the easiest is to switch to bar versions of shampoo, conditioner, and soap.  They should come in recyclable or reusable packaging and be 100% plastic free.  The fun thing is, you can find sampler sets to test your favorite!  Shampoo and conditioner bars sound weird, but I made the switch a few years ago and it’s so worth it.  I have only repurchased twice in 3 years! One bar of soap per year is amazing.  

The other option would be to use a company that offers refillable bottles like Prose or Plaine.  This way you can reduce plastic bottles and keep your regular hair care routine.  

Soap is soap.  Find a good smelling bar soap you love and keeps your skin feeling good in all weather. This can range from a DIY you find at a local craft fair to something fancy from Lush.  

Zero waste eco-friendly bathroom

Deodorant

Plastic free and zero waste deodorants are abundant these days.  Reviews can be mixed on how well natural deodorants work, so do some research and be ready to try some options.  Your body can take time to  adjust to new products so don’t give up immediately.  

This option is the one I go for.  It still comes in plastic, but I’ve had the same one for over 2 years.  The one before that I only had to replace because I dropped it and broke it haha.  This may be a strange option, but If you don’t believe me, take the time to read over the 21,000 reviews!

Period Supplies

Few things have changed my life more than my go-to period supplies.  Single use tampons and pads should be a thing of the past with all the new reusable inventions we have now.  Period undies are amazing.  Menstrual cups have come a long way since I first started using them.  And I’ve landed on my new favorite and will never look back: the Nixit disc.  There’s a learning curve with every new personal product like these, but it’s worth the time investment in figuring it out to never have to think about it again. Here’s some reusable options: 

Makeup

I feel makeup is a hard topic to broach because people are very loyal to their brands, colors, styles, etc.  Whenever possible, look for plastic free brands or things that can be refilled.  Some brands to check out are:  Fat and the Moon, Elate Cosmetics, Subtl Beauty, Ethique, and Clean-Faced Cosmetics.  

Sustainable makeup brands

You could also choose to minimize and go without.  Stay tuned for a post next month about quitting makeup.  

Are you looking for more ways to be sustainable in 2023? Read my post about setting goals you can actually achieve!

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Progress over perfection!

Phew! That was a long list. I’m positive you found at least one tip, hack, or swap achievable!  Always remember, start small and choose one or two things to focus on at a time for a more sustainable home.  Progress over perfection!  

What are you going to try from this list? I’d love to know.  Leave a comment below!

Eco friendly bathroom tips

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