I think the bathroom cabinet is where I have come the furthest on my Low Impact/zero waste/minimalist journey and it was where I started. I think it is quite a transformation which I am so happy about! I now have full control of what goes on my skin and have reduced the environmental impact of my bathroom cabinet substantially! So what have I done?
My starting point wasn’t too bad but I had a lot of products that I “might use sometime” in another cabinet. I counted in my post here (Swedish) how many products I used frequently and the result of 20 different products suprised me since I thought I was quite minimalistic. Here they are:
Tooth paste, shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, dry shampoo, deodorant, shaving cream, face wash, face cream, make up remover, hand lotion, soap, body lotion, lip balm, perfume, mascara, eye shadow, eyeliner, powder and rouge.
If you also add less frequently used products such as sun screen, nail polish, nail polish remover, hair mask, bronzing powder, concealer, lipstick, night cream, face mask, hair oil and detangler spray I used a total of 31 products! Here are the steps that I have taken:
- I immediately threw out the product that had harmful ingredients (see list of chemicals to avoid in my post here).
- When researching potentially dangerous chemicals in beauty products I realized that 1. the industry controls itself when it comes to ingredients used and 2. that there are no regulations on labeling. I decided that the easiest way to take control and not having to stay updated on what chamicals to avoid was to make my own products or get as natural and organic products that I can find.
- I bought certified organic products like face cream, mascara, shampoo, conditioner, shower gel and tooth paste without fluoride.
- I replace products with sustainable alternatives: I bought an alun stone for deodorant, natural sponge instead of tampons, a metal saftey razor, bamboo toothbrush, boar bristle wooden brush, glass nail file and reusable fabric cotton pads.
- Then along came coconut oil! I use it for washing my face, shaving my legs and as a hair mask together with almond oil.
- I also make my own face mask from bentonite clay and active charcoal and my own face cream. I use corn starch as dry schampoo.
- I’ve pretty much stopped using all make up except for mascara. Both because I want to let my skin breathe and that it is very hard to find organic make up that isn’t very expensive. So I’ve just gotten used to not wearing make up. I have also stopped using perfume.
So this is what my bathroom cabinet looks like now:
So the products I use now are:
tooth paste, schampoo, conditioner, shower gel, body lotion, mascara, coconut oil, corn starch, bentonite clay, active charcoal, almond oil, beeswax and aloe vera.
Total: 13 products and quite a different list than the first one since most of them are edible. I still use make up occasionally as I mentioned above and still own nail polish though I haven’t used it in a very long time (and will probably throw them out soon). So what do I have left to do?
As soon as my body lotion is used up I will go over to using my DIY face cream for my body too. When I’ve used up my schampoo I’m going to try a schampoo bar so that I don’t have to buy plastic containers. I will try to find almond oil in a glass jar when my current one runs out. I still use my plastic razor since I wanted to use up the disposable heads (I’m on my last one now) so I will have to learn how to use the metal safety razor soon. But other than that I think that I have done everything that I set out to do. It feels very empowering to have taken control of chemical intake on at least one area. Since I’ve eliminated a lot of products and I’m making most of my other ones it is also in line with my frugality resolutions.