Dental Hygiene + Skincare
‘Plastic toothbrushes aren’t so bad’ you might assume… over 30 million are used and disposed of by Australians each year, amounting to approximately 1,000 tonnes of landfill. Massively bad. The same goes for other brushes, typically manufactured from nylon and polypropylene plastic (made from non-renewable fossil fuels).
Then there’s a slew of single-use ‘essentials’: dental floss with a handle (!!), cotton earbuds with their plastic stems, one-use make-up removing pads (usually paired with bottled, chemical solutions) and other non-biodegradable wipes.
These products are getting a lot of attention at the moment, with the astounding amount of waste in our oceans more visible than ever. The ongoing manufacture of plastics and demand for replacement disposable products is completely unsustainable, plus we’re actually inadvertently eating this toxic stuff!
In terms of liquids, like soaps and cleansers, we again return to that packaging conundrum. The verdict: solid bars reduce waste. Furthermore, natural, locally-made options are always best as they significantly reduce the carbon footprint that comes with international sourcing, manufacture, and transportation.
alternatives to try
Any organic, natural-fibre cloth – disposable face wipes might be convenient for you now, not so much for your kids’ kids’ kids. It turns out applying water (and soap; see below) to your skin with clean hands, patting dry with said cloth, hanging it up to dry and washing it every few days for the next 10 years is the way to go.
The Fab Four bamboo toothbrushes from Bamkiki – offering biodegradable brushes made from sustainably sourced bamboo, this Aussie company also helps preserve the Great Barrier Reef, aka our impending climate change tragedy.
Santé by ENJO reusable makeup remover – no chemicals required, just water! This product is magical, even when you’re tackling stubborn mascara and eyeliners. I gift it to everyone.
EcoMax Double-Sided Nail Brush from Biome – This plant-fibre tool is biodegradable and environmentally-friendly, it’s amazing what you can achieve with only this and a little elbow ‘grease’. Even Biome (the eco-product online marketplace where you can buy it) is B Corp certified.
Kuu Konjac Naked Sponges from Biome – made from 100% Konjac vegetable plant root, these natural cleansing sponges remove dirt and oil, naturally restoring the pH level of the skin, as well as encourage new skin cells.
Go Bamboo cotton buds from Biome – Another offering in biodegradable, sustainably sourced bamboo. If we follow the UK, plastic versions may soon be banned anyway!
Absolute Avocado and Lemon Myrtle soap from The Australian Soap Company. – made from 100% pure virgin avocado oil, these affordable, moisturising soaps are palm oil-free, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, detergent-free, biodegradable and vegan.
Rose Geranium Pink Clay Soap Bar and Activated Charcoal Soap from Soap Club – This Melbourne-base studio offers natural cold-process bar soaps, liquid Castile soap, organic hand and body cream, natural deodorant, and natural perfume. Their entire range is vegan, palm oil-free and cruelty-free.
Coconut, Manuka Honey & Kelp and Vanilla Soap from Ecostore – one for our Kiwi readers: these plant-and-mineral-based soaps are made in New Zealand, to the strictest environmental standards in an Enviromark Diamond and CarboNZero certified factory.