Your bathroom can have a much bigger impact on the environment than you may think. From the amount of water you use to the type of cosmetics and body products that are washed down your drain, you may be making simple, everyday decisions that have lasting effects on the environment.
However, there are plenty of simple and affordable changes you can make to make your bathroom more eco-friendly. Let’s find out how.
Minimise Water Usage
Showers, baths and toilets are among the biggest water users in the house. Fortunately, there are several simple ways to minimise water usage in the bathroom.
The easiest way to minimise water usage in the bathroom is to take shorter showers. Shorter showers use less water than longer showers, so if you can cut down on your shower time, you can also reduce your water usage. You can also avoid taking baths, as a bath uses much more water than a shower.
Another easy way to save water is to install a low-flow showerhead. Low-flow showerheads use less water than traditional showerheads, and they can save a significant amount of water over time. Replacing an old showerhead with a 4-star shower at 6L/min could save up to 105kL of water each year and $315 annually on water bills.
Low flow taps are another great option if you’re looking to reduce water usage from your bathroom sink. Low-flow taps mix air into the water-flow, creating the impression of a strong water flow while using significantly less water. Using low-flow taps or aerators can reduce water use from the usual 15-18L/min down to as little as 2L/min.
Turning off the tap while you brush your teeth or shave can also save a significant amount of water over time.
Installing a higher water rated toilet is another great way to save water. Replacing an old single-flush toilet (12L flush) with a 4-star toilet (3.5L flush) could save you as much 50kL of water annually.
Finally, save water in the bathroom by ensuring that you find and fix any and all leaks as quickly as possible.
Use Eco-friendly Soaps and Beauty Products
The products that you decide to use on your body can also have a big impact on the environment. Self care and beauty products like soap, shampoo, shaving cream and lotions will get washed down the drain and any chemical or plastics in these products can enter the waterstream, potentially causing serious environmental problems.
Avoid antibacterial soaps in the bathroom. They don’t actually do much to improve hygiene; however, they are damaging to the environment when washed down the drain.
There are many reasons why eco-friendly and natural beauty products are better for the environment. They are made with natural ingredients that are not harmful to the environment. For example, many eco-friendly soaps are made with olive oil, which is a renewable resource. Natural soaps also often contain essential oils, which have a variety of benefits for the skin. In contrast, conventional soaps typically contain synthetic fragrances and other potentially harmful chemicals.
Natural bath and beauty products are also more likely to be made with recycled and sustainable materials and come in packaging that is recyclable or biodegradable. For example, many eco-friendly soaps come in paper wrappers that can be recycled. Alternatively, some natural soaps come in cardboard boxes that can be composted. Using recyclable or biodegradable packaging helps to reduce the amount of waste produced by these products.
Minimise Plastic Packaging
As suggested above, shop for bathroom products that minimise plastic packaging. Aim for paper or cardboard packaging where possible. You should also try to avoid single-use bottles and instead purchase refills wherever you can.
Use Responsibly Sourced, Recycled Toilet Paper
Most people don’t think twice about what kind of toilet paper they buy. The average Australian uses 88 rolls of toilet paper per year. This means that about 1.5 million trees are required to produce enough toilet paper annually in Australia alone.
Recycled toilet paper is a great way to reduce your environmental impact. When you buy recycled toilet paper, you’re helping to conserve important ecosystems and reduce demand for plantation logging.
Recycled paper is made from post-consumer waste: that is, paper that has already been used and would otherwise end up in a landfill. By using recycled toilet paper, you’re reducing the demand for new paper products, which helps to protect forests.
In addition to being better for the environment, recycled toilet paper is also just as soft and absorbent as regular toilet paper. So there’s really no downside to making the switch! The next time you’re at the store, be sure to look for recycled toilet paper – it’s a small change that can make a big difference.
Making a few small, simple and affordable changes in the bathroom can go a long way to helping to protect the environment.