In this series, I will be talking about ways to go green in every area of your life and part of that is going green in our homes. In the previous post, I talked about why you should go green to begin with. In this post, I will talk about how to go green in one of the most central areas of everyone’s home: The bathroom. (You were expecting the kitchen, weren’t you? That’s another post, another time!) Isn’t it ironic that the bathroom is the place we wash our bodies and most of the time, our bathrooms are cleaned with chemicals and are a place we don’t think about when it comes to greening our lives?
The good news is, it doesn’t have to be this way and the bathroom is a perfect place to start on a natural living journey as it provides so many opportunities to go green!
Let’s start with the way you clean:
- Vinegar and water will clean many things in the bathroom and it will disinfect without harmful chemicals. Don’t waste your money on expensive “green” cleaners when ordinary vinegar will do the trick. You can use 1 part vinegar and 1 part water in a clean spray bottle to clean hard water spots, counter tops and shower stalls. You can use straight vinegar to clean your mirrors. It will leave a streak free shine.
- For a mild abrasive cleaner, mix 1 part baking soda and 1 part water. You can gently scrub this into grout, tubs, showers, sinks and floors. Use Baking soda to scrub the toilet as well.
Now, let’s look at products you use in the bathroom:
- Toilet paper should be the only thing you use that is a throw-away in your bathroom and you should use a recycled kind if you can. There are often coupons available for these green brands and they are getting more and more reasonably priced.
- For drying hands, toss the paper towels. Go for washable hand towels and change them out several times a week to keep it sanitary.
- Skip regular cotton towels and slowly replace them with bamboo bath towels.
- Use as many green personal care products as you can reasonably afford. For feminine care, consider using a Diva Cup-a re-useable product that doesn’t get tossed or recycled material tampons.
- For soaps and facial cleaners, avoid any products that have ingredients you can’t pronounce. You can make homemade body wash, homemade scrubs, and homemade facial cleansers and masks.
- For toothpaste, try baking soda and water or one of these homemade toothpaste recipes.
- Use PVC-free shower curtains. PVC production releases a bunch of chemicals into the air and it also does when it breaks down.
Finally, Here are some excellent ways to conserve resources in the bathroom:
- Install a low-flow shower head. You will save hundreds of gallons of water every month.
- Do the classic: Don’t run the water while you brush your teeth or shave. You should also shut off the shower while you shave or soap up as well. One way to be conscious of your water consumption during a shower is to cover the drain hole and see how much water you are using.
- Place a half-gallon plastic milk jug filled with rocks in your toilet tank to save water. It used to be recommended that you place a brick in there, but brick actually breaks down the internal parts in a toilet.
If you hate the way your bathroom smells, but hate chemical air fresheners even more, try these tips for making the air smell, um, less offensive:
- Leave fresh coffee beans out on the counter and place a candle in the middle. Light the candle and allow it to warm the beans. Just be sure to blow it out when you leave home or go to bed and watch it if you have little ones.
- Make your own great smelling spray with water and 10-12 drops of essential oils. Place in a spray bottle and put on “mist” setting. Here are more homemade air freshener recipes.
How do you go green in the bathroom?