One of the rooms in our house which contains the most plastic (after the kitchen) is the bathroom. The shower, specifically, used to be lined with plastic bottles of all shapes and sizes. Shampoo and conditioner. Shower gel. Face washes. Special shampoos for the kids. A ‘Manly’ shampoo and shower gel combo for my husband. The thought of using a shampoo bar had never really crossed my mind; picking up bottles of shampoo and conditioner was just part of my regular shop.
But once you start realising how much plastic is part of our lives, you start to see things differently. All those plastic bottles would go in the recycling…but what would happen to them? Would they really get recycled? What a lot of energy and effort. So I moved to buying industrial sized bottles and looked for refills, but didn’t find anything.
One weekend I was dragged into Lush by my kids. I have spent the past decade trying to avoid the place, the smell gives me a headache, but it’s like heaven for little girls. And I spotted the shampoo bars. Yes, they were a bit pricey…but there was no packaging other then the brown paper bag they were wrapped in and, given I have been trying to teach the kids about protecting the environment, I thought I should put my money where my mouth was.
Do Shampoo Bars Work?
I was pleasantly surprised when I used it. It foamed up well, covered my hair nicely and rinsed out no problem. I also used the conditioner bar which was not as effective as normal conditioner, but left my hair easy to comb through.
The cost per bar 8.95 euros, but Lush claim they last up to 80 washes. I would say that it definitely lasted as long as two bottles of shampoo.
It definitely worked well; my kids find it easy to use and my husband likes it too.
Shampoo Bars – The Downside
Ok, so they cost a bit more upfront, but they do last a long time. However, when you get to the end of them, they start to squish up a bit making them harder to use. You will definitely need a soap dish; ideally one with grooves to let the bar dry out a bit. By the end of mine I was scraping the bits together to rub on my head. A bit annoying, but it still worked.
I have so far only used Lush (there’s one near my house so it’s easy). There is a long list of ingredients in these shampoo bars, including SLS, and the perfume is quite strong which may be off-putting for some people.
I also found that after using it every day for a while, my hair needed something else, so I switched back to shampoo for a few days, and then back to the bar. My hair is very fine and straight and I wash it every day…which is why I wanted a shampoo option with less plastic.
Sometimes my hair has felt a bit more knotted, so I bought a bottle of hair oil which I use every day after washing…it’s also helped with the static my hair has suffered from this winter! And the bottle is glass…
I would absolutely recommend these bars. They may differ according to your hair type, but everyone I have pressed them on so far has really liked them. I would say these are especially good for people with short hair – my husband is a complete convert. I don’t see any reason why the lather from these can’t double as shower gel too?
These are the ones we use…and my shower has gone from having 5 plastic shampoo and conditioner bottles in it to none!
If you have any other brands of shampoo bars that you would recommend, I’d love to hear about them.