11 Ways to Reduce Your Use of Plastic in Your Personal Care Routine

We all know we need to carry our own shopping bags, keep a reusable water bottle on hand, and forego straws to cut down on our massive addiction to plastic. Plastic production not only pollutes the planet, chemicals leeched from it pollute our bodies, and plastic garbage kills wildlife and marine life. To say that our plastic obsession is out of control would be an understatement. While most of us are taking strides in the right direction, there’s a lot more we can do, particularly when it comes to our personal care routines.

Here are some ways to cut your use of plastic.

Bar Soap

While it may be tempting to buy and use those plastic pump bottles of liquid hand soap, choose good old-fashioned bars of soap instead. Of course, make sure it is free from all the chemical crap and artificial scents found in most soaps. I think back to my visits to my grandparents’ farm house as a child, my grandmother even saved the scrap pieces of soap and melted them down to form larger-sized ones. If a woman who ran a whole house, farm, business and parented 10 children can take the time to do that, surely we can simply choose bar soap over those in plastic bottles.

Bar Shampoo

While you’re making the switch to bars of soap, do the same with your shampoo as well.

Nano-Free and Micro-Free Skincare Options

Did you know that those nanoparticles or microbeads that many companies market as skin exfoliators are actually microplastics? It’s true. In addition to avoiding products that contain microbeads or nanobeads, be sure to avoid those that contain polypropylene or polyethylene as well.

Tubeless Toothpaste

There’s really no need to use toothpaste that’s packaged in plastic, most of which are also packed with chemical ingredients. Instead, I keep a reusable jar of baking soda mixed with food grade peppermint essential oil (about 5 to 10 drops of essential oil per ˝ cup of baking soda).

Reusable Razors

Choose one that you can replace the blades instead of the whole razor. Alternatively, for large areas like legs, remove hair through sugaring or using natural wax. Not for the faint of heart: you can also choose a straight-edge razor to shave small areas like your face.

Plastic-Free Period

Choose plastic-free pads, tampons, or opt for reusable pads or the Diva-Cup or Ruby Cup.

Eco Cosmetics

There are some amazing, natural cosmetics that come in bamboo containers. Additionally, some companies like Elate Cosmetics use minimal packaging, reusable bamboo compacts, and even ship their eyeshadows and other flatter cosmetics in small envelopes made of seed paper which you can plant to grow wildflowers.

Forget Glitter

All that glitters isn’t gold. Nowadays, it’s plastic. That’s because the beauty industry (as well as every other industry that uses glitter) is making glitter from tiny pieces of plastic. These microplastics leak into the water supply and soil, where they can wreak havoc on wildlife and marine life, forever. The plastic-based glitter collects in their stomachs where it can cause them to die of starvation.

Natural Conditioner

Periodically rinse your hair with apple cider vinegar rather than buying more plastic packaging.

Paper-Wrapped Toilet Paper

Most health food stores offer toilet paper that is packaged in paper, rather than plastic.

Bamboo Brushes and Toothbrushes

There are many brushes and toothbrushes made of bamboo, rather than plastic. As an added bonus: these choices rarely ever contain the synthetic dyes in the bristles that absorb into the mucus membranes of your mouth.

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Dr. Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM shares her food growing, cooking, preserving, and other food self-sufficiency adventures at FoodHouseProject.com. She is the publisher of the free e-newsletter World’s Healthiest News and an international best-selling and 20-time published book author whose works include: The Cultured Cook: Delicious Fermented Foods with Probiotics to Knock Out Inflammation, Boost Gut Health, Lose Weight & Extend Your Life. Follow her work.



Sophie L
Sophie Lyesterday


Mike R
Mike R2 days ago


William T
William T2 days ago

Thank you

Paulo Reeson
Paulo Reeson2 days ago


Sara S
Sara S3 days ago


Lara A
Lara A3 days ago

thank you

Leanne K
Leanne K3 days ago

Meanwhile go and have a look at every buildings site and around every new housing estate. There is sooo much plastic litter flying around the place. How about we concentrate on male industries instead of constantly putting the emphasis and blame on women

Leo C
Leo Custer4 days ago

Thank you for sharing!

Leo C
Leo Custer5 days ago

Thanks for sharing!

Caitlin L
Caitlin L6 days ago