According to new research, our intricate haircare routines are harming the planet, producing a much larger carbon footprint than any other beauty ritual. And what with only 50% of bathroom waste being recycled (compared to 90% of kitchen waste), it’s no wonder more and more of us are becoming increasingly concerned about things like plastic consumption in the beauty industry and the mess it leaves behind.
But the growing awareness isn't only spurring us as individuals to think consciously about our own plastic beauty waste. It is encouraging major brands to address their eco footprint, too, with many turning to more sustainable and environmentally friendly ways to both produce and package their products.
While it's difficult to go entirely plastic-free, small lifestyle tweaks do add up. So in a bid to try and cut down on my plastic use, and to help anyone out there trying to do the same, I decided to start small, by ditching my classic bottled shampoo for a more eco-friendly, usually plastic-free alternative. Enter: solid shampoo bars.
A popular way to cut down on your bathroom beauty packaging (and save space inside your travel bag), solid shampoo bars, or shampoo soaps, enlist the same ingredients as your trusty bottled shampoo, such as moisturising, frizz-fighting shea butter and argan oil. But they tend to use less water and much less unnecessary cardboard or plastic wrapping.
That said, they have a bit of a bad rap in beauty. Some believe that they don't lather up or clean hair as well as 'normal' shampoo. Then there's the argument that they are slippery and messy when wet, and no one wants sludge ruining their bathroom shelfie. So I decided to put my hair on the line and try as many solid shampoo bars as I could get my hands on, to whittle down the very best. Here’s how I got on...