16 October 2015

Back on the Soap Box

I don't know when the world decided it needed liquid soap instead of soap in bars. I think it had something to do with the emergence of germ-o-phobia and the addition of anti-bacterial chemicals to everything a couple of decades ago. And I totally get that bars of soap in places like public bathrooms can totally be germ magnets.

But for home use? Most soap sold in bars is still packaged in paper.
Liquid soap, however, is packaged in plastic. And it's ... kind of the same thing as bar soap, except with a lot of water added. So you get a double-whammy of extra petroleum: the single-use plastic package that goes in the landfill when the soap is all gone*, and the extra water weight that makes up extra shipping volume and weight.

Bar soap works great for handwashing. It works great as a body wash in the shower. Certain bar soaps (I like Dr. Bronner's) work well on dishes. And you can even get bar shampoo from a couple of manufacturers.

Just like body wash, there are lots of varieties: glycerin soap that won't clog your pores, deodorant soap, soap with lots of moisturizer to keep your skin from drying out. Some of the bar shampoos work better with dry hair, some better with oily scalp.

So, do me a favor? Think about switching from the plastic bottle full of soap to a nice solid bar the next time you run out.
* IF the soap is all gone. The design of a lot of the packaging makes it very difficult to use up all of the contents, so if you don't think to cut apart the bottle,  you end up throwing a quarter of the contents away.