The classic, old fashioned, solid bar of soap is making a stylish comeback. Not only are there some truly stunning bars out there, made with natural ingredients, no palm oil, essential oils, and all the good things – but they are also better for the planet!
Ditch the plastic
Let’s be honest, the planet is a hot mess and one of the things we keep seeing clogging up waterways and wrapped around our wildlife is plastic. Now, plastic is definitely not the only eco-problem we are facing, but it is one that we can absolutely start dealing with.
You don’t need to spend the next month of your life on a deep-dive into the world of #ZeroWaste and #PlasticFreeLiving; you can start small!
Just pick the next thing that runs out in your bathroom and ask – is there an unpackaged option for this?
The humble soap bar is the answer to your body-wash woes! It is affordable, convenient, and there are dozens of totally plastic-free bars of soap to choose from.
Whether you have sensitive skin or oily skin, whether you like strong smells or un-fragranced – you will find a plethora of delightful soaps for you, without the plastic packaging.
Stop paying for water
When you buy a bottle of liquid body wash or cleanser, you are actually buying mostly packaged water! The active ingredients in your body wash are only a fraction of the total volume of your bottle.
This means that the company that made the product is sourcing water from somewhere, treating it, mixing it with the active ingredient and then shipping it across the world to you. The water adds weight and size to the product, which means more space on ships, trucks, trains, and vans to transport it, and more fuel used for that extra volume and weight.
When you buy concentrated products like a bar of soap you are getting all the good stuff with none of the unnecessary water. The bar of soap automatically has a smaller transport fuel footprint. Brilliant!
Go simple and natural with your soap
If you care about what is in your products then natural soap bars are a great option. There and loads and loads of small producers in Ireland and further afield who create their soaps in small batches using only natural and planet-friendly ingredients.
When is the last time you looked at the ingredient list on a bottle of store-bought body wash? The list is almost always intimidatingly long and hard to understand, with up to 10 different chemicals just there for scent. On top of that, many products will have ingredients that are derived from oil – yes, the nasty fossil fuel kind – and other unsustainable sources. They also often contain unsustainable palm oil!
Your friendly neighbourhood soap bar on the other hand usually has a nice short list of natural, sustainable ingredients! Think plant-based oils, vegan ingredients, nothing tested on animals, and all safe to wash down your drain.
Support ethical businesses
When we choose the products that we want to bring into our homes we are also voting for the kind of world that we want to live in.
We can choose to support huge plastic hungry, synthetic fragrance oozing multinationals with questionable workers rights, or we can choose to support small family businesses here in Ireland and Europe.
Solid bars of soap may be a small way to start the ethical and sustainable business revolution – but hey, we have to start somewhere!
This ethical swap doesn’t cost more
You heard me! Sustainable living can get a bad reputation for being a bit pricey, but the classic soap bar is an excellent budget-friendly swap.
Your bar of soap will often last longer than a bottle of body wash, and costs about the same price – if not less!
This is especially true when you are looking at higher quality products. A really, really nice bar of super lush soap will cost you less than a bottle of fancy body wash 9 out of 10 times. (Ok, yes, you can choose to buy bars of soap with gold in them, but that is most definitely an outlier…)
So go forth and save your money and the planet at the same time!
At Dublin Food Co-op, we stock a range of wonderful soap bars – and even shampoo and conditioner bars – including wonderful brands like Palm Free Irish Soap, Faith in Nature, Dr Bronners and several more.
Take the next step on your sustainable personal care journey with our wide range of soap bars. Happy scrubbing!
A few bonus notes on bars of soap:
Keep your bars of soap dry to help keep them going longer without getting squishy. A soap-saver bag or a soap dish is a great option.
Just like body wash or shampoo, you may need to try a couple of them before you find one that you love. That is ok! Keep trying if you don’t find your favourite straight away.
These make fantastic birthday, mother’s day, father’s day, special occasion or Christmas gifts! Bundle up a few beautiful handmade bars of soap for your favourite person – job done!