Here at Shorebox, we’re soap bar fanatics. And we’re determined to convert you to our (slightly crazed) levels of soap bar appreciation.
That’s because paper-wrapped soap bars can replace so many plastic goods — the two obvious ones being hand soap and shower gel. But there are bar alternatives to many products, including hair conditioner, body moisturiser, facial cleanser, and shampoo — even shampoo for your dog!
Soap bars also last considerably longer than liquid alternatives because they contain much less water — so you’re getting more bang for your buck, too. And in case they couldn’t get any better, soap bars require five times less energy to produce than liquid soap.
So now you’re a bar convert, here are six tips to help you get the most out of your bar.
1. Be a good host
Like we mentioned, soap bars have the potential to last a long time — the trick is to keep them as dry as possible between uses. Water breaks your bar down, so keeping it in the direct stream of your shower will shorten its life. Store it outside of the shower on a soap dish, ideally one with holes, to let it dry. This will also prevent soap residue from building up in your shower or bath. If you end up having multiple bars on the go, a bath rack can come in handy to prevent SBC (Soap Bar Congestion*).
*We may have made that acronym up.
Shop: Soap rest
2. Don’t offend it
3. Make sure you’re compatible
It’s time to bust a myth. Some people worry that all-natural soap bars aren’t “antibacterial”. But experts say that thoroughly washing your hands with warm water and regular soap is all you need. Plus, “antibacterial” soap actually needs to be left on your skin for two minutes before rinsing for it to work — we’re guessing you probably haven’t got time for that.
4. Give it space
5. Cut it into pieces
6. End on good terms
Towards the end of its life, a soap bar will turn into small scraps. These are tricky to wash with, and have a tendency to escape down the drain. It doesn’t have to end this way. Try putting the scraps into a small mesh bag to continue washing with them. Or, get crafty and turn them into liquid soap. Just follow this tutorial and reuse an old soap dispenser.
Congratulations, you’re now a soap bar whisperer. You can browse paper-wrapped soap here.
Ready for more zero-waste tips? Head over to our beginner’s guide how to reduce plastic for more.
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