If we don’t start rethinking about the materials we’re using, especially plastic, “we are rapidly heading towards 'Planet Plastic,'” Dr Roland Geyer, an industrial ecologist from the University of California, told BBC News. Geyer actually revealed the figures to prove it in a paper that appeared in “Science Advances,” which he penned with some colleagues.
And with such a huge carbon footprint from the beauty industry, it’s really important for companies to keep coming up with more environmentally friendly solutions. As consumers, we can also make a big difference by swapping to eco-friendly products, like shampoo bars. The bars, which are equivalent to three medium sized bottles, eliminate the need for plastic packaging, the wasteful short-use plastic items. They’re the perfect proof that things don’t have to come in bottles to serve a purpose and there are always innovative alternatives.
As well as being great for the environment, solid shampoo bars can be better for your hair. Many are made with healthy, natural, fresh ingredients and essential oils. Plus, they are concentrated so you can use less than normal shampoos, making them last longer. With each pucker lasting for about 80 washes, you’ll definitely be doing your pocket a favour. They are versatile too and can be used over your body and to wash various things. Another reason to switch to bars is they can be your go-to travel companions since they’re light, save space, and you don’t have to worry about spillage or liquid restrictions. Talking of transportation, the fact these bars are so much smaller means far less trucks are needed to transport them from point A to point B, reducing that carbon footprint even further.
Perhaps the only downside to using shampoo bars is that you have to be careful with the way you apply them on your hair. Only a little is needed and that’s the key to keeping post-wash residue to a minimum. Lathering in a small amount also helps you avoid going out with heavy and waxy hair. However, if you apply too little, it can leave your locks feeling greasy and not clean enough. The best thing to do is apply a little and then reach for some more if necessary.
Additionally, you may not find one that addresses your specific hair needs just yet. We’re hopeful there will be a wider variety of choices coming out, though.
There’s been a rapid and excessive increase in plastic production from 1950 until now, with much of the growth caused by the increased use of plastic packaging, According to estimates from Euromonitor International’s global packaging trends report, over 480 billion plastic drinking bottles were sold in 2016 across the world and fewer than half of the bottles bought that year were collected for recycling.
Alarm bells are being raised over the amount of plastics that end up burnt, accumulating in landfills or littering the natural environment. Plus, at some point much of it ends up in the oceans, creating a huge threat to the planet. Plastics break down into microplastics, which are known to harm marine life and seabirds that mistake them for food. (Humans can also consume microplastics via seafood and even sea salt). In fact, there’s a shocking prediction that by the middle of the century, the oceans will contain more plastic waste than fish, tonne for tonne.
Since plastic pollution has swelled into one of the most pervasive environmental problems, more and more companies are making strides to cut down on wasteful plastics. Just recently, McDonald’s announced it would end the use of plastic straws in the UK and Ireland next year. The fast-food chain, which uses 1.8 million straws a day in the UK, will switch to paper thanks to a customer campaign.