1/26/12

I've Seen the Light. It Was Green.


I never heard of a shampoo bar until I read about it on my friend Betsy's blog called Eco Novice. I always go to her site to get a realistic perspective on going green. She has a way of being totally informative without being patronizing. Such a slippery slope! 

Last year one of her New Years resolutions was to switch to shampoo bars. I guess this trend has been going on while I've been blissfully throwing plastic bottles into my recycling bin. Instead of liquid shampoo in plastic bottles, people have made the switch to cut down on waste.  So when I ran out of shampoo last week (I really thought I was doing so well with my Modern Organics products!), I decided to give it a try. It's changed everything. I feel like angels are cleaning my hair and turning each strand into gold!

Hmm. Realistic perspectives on going green is not going to be my speciality. I'll leave that to Betsy. As she puts it: I honestly thought the transition would be a bit bumpier.  I've noticed minimal differences between using my Avalon Organics bottled shampoo and this shampoo bar. I have noticed that I can wash my hair a bit less often (every 1.5 to 2 weeks instead of once a week).

She takes it one step further and buys her shampoo bars from etsy or small local shops, but I'm not there yet. I bought the Godiva shampoo bar from Lush, a world wide cosmetic store. They claim their products are homemade, but how is that even possible? You can't fool me.

As far as going green, there are still some changes I would like to make. I have yet to get rid of my teflon pans. My love for bulk size Shout Stain Remover might always exist as long as I have kids in my house and I keep buying them overpriced American Apparel clothes. I have a drawer filled with plastic bags from the grocery store. But I am making progress.  Little by little I'll change the world.  And hey, I don't own a car! That's huge!

What ways have you decided to go green? Reusable grocery bags? Bike to work (rain or shine like Julie!)? Cloth Diapers? Less meat? All of the above? None of the above?* 

*AKA my husband Rob. He cringes when I start in on all this eco green stuff.  Even worse than when I talk to my kids about sex! ha





This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

36 comments:

  1. Which LUSH bar did you get?

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  2. oops forgot to put that in the post. just added the link. thanks for asking! I bought the Godiva, here's the link :) http://www.lushusa.com/shop/products/hair/solid-shampoos/godiva

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  3. Wait, wait. Betsy washes her hair once ever 2 weeks?! I thought I was doing well only washing it every other day! Last year, I vowed to start riding my bike more instead of driving or taking the train. This year, I vowed to start taking advantage of the compost bins we have in Dublin. So far, we've cut down on our garbage by so much just by using the compost bin - and it gets collected every 3 weeks. Can't believe it took me this long!

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  4. What we do is: cold water only washing, no stain remover and no softner. The laundry turns out just as clean. We use re--usable bags for grocery (they hold much more and don't break) and our schools are trash free for lunches, so no pre-packaged or sandwich bags, etc.
    My head reacts to different shampoos, so I'm sticking with my bottle one so I don't break out in hives ;)
    Are biggest contribution is to buy local whenever we can.

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  5. shampoo bars are the jam! they changed my hair too, and i've got straight as a board baby fine hair. practically an impossible feat!

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  6. We don't eat meat, everything else we buy as much as we can from local suppliers. I work from home, so though I do own a car, I don't commute. We moved to a house half the size of our last one so that we could afford to live within walking distance of everything. We use cloth bags for shopping and we compost. BUT. I don't do these things to be "green". I do them because it's a smarter way to live and keeps more money in my pocket!
    I have long considered ditching shampoo altogether and doing the apple cider vinegar rinse instead...but I'm scared of greasy hair. :)

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  7. We don't eat meat, everything else we buy as much as we can from local suppliers. I work from home, so though I do own a car, I don't commute. We moved to a house half the size of our last one so that we could afford to live within walking distance of everything. We use cloth bags for shopping and we compost. BUT. I don't do these things to be "green". I do them because it's a smarter way to live and keeps more money in my pocket!
    I have long considered ditching shampoo altogether and doing the apple cider vinegar rinse instead...but I'm scared of greasy hair. :)

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  8. excellent point. it is a smarter way to live and keeps money in the pocket. such a wonderful perspective!

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  9. ha! I'll answer twice. just to make sure you receive it. :) excellent point. it is a smarter way to live and keeps money in the pocket. such a wonderful perspective!

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  10. that's so great that you buy local. that's one of my favorites!

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  11. You may enjoy this blog http://thezerowastehome.com/ This family had done an amazing job in reducing their garbage. Very inspiring. There is also a video about them here http://vitality.yahoo.com/video-second-act-the-johnson-family-24454760 Thanks for sharing the shampoo bar, I will surely give it a try! I like to use for my laundry Charlie's soap powder, it is natural and lasts a lot!

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  12. We fill up the recycling bins every week, that's about it. I would love to start a garden someday too. Do you know anyone who's actually used disposable diapers? Just the thought of washing a full diaper.... yikes.

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  13. We have 2 recycling bins at home(1 for paper & I for plastic/glass bottles), we ride bikes to/from school, my child has several recycling bins in the school cafeteria, we are collecting plastic bottle lids so that the school can bring them to a recycle center & the school will get a free park bench for their playground,we stopped buying red meat,my kids don't buy school lunch (we try to eat mostly all natural & organic foods), we wash all of our clothes with cold water,& we try to buy the kids' clothes at local thrift stores:) I've never used a shampoo bar....buy me one for my b-day?..Hint,hint:)

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  14. So glad you are liking the shampoo bar! I gave up my Shout and Oxiclean stain removers pretty late in the game -- long after I switched my laundry detergent, for example. Now I find that the Biokleen Bac-out stain remover works really well (you can buy it at Whole Foods or Amazon), but then I maybe don't care as much about stains in general, being a bit of a slob myself, and using mostly hand-me-down/thrift store clothing for my kiddos.

    Ditching teflon bakeware was easy for me, but the cookware was definitely more challenging. I have like 10 posts about ditching teflon b/c it's always turning up somewhere else (like my Glide floss!).

    Not having a car is huge! You should feel super eco-virtuous. I know I would.

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  15. So funny, at first I thought you were talking about a place -- a Shampoo Bar -- where you could choose from a bunch of different shampoos, get a head massage & shampoo, and grab a drink (kind of like a Beauty Bar/Nail Bar).

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  16. I'm on-board for Shampoo bar but what do you do for conditioner? And what's wrong with teflon pans? Am I being poisoned? Good thing I don't actually use them :)

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  17. Jeannine, I have actually used cloth diapers. I also was royally grossed out at the thought initially. My sister (who had kids first, and knew how squeamish I could be about a poopy diaper) was convinced I'd never be able to make the switch.

    I am on kid number 3, and I switched from disposables when my 1st child was 1, so I know well how they compare. I really prefer cloth now. For one thing, no pooplosions -- I have had ZERO poop-up-the-back incidents with cloth diapers. You are welcome to email me any questions you have! I've converted a few friends. betsy(at)eco-novice(dot)com

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  18. I didn't know shampoo bars existed. I'll have to try it out when I run out of my whole foods shampoo, that i just bought. PS. like someone else mentioned, I also thought the shampoo bar was a place....like the braid bar or the dry bar (blow dry bar) somewhere in the city. haha

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  19. MotherhoodispainlessMarch 30, 2012 at 6:41 PM

    We use reusable totes wherever we can. We shop for veggies and other stuff at the Greenmarket, we go organic for eggs and dairy and most meat. I don't use softener and use environmentally friendly detergent and household cleaners (unless it's the toilet...ick.) I am trying to transition to cruelty free beauty products. (And I make my own deodorant. It rocks. )

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  20. just watched the video from the zero waste home. inspiring! love the meat in glass jars! ha

    thanks for the link. :)

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  21. wow! nice job! Yes! I'll totally get a you a shampoo bar!!

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  22. I'm still using my left over liquid conditioner. Lush has a solid conditioner that I'm tempted to try. Here's the link: http://www.lushusa.com/shop/products/hair/conditioners/jungle

    And Lush also has solid skin moisturizers! here's the link: http://www.lushusa.com/shop/products/body/massage-bars/heavanilli

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  23. haha someone should open/start a shampoo bar!

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  24. Wow. Excuse me while I google homemade deodorant!

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  25. Homemade deodorant that really works? I'm interested!:)

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  26. Ha! Pooplosions are the worst! It happened once at the gym child watch and the lady handed her to me with her arms extended out. Are cloth diapers cheaper? Diaper rash? Stinkier than disposable?? You still use wipes, right?

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  27. This is a great post (ok, I'm biased, but...)! You've hit the nail on the head..."going green" doesn't necessarily have to mean revolutionizing your lifestyle all at once. Making little changes here or there (like switching to a shampoo bar!) is the most practical and sustainable way to live greener, if you ask me.

    Some of us might be cut out for taking the plunge all at once, but if you're like me and you're pretty married to all the little conveniences of modern life (ahem...paper towel!!), then purging them from your life all at the same time would probably result in a meltdown and resentment of the green movement all-together. But making changes little by little- *that's* how we can forge a new lifestyle in a thoughtful, gentle way that is practical and permanent.

    It all starts with one change- a shampoo bar, perhaps- and who knows where you'll be in a year! I'm always amazed when I look back at the year and count all the little ways we have cut back on our consumption and waste (without even really realizing it, because we took it one step at a time.) :)

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  28. Hi Sharon

    Just happened to stumble upon your blog from Cup of Jo and I have to say I love your blog! You do such amazing things with your kids and NYC is one of the place to visit and live in on my bucket list! :)

    I have not tried Shampoo bar yet but I might go and hunt for some at our local Lush store and maybe even be tempted to try it out just for the sake of trying. LOL.

    xxfelicakes

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  29. Wow never thought of that. Will totally have to try it or feature it in an upcoming issue!


    Minted Magazine


    mintedmag.com

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  30. Hey Sharon (love your blog btw!)

    First off your hair looks really cute here! What I shot!!! You've inspired me to look into shampoo bars, and since I'm an etsy addict I'll check them out over there.

    Packaging is HUGE for me, it makes me cringe how much packaging everything comes in! I worked retail (anthro) at one point and it's insane how everything has to be wrapped in plastic coming into the US and then it's not even recycled! And then the customer buys it and puts it into a paper/plastic shopping bag and then they might wrap it as a gift- even more waste. anywho, lol it's something I think about ALL the time and my purchases can be swayed by how much packing an item has. Have you heard of the site "My plastic free life" by Beth Terry? She documents her quest to be plastic free since 2007!

    2 ways we go green:
    Cloth diapers (15 months in and going strong!)
    canvas shopping bags, buying vintage, for us and for our daughter (ebay, etsy, consignment stores)

    I also blog about "Green Living" on occasion on my blog: tiptoethrough.blogspot.com

    ~abigail

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  31. I use cloth wipes (with water) which are infinitely superior to disposable wipes. The cloth wipes won over my husband long before the cloth diapers. You wash them with the dipes -- no biggie. Cloth diapers are way cheaper and possibly way WAY cheaper than disposables, as long as you don't go nutso buying one million of the most expensive diapers. I figured I would come out ahead switching my child at one-year-old even if he was the only child I cloth diapered. Now that I'm on my third child, I have saved oodles of money. My husband loves to think about how much money we save each month not buying disposables.

    I think cloth diapers are less stinky than disposables. When I use disposables on vacation, I really notice how bad the pee stinks. Poop always stinks, of course.

    Diaper rash seems about the same to me. Some folks say switching to cloth cleared up rashes -- some say it created rashes. My kids have mostly had diaper rash in reaction to contact with their own poop. I haven't had any problems with rashes from pee. If you change your kid not very often, they might get more rash with cloth b/c it feels wetter, but if your kid's bum reacts to the numerous weirdo ingredients in disposables, cloth might help your kid have fewer rashes. You also want to be sure you use a detergent that won't bug your babe's bum. My kids have very sensitive skin (eczema from my husband), and I haven't had any problems with cloth.

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  32. I adore my cloth diapers. I was ambivalent initially, and now I'm an advocate!

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  33. I had to say thanks, Sharon. I make my own shampoo {dry}. I read this post when you wrote it and dismissed it, {with both of us in grad school, my husband and I don't buy frivolously, especially when it's only for the adults.} BUT... I got this particular shampoo bar as a Mother's Day gift {evidently my adoration for you blog is not a secret, lol. Possibly because I featured it on my own as a May Fave thing.} Oh. My. Buddha. I adore it! You were so right and I was so wrong. Thanks for the recommendation!

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  34. Oo, I didn't even know that shampoo bars were a thing! Thanks for sharing, I'm definitely going to check this out.

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