My plastic replacement for September

Hello Dear Reader,

I started on the road to using less plastic when I heard about Plastic free July from these two fantastic blogs that I read, passionately. I have started out replacing one plastic item per month, as I feel, for me, slow and steady will win this "use less plastic"race. This month I have chosen another really simple swap. I have started using a good old fashioned, real cake of soap instead of a plastic bottle of shower gel. Now, we have been using plastic bottled shower gel for absolutely years and really couldn't remember the last time we used a bar of soap.

I guess I started using shower gel when they become more popular than a bar of soap and I also heard that soap caused more soap scum build up in the shower recess.  If cleaning the shower is anything to go by, I haven't noticed any more soap build up while using the bar of soap compared to shower gel. However, it's only been 4 weeks so time will tell, I guess.

I splurged on a good cake of handmade soap while we were up at Montville for our wedding anniversary at the beginning of August. Maybe it's the excellent ingredients in this soap that is preventing that soap build up in the shower or maybe it's because we no longer have children splashing soapy, bubbly lather over the shower recess! We'll see.

I cut this big slab of Sandalwood soap into four pieces as I felt it would last longer in smaller, more manageable pieces. It has the most delightful aroma and a very soft lather. 

When I bought the soap, it was wrapped in paper and put into a small paper carry bag, so no plastic was involved in getting this lovely bar of soap home. 

So, tell me, what do you prefer, shower gel or a bar of soap? Have you ever made your own soap?


  1. It's funny that I've always been happy to use a bar of soap in the shower, but I hate the mess of a bar soap at a sink so I always prefer the liquid there!!

  2. We always use bars of soap, otherwise our small children just waste the liquid version. I've made soap once, a version very similar to the one one Down to Earth blog. It was nice but rather soft even after a very long time curing. If I make it again I will adjust the ingredients to try to make a harder bar of soap. Maybe less olive oil and more coconut or some tallow. Just make sure when using home made soap to keep it out of the water and use a soap tray as it will turn into liquid sludge.

  3. We only use bars of soap but seem to be in the minority. I've never made soap but I save the little
    end bits you get and when I have enough I either chop them up for homemade washing powder or
    soak them and mash them together to create a new bar ("Frankensoap" since it's bits from different

  4. Next you'll be making soap, Its so easy and fun! We love my homemade soap, and you can make it smell like whatever you want! Great work on your plastic reduction, I have cut a lot, but there's always room to improve.

  5. I've only ever used bar soap in the shower, I tried the liquid soap once, and I found it didn't was off properly and left my skin feeling oily, so I didn't keep using it. I have used liquid hand wash at the sink, but the kids use so much of it that I have gone back to bar soap there too. I have made soap a few times, but never seem to find the time to keep us in a constant supply of it.

  6. I always make our soap for the shower - it's the best and safest choice. However I do prefer flowing soap at the sink for hand washing - less mess (but can and do make homemade flowing soap also). I think the soap scum on tubs are from the rubbish that is in commercial soaps (and have been for some decades). I don't have any scum using homemade soap.

  7. We always use bar soap for showers and for a while used it for handwashing but found it messy so we now use liquid handpump soap that I dilute now. I think too that some shower gels might contain those plastic microbeads that are now polluting our oceans so great choice to change. I love the soap store in Maleny ... whenever I am up there I buy some of their seconds if they have any. I can never tell what the flaw in it is. Always smells just a divine and lathers up beautifully. Meg


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