Doing better in the bathroom

Over the past few months, I’ve been using up all the plastic containers of lotions, potions and promises floating around the bathroom cupboard. I was reusing the ones with spray nozzles to hold homemade alternatives, then impatience and a chance conversation at the local chemist led me to better alternatives.


Who knew brown could be so pretty? New brown bottles, old clear jar.

I discovered it’s possible to buy empty glass bottles with lids or spray nozzles (still plastic, but hey) at the chemists here in Switzerland. Now I can restock my own bottles without wondering what exactly could be leaching from a plastic bottle into the contents.

From left to right – homemade face toner, homemade deodorant, almond oil, and a clear jar of homemade toothpowder. The almond oil (decanted from a larger glass bottle) uses a pump nozzle, not spray. I use it as face and body moisturiser.

Today I’ll give shout-outs to two women who have been doing this for a lot longer than me, and their knowledge has cut down the trial and error guesswork involved in creating alternatives to store-bought products that actually work.

First, cheers to the grand dame of zero waste, Bea from Zero Waste Home, for the toothpowder recipe – I’ve only been using it since the beginning of July and don’t mind it at all. It takes a bit of getting used to as it doesn’t foam like normal toothpaste, but they say the brushing part is more important than the actual paste. I might try making a mouthwash too, as the powder doesn’t really give your mouth that “all-over” fresh feeling, just the teeth. But at the moment, I’m loathe to add to the morning routine. Ok, I’m too lazy.

Second, a big hello and thank you to Kathryn from Going Zero Waste for the deodorant recipe. I had to tweak this one a bit by adding less salt, because if it doesn’t dissolve completely in the heating process (be patient! I was too impatient), the salt grains can clog the spray nozzle. And in another tweak, I doubled the tea tree oil. Love it! For the past month, I’ve been coming home from work and practically shoving my armpit in Leo’s face, asking “Does this smell?” or words to such effect! And thankfully, for him, it doesn’t. 🙂 I don’t sweat a lot too, which is lucky.

So, the clogging of the nozzle in my old plastic bottle while making my second batch of deodorant was what prompted me to look for an alternative container, and I’m so happy I found the bottles. There’s always a positive, right?!

And do you know what else I love? The 100ml bottle cost 3 Swiss Francs, and the two small 50ml bottles cost 2.50 each. An investment of 8 Francs now has me set for a very, very long time. The ingredients involved to make these products are also cheap, so it’s a win win all round.

Can you buy empty bottles from chemists where you live? If you’re keen to give homemade options a try, it’s well worth asking.

Wishing you a wonderful day.

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