It gets dark at 4:30 PM already, so yeah, winter is coming. In a couple of weeks, I will be travelling to see my family for holidays! This time around I am well versed in how to pack my zero waste toiletries. At the moment, my hygiene routine involves a good mix of DIY products and some natural cosmetics in somewhat recyclable packaging. I am still experimenting as well as making compromises, I guess that process never ends. 🙂
Deodorant in a spray bottle.
I still prefer the classic one-ingredient baking soda deodorant recipe. I mix it in boiling water and carry it around in a spray bottle. It’s great because it’s convenient to use I don’t get summed on the airport. Not that it has happened to me, but I know better than to run around with a jar full of powder. I buy bulk baking soda in Orginal Unverpackt.
Sometimes I also throw in my refillable perfume.
A soap bar in a Sisak bag.
A soap bar is the most versatile item I can imagine in a zero waste routine. I use it under the shower to clean my body, when I am shaving, to wash my hands and sometimes even my hair. It’s great to travel with, especially because you can share one soap bar with others. If I am backpacking I can also use it to hand-wash my clothes or if camping, kitchen utensils. I buy any sort of locally available bar of soap without palm oil or any weird ingredients, preferably unpackaged or at least packaged in paper. I like to keep a bar in my Sisak bag, which is great for the exfoliating skin as well as for saving on soap! Do you know how it’s hard to use those small soap ends? Well, collect them inside this little bag and they’ll be easy to use under the shower.
Of course, I carry around my bamboo toothbrush (like this one). It is not necessary, but I love to keep it in a toothbrush case, to protect it and keep it clean – it has holes on both ends (like this one). My gums are sensitive, so I haven’t settled on a toothpaste yet. I am usually using toothpaste powder in pills, bought in bulk. It is great for travelling because you can count them in advance. I keep them in a small container or a jar. At the moment I ran out, so I am trying out a natural toothpaste, as in the picture. Sometimes I also use turmeric spice (German: kurkuma) as a teeth whitener. It’s surprisingly effective! In most recipes, it is mixed with coconut oil because it’s antibacterial, but because it is so fatty it makes the sink dirty, I tend to just mix it with water.
Gotta love the menstrual cup, it’s just so comfy and useful (like this one). It is especially practical when travelling! It usually comes in a small pouch, to keep it in when it’s not in use. I usually bring it back to before I sterilize it if I don’t travel more than a month, of course.
A safety razor is great (like this one), but it can be a trouble when travelling because the blades are not allowed in the hand luggage on the plane. There are some workarounds: you can put the blade in your checked-in baggage if you have that option. / If you don’t fly, then it’s not a problem. / You can keep some blades at your destination (if you are visiting your family, for example). / You can bring something else for hair removal, like an epilator. / You can give up on shaving for a while. / You can try a more permanent hair removal option beforehand (Paris-to-go wrote on sugar waxing here). Any other ideas?
Also, I keep my safety razor in a small box it came with, which I highly recommend. My first safety razor was purchased second-hand and it actually broke during travels! It was really old, but I also stored it loosely in my bag, so lesson learned!
I am usually trying out different oil blends for my face and body, according to its seasonal needs. For travelling, I’d say a small jar of any oil (like olive oil) will do, but make sure it closes well!
However, since air is so dry and cold at the moment, I actually purchased a fat creme in a metal container from an affordable natural cosmetics line. A great resource if you are interested in products’ ingredients, is Codecheck. It’s in German, but it has a nice visual representation of good vs. bad ingredients of the product you are researching.
Don’t forget to pack some essential tools, like a clipper, hair gum, brush/comb and some DIY handkerchiefs always come in handy.
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