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From toothpaste and shampoo to deo: Solid cosmetics are booming in bathrooms

20201012 Solid soap
Good for the environment and for your skin, solid cosmetics are set to take over your bathroom cabinet. Image: Shutterstock/marekusz via AFP Relaxnews.

Have you tried switching to solid cosmetics? If not, then there is no time like the present, as these solid formats are the shape of the future when it comes to beauty routines. It is out with shelves of bottles and endless ingredient lists, and in with new generation shampoos, conditioners, toothpastes and soaps that are light on packaging — and preservatives — for a revamped, beauty routine that is good for your skin and the planet.

Old school soap is where it’s at

The move towards more responsible and eco-friendly consumer habits can sometimes often mean taking a step backwards. Cosmetics are no exception with the solid bars of soap used by our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents slowly creeping back into bathrooms in recent years. And for good reason: these soaps — suitable for face and body — don’t need any plastic packaging and are kind to skin, so long as you stick to natural varieties.

Solid soaps contain virtually no water unlike liquid shower gels, which is good news for the environment and also means there is no need for preservatives or chemical additives. With soap, the endless lists of ingredients typically found in standard shower gel labels are largely simplified, and generally more transparent, with a majority of raw and natural ingredients that are less likely to damage your health.

Another plus point is the standard solid format is, by definition, portable. That can help cut unnecessary consumption because there is no need to buy special travel formats for trips away. Moreover, they are generally suitable for facial use with gentler formulations than body-specific versions.

Soap gets an update

Some of the oldest and best-known soaps are Aleppo soap and Marseille soap, which are mostly made from vegetable oils. Today, however, there is a slew of solid soaps to choose from that are each more fun and original than the next.

Forget your grandmother’s dull old wash bars, as today’s soaps come in all kinds of vibrant versions and do not have to rely on chemicals or potentially unhealthy ingredients to put the fun into bath-time. Just look at the endless options from Lush, a brand known for its colorful solid cosmetics that come in all kinds of wacky shapes.

While there are plenty of options from specialist or niche brands (Lano, Seaweed Bath Co and Nubian Heritage, among others), recent months have also seen a growing number of launches from mainstream brands like Garnier (for solid shampoos), and Love Beauty and Planet (soaps and shampoos). There are now enough choices out there to ensure every consumer can find their own accessible solid beauty routine.

Soaps are not the only products using this “innovative” format, since nearly everything in your bathroom cabinet can now be switched to solid, from face wash to shampoo and conditioner, not to mention makeup remover, deodorant and toothpaste. It can even be easy and cheap to make solid cosmetics yourself thanks to the many tutorials online. CC


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