According to new research, most hair care routines are harming the planet, producing a much larger carbon footprint than any other beauty ritual.
While we here at Private Label Skincare Florida are striving to be fully sustainable, no component manufacturer to date has come up with a full solution to this problem. What with only 50% of bathroom waste being recycled (compared to 90% of kitchen waste), it’s no wonder more of us are becoming increasingly concerned about things like plastic consumption in the beauty industry.
But the growing awareness isn't only spurring us as individuals, to think consciously about our own plastic beauty waste. It is encouraging major brands to address their eco-footprint, too, with many turning to more sustainable and environmentally friendly ways to both produce and package their products.
While it's difficult to go entirely plastic-free, small lifestyle tweaks do add up. So in a bid to try and cut down on plastic use, and to help anyone out that is trying to do the same, I decided, with the help of our incredible Chemist, and our marketing people, by finding an alternative to bottled shampoo for a more eco-friendly, usually plastic-free alternative. Enter: solid shampoo and conditioner bars. The old soap bars of the past were full of lye and animal fat mainly and were very harsh. While manufacturers of soap bars sought to make them milder, the pH and harsh chemicals prevail to this day for many brands.
A popular way to cut down on your bathroom beauty packaging (and save space inside your travel bag), solid shampoo bars, enlist the same ingredients as your trusty bottled shampoo, such as moisturizing, frizz-fighting shea butter and argan oil. But they tend to use less to no water and much less unnecessary cardboard or plastic wrapping. Who wants to pay for water? We are proud of the fact that we don’t use water!
That said, they have a bit of a bad rap in beauty. Some believe that they don't lather up or clean hair as well as 'normal' shampoo. Then there's the argument that they are slippery and messy when wet, and no one wants sludge ruining their bathroom selfie.
It's no secret that the beauty industry takes a toll on the environment. From PR mailers to surplus packaging to sunscreen snuffing out coral reefs, the picture often feels pretty bleak. But it's not all bad, especially if we're willing to take a few steps to rid the environment of our debris—like, for instance, cutting back on packaging from shampoo in favor of a handy bar. If only a small percentage of consumers turned to these bars, it would make a huge impact.
Shampoo bars are exactly what they sound like—no bottle, all bar! —and can last up to 80 washes, meaning they outlast two to three bottles of your favorite shampoo. An extra perk: most shampoo bars boast all-natural ingredients with no chemicals or scary additives that damage locks.
The idea of a conditioner bar or a purple shampoo bar has not been done by many to date, and those who are trying, have not as yet figured out how to make the proper pH balanced product for the hair or body for that matter.
Making the Switch to a Zero Waste Solid Shampoo & Conditioner
Many people don't live close enough to a refill store to refill liquid products regularly, so shampoo and conditioner bars fulfill the need for plastic-free hair care.
However, one of the most frequent questions we have been asked is how to find zero waste shampoo and conditioner bars that actually work, and don’t cause gummy buildup and stringy hair.
It's hard enough to go zero waste without having to deal with bad hair days.
We created our newest shampoo and conditioner to address a need for, FUNCTIONAL solid shampoo and conditioner to replace one more plastic bottle in the bathroom. Our solid bars are the highest quality shampoos and conditioners, without the excess water or the wasteful packaging, and are made from natural and organic ingredients like our other hair care products, and are pH balanced to boot!
Shampoo without the harsh ingredients.
Private Label Skincare Florida’s formulas are sulfate-free, which means it will get your hair clean without harsh ingredients. The cleansers we use gently clean the hair and scalp without stripping away your natural skin oils. The experience of using a shampoo bar is different than a liquid shampoo.
Having problems with excessively oily or flaky scalp?
The problem with SLES ( Sodium Laureth Sulfate), and SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) is that they are really great at removing oils, which means they can strip away all of your natural scalp oils, causing your scalp to produce too many oils. That is why conventional drugstore shampoos need to be used every day. It's a vicious cycle. Your scalp is dried out by the shampoo - it produces excess oils to replenish moisture - you need to shampoo by the next day because your scalp is oily.
With some people, instead of oiliness, strong detergent shampoos can cause flakiness and itchiness similar to dandruff. Part of this is due to the pH of the products. All of Private Label Skincare Florida formulas are pH balanced to keep the acid mantel in place.
A note on SCS (hint - it's not Sulfate-free!):
Several zero waste shampoo brands we have seen claim to be sulfate-free while using SCS (Sodium Cocoyl Sulfate). Unfortunately, these brands don't understand how SCS is made. It is generally composed of about 60% Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, plus some other detergents. So if you're using SCS-based shampoo, you may also be experiencing irritation and overly drying your hair. The bottom line is SCS contains sulfates, so any brand trying to tell you otherwise doesn't understand the chemical composition of the ingredients they are using.
Lather in the hands or on the head?
We recommend lathering in the hands and then applying the lather to the hair for more brittle hair types.
If your hair is more resilient, you can lather the bar directly on the head. Rub the bar directly onto wet hair to maximize the amount of suds that get lathered into the hair! Our bar has a rich, thick, luxurious lather, especially when you lather twice.
A little bit goes a long way so don't overdo it!
Rinse it completely.
Unlike a liquid shampoo, suds from a shampoo bar might not rinse out as quickly, so make sure to rinse thoroughly, all parts of your scalp too. Unlike many zero waste shampoos, ours works perfectly in hard water and won't make your hair stringy or gummy with buildup.
What about conditioner?
Tired of natural shampoo companies that want you to douse your head in vinegar?
We have formulated a lovely, lightweight, quality solid conditioner. This solid conditioner just needs to be gently swiped on wet hair. Use your fingers to distribute the conditioner throughout your lengths and ends.
In general, avoid conditioning your scalp, our shampoo is gentle enough that conditioning the scalp should be unnecessary.
Leave in the conditioner for up to 2 minutes to give a deep condition, or just rinse out immediately if you're in a hurry.
Keep it dry.
To make your solid bars last longer, store them in an area of your bathroom or shower where it can dry fully between washes, and use a soap lift to keep it from sitting in water.
Shampoo less often!
As you transition to a gentle natural shampoo bar, you’ll find that your scalp produces less oil (because harsh detergents are not drying out your scalp). Less oil means you can go more days between shampooing. Many of our customers are able to transition away from daily washes to once every few days or even once a week!
Color treated hair is different.
We don't use dimethicone, the main silicone ingredient in most products for colored hair. Dimethicone makes a heavy coating of silicone on the hair shaft and can hide chemically damaged hair. We instead use butters and oils in our conditioner to actually condition and help with damage.
So our conditioner bar is extremely gentle, but it’s not guaranteed to flatter heavily bleached/ colored hair by completely coating the damaged area.
Some people with color damaged hair like to do a deep overnight oil treatment every few weeks to help replenish oils in damaged & colored hair. You can even use a hair serum (beard oil works on all hair too) to give extra moisture every day. We also have shine drops, and other conditioning products when needed.
Our shampoo is pH balanced to reduce the amount of color that washes out each time, but keep in mind that washing with hot water and washing frequently will increase the speed at which your color washes out, especially for semi permanent colors like pink or lavender.
We are now in the process of adding other colors, like our purple shampoo and conditioner bars, and adding red, brown, and black for a quick color refresher. It should be very clear at this point that we NEVER move backward, but always are on the cutting edge of any new idea in the personal care market!