Turn your household ecofriendly one step at a time


Paige Zezulka / Clarion

Switch the plastic shampoo and conditioner bottles for some environmentally friendly bar soap.

Paige Zezulka, Copy Editor

With Earth Day being right around the corner, it is the perfect time to think about some simple things we can change in our households to help reduce our carbon footprint.

Obviously, change is not always easy, especially when it comes to saving our planet. But small steps are always a great starting point.

I recently began to try to reduce as much plastic as I can in my home. Instead of overwhelmingly swapping everything at once to become ecofriendly, I began with one product I use a lot of: soap.

The bottles of shampoo, conditioner and body wash that once filled my shower have now been replaced with bar soap.

The first thing I did was find a local store to buy the product from. There are plenty of options available in Madison. My go-to shops are Community Pharmacy and The Soap Opera on State Street.

A lot of reasons for my past lack of going “green” has been the price tag of ecofriendly products. Don’t get me wrong, some things are a bit on the pricier side. But you do not have to change all of your products at once.

I promise, starting with bar soap won’t hurt your bank account. If anything, it will help it; because bar soap tends to be cheaper than bottled.

Either way, price over pollution is sometimes the cost.

Remember, you are buying a product that leaves no trace on earth! Bar soap dissolves as it is being used, unlike bottles that sit in landfills or even worse oceans after use.

Even the packaging of bar soap is biodegradable. Instead of plastic, bar soap is packaged in cardboard, paper, shrink wrap and some are even bare. All these options are far better than plastic bottles that liquid soap is stored in.

According to The United States Environmental Protection Agency, it takes over 100-400 years for plastic to decompose in a landfill. Whereas cardboard only takes a few months. Not only does plastic take a lot of effort to decompose, it also takes 20 times more energy to create plastic packaging verse cardboard or paper, per Insider Health.

There are myths that say, bar soap collects bacteria as it sits out in the open when it’s not being used. Though, this statement hasn’t been proven. Bar soap actually tends to be more efficient when it comes to killing bacteria due to the friction of the bar on an individual’s skin.

A downfall is that bar soap may tend to dry out skin and hair due to its high PH levels and its lack of moisturizer. But, unlike liquid soap, bar soap has less ingredients that reduce the potential risk of harming our bodies and surroundings.

Rinsing off bar soap is also much easier than rinsing off sudsy liquid. This becomes a plus because it results in lower water intake when showering. So not only would you be reducing your plastic intake, but you would also be reducing your water intake as well with this option.

Whether you switch to bar soap or not, try to find something in your household this Earth Day to turn green. You may think that one person’s soap bottles won’t make a difference to the environment, but you are wrong.

Our planet needs everyone to take that first step, even if it is a small one.