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Our 2020 Guide to Shampoo & Conditioner Bars

shampoo and conditioner bars

Switching over to shampoo and conditioner bars is an excellent way to stay committed to living a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. These bars are really gaining momentum with many artisan companies producing some truly wonderful products.

It’s worth noting before we begin that shampoo bars can be known as:

  • Shampoo Bars
  • Conditioner Bars
  • Solid Shampoo and Conditioner
  • Organic Shampoo and Conditioner
  • Eco Friendly Shampoo Bars

What are the Problems with Bottled Shampoos and Conditioners?

Many ingredients used in more traditional beauty and personal care products have been shown to contain dangerous toxins that can harm fragile ocean ecosystems and marine life over time.

Soaps, shampoos, conditioners and other hair care products are washed down the drain into our sewer systems.

These toxins will eventually reach nearby water sources including our beautiful oceans.

The environment is further impacted negatively when all of those plastic bottles containing shampoos and conditioners are tossed into the trash.

The bottles eventually end up in already overcrowded landfills where they remain for far too many years, decades and even centuries.

An Introduction to Shampoo and Conditioner Bars

Solid in form, shampoo and conditioner bars are much the same as a bar of soap.

The main ingredients in shampoo bars are usually very similar, most importantly these days are made from natural products.

Bars come in different fragrances and in many cases different natural oils are used to help nourish hair.

Plastic packaging has been removed with bars being wrapped using biodegradable or recycled paper.

These innovative personal care products are far more environmentally friendly than there bottled equivalents – more on that later.

Benefits of Solid Shampoo Bars

Some of these benefits for using shampoo/conditioner bars include:

  • Eco-Friendly, no plastic bottles and packaging
  • No toxic artificial ingredients
  • Comes in a variety of special formulas suited for every hair type
  • Easier for travelling – no leaks, much less bulky
  • Similar in cost or less than bottled equivalents
  • Make your own for even greater cost savings
  • Using some shampoo bars means you do not need a separate conditioner
  • Natural ingredients lesson skin/eye irritants, gentler on delicate skin
  • Less soapy lather so won’t strip natural scalp/skin oils like other brands can
  • Last longer – up to 80 uses

Why Are Shampoo Bars Environmentally Friendly?

Shampoo bars are just natural in every way.

From the natural ingredients used to the plant and organic oils used to keep hair in great condition right through to the packaging.

Another consideration is that since bar styled shampoos require a bit of lather effort, less shampoo and/or conditioner is wasted and washed down the drain.

This combined with the fact that in most cases bars last longer than equivalents means that overall you’ll use less product.

Using less of the product of course makes shampoo bars environmentally friendly.

Solid Shampoo and Conditioner for Every Hair Type

There is a myth that shampoo bars are not suitable for all types of hair.

This might have been the case back in the 1950’s but today, there are bar shampoos and conditioners ideal for just about any hair type and styling need.

Like anything else we buy, it can take some trial and error attempts to find the best shampoo and conditioner bars that will meet your hair type’s unique care requirements.

The great news is that as well as getting the right product for your hair you’ll also be able to personalise it in terms of fragrance, colour and bar size.

How Much do Solid Shampoo Bars Cost?

The costs of using natural shampoo and/or conditioner bars do vary depending on the brand, size of bar and other factors.

But how do they stack up against their bottled alternatives ?

Since bar shampoos are not made with liquids then poured into a bottle, the bars should last for a very long time if stored away from moisture.

This reduces the overall costs over time.

Also, solid bars made of shampoo and conditioner ingredients take less to be as effective as liquid shampoo and conditioner products are.

A little truly goes a long way with these eco-friendly and cost-effective personal care product options.

If you want to save even more on shampoo and conditioner you can opt to make their own organic bars instead.

This can further dramatically reduce costs.

With bar shampoos and conditioners, there is no need for plastic storage and shipping containers or packaging reducing costs further.

Make Your Own Organic Shampoo Bar

If you have the time and are dedicated to leading a greener lifestyle you may want to consider the option of making your own organic shampoo and conditioner bars.

You’ll be able to realise all of the possible bar shampoo benefits including low cost.

There are many fantastic organic shampoo bar recipes easily found on the Internet.

The idea of making your own bars is not really something new, as our grandparents and great grandparents used these types of soaps and other cleansing bars going back decades.

However, soap bars from yesteryear often contained harsh cleansing agents that were bad for skin and the surrounding lands and water supplies.

If you do make your own solid shampoo and conditioner bars do make sure you pick a shampoo and/or conditioner bar recipe that uses only natural based ingredients and additives for the best results.

Also do note that contrary to some organic brand claims of using zero water in their bar shampoos, some water must be used during the creation process.

However, these bars do use far less precious water than their liquid counterparts especially if they are made by hand.

How To Store Shampoo Solid Bars To Extend Their Life

Shampoo and conditioner bars do require some care to extend their lifetime.

The bar should be stored in a container that drains the water/moisture after being used in the shower or bathtub.

Otherwise, be sure to carefully dry off the bar following use.

Remember to pay attention to what is laying underneath these bar shampoos.

Note that soap indented areas on most showers and bathtubs tend to pool water underneath.

This can result in a more rapid melting of the bar, as it will naturally begin to disintegrate when exposed to moisture and water over time.

There are some great bar soap type containers sold on the market that can help to keep your shampoo and conditioner bars safe for a longer period of time.

Travelling Is Easier with Earth Friendly Shampoo Bars

Many travel enthusiasts invest in smaller containers to store their everyday grooming essentials like soaps, shampoos, hair conditioners or other grooming products.

Imagine how much waste the hotel industry is responsible for due to single-use plastic shampoo/conditioner bottles.

A good travel alternative for transporting your favourite shampoos and other hair products is to utilise the bar shampoos and conditioners instead of liquid bottles.

Bars of shampoo pack neatly, they take up far less space and shouldn’t leak during transport.

Remember, baggage areas at airports, bus stations and trains often require the movement of luggage several times during a trip.

With each move, the potential for leakage drastically increases.


Making the switch to bar shampoos and conditioners can save money.

Solid shampoo and conditioner bars are eco-friendly

Bars of shampoo are easy to transport, are almost leak-proof and take up less space and storage.

You can make your own

Bars are gentler for use on babies, frail elders and those suffering with autoimmune conditions or allergies.

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