Save Water with a Greener Shower

Photo: istockphoto.com/Anatoly Tiplyashin
10 ways to reduce water use and make your shower more environmentally friendly

10. Avoid using products in plastic containers
I know it’s hard to avoid plastic in our everyday lives but you can search for alternatives. If you’re using body wash that is packaged in plastic try switching to bar soap. Usually soap is packaged in a cardboard box that can biodegrade or be recycled.

9. Switch to plant-based ingredients
Whether it’s your shampoo, bar of soap of even bathroom cleaning products, this will be healthier for you and your family and you’ll be reducing your impact on the planet as well. The many chemicals found in our everyday household products have a major effect on our water and our health, so switching to a plant-based, biodegradable product will really help.

8. DIY!
If you’re crafty, try creating our own soap, shampoo, etc. This way you will know exactly what’s in your product and it usually is more cost effective. There are many great resources online, such as Youtube, and soap making websites that can help you get started!

7. Simplify
Instead of having a specialized product for each part of your body, re-evaluate whether you actually need it. For me, I use my handmade soap for shaving as well, saving me dough and space in my small shower.

6. Short ‘n’ sweet
Keeping your showers short is one of the best ways to conserve water in the bathroom. If you’re used to a 20 minute shower, try limited your routine by a minute each day until it takes less than 10. Use a timer. If you’re used to a 10 minute shower, try a 5 minute one. You get the picture.

5. Low-flowin’
Make a small investment in a low-flow shower head. All you have to do is install it and you’re being kinder to the planet! Buy one with a flow rate of 2.5 gallons per minute — they come in all different styles, from sleek and modern to simple and practical. Click here for some helpful FAQs.

4. Looking glass
Ever opened up a new shower curtain and that chemical odor nearly knocked you down? Vinyl shower curtains are actually very toxic and full of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), phthalates and metals. A study has shown that some chemicals remain in the air 28 days after the shower curtain had been hung! And these shower curtains do not last forever — except in the landfill. In fact you’ll probably have to buy a new every year. Try using a water-resistant hemp shower curtain, instead. It can be put in the wash. Or try installing a glass shower door instead. It may be a larger initial investment but it will save a lot of vinyl going to the landfill. Plus it can really update the look of your bathroom!

3. In the Navy
A navy shower is where you turn off the water while you lather up. This can save a ton of unused water from going down the drain! You can also install a shut-off device that reduces shower flow to a trickle while you lather or shave. If you really want to be hardcore, try a “traditional” navy shower and keep it under two minutes!

2. Plants need H2O
Place a bucket in the shower with you and collect the run off water to water your plant or garden. This is a little extreme, but why not do it? Plants don’t care where the water comes from! Just make sure that you are using a natural, biodegradable soap so the roots of the plant won’t get damaged.

1. Sharing is caring
This is my favorite tip... share your shower routine with your significant other. This will not only save water (unless you get distracted), it can give you two some valuable time together, especially if you have a busy work schedule or have children. Some of these tips are more attainable than others but adopting just a few of them can help you conserve water or reduce your impact on the planet on shower at a time. Happy showering!