Fralsa Collective

Swapping the bottles for the bars; our top 10 picks for solid shampoos

Image: Christopher Robin

With 550 million empty shampoo and conditioner bottles being thrown away in the US annually, there has been a rise in bar alternatives. Bars not only help cut back on our plastic consumption but also last longer due to the higher concentration of ingredients. Bottled shampoos are composed of 80-90% water, so when you reduce that down, you are left with a solid bar, which can last up to 2-3 times longer than its liquid counterpart!

With only 9% of all plastic produced getting recycled, the utopian dream of an efficient recycling system has been clouded by an overriding reality of consumer habits. As the consumer, it is not our fault that we are surrounded by and tempted to buy products in plastic bottles. However, we can try to make conscious choices to cut back our plastic use. The shocking fact with plastic bottles is that they can last up to 450 years in the environment, and even when they do break down, they break down into microplastics which can take hundreds to thousands of years to decompose!

We can help lessen the amount of plastic going into our environment, and one way is switching to solid shampoo bars. Shampoo bars are an easily available alternative and are great if you are looking to travel light, be more resourceful, boost the health of your hair, and of course, save the planet. So we have put together a list of our 10 favorite shampoo bars for you to choose from. Additionally, when you are choosing one, bear in mind they all come with their conditioner counterparts, so don’t be shy to buy both as you push forward towards that all important plastic-free shower routine!

Image: Christopher Robin

Christopher Robin, Hydrating Shampoo Bar with Aloe Vera, $22

This 100% vegan shampoo bar is 100% natural and 100% artisanal. It boasts natural ingredients including castor oil and aloe vera. It has a compact design that boasts convenience, and ease of use, meaning you can take it with you wherever you go. It will also last longer than standard, bottled shampoo, so your hair can enjoy that hydrated nourished feeling, for longer!

Image: Humankind

 Humankind, Shampoo Bar, $15

This shampoo bar prides itself on nourishing both your hair and the planet. It’s vegan, natural formula is ethically made, and 100% carbon neutral. The bars are cold-pressed which allows them to retain more glycerin, helping to moderate pH levels which is beneficial for sensitive skin. 

The bars are 100% plastic-free and are shipped in a recycled paper box using soy-based ink. Buying from them is an investment, not only for your beauty but also for the beauty of the planet. 

Image: Odacité

 Odacité, 552M Soap Free Shampoo Bar, $29

Blending the likes of cupuaçu butter and coconut, argan, and castor oils, this shampoo bar works for thin, straight, curly, frizzy, thick, or color-treated hair. Their bars are 100% natural, vegan, and gluten-free. 

If you are looking for a toxin-free alternative to bottled shampoo, then look no further. This shampoo bar prioritizes purity and prides itself on being a super-natural option for your hair.

Image: ethique

 Ethique, Pinkalicious, Shampoo Bar, $15

As with most of ethique’s products, this shampoo bar is composed of organic, virgin, fair trade coconut oil and cocoa butter along with other naturally sourced ingredients. This soap-free, pH-balanced bar is a great alternative to bottled shampoos, which involve more chemicals and toxins.

Additionally, by purchasing one of these soap bars, you are not only reducing your plastic consumption by 3 bottles each bar, but you are also saving 2750 milliliters of water.

Image: j.r.liggettherbal

J. R. Liggett’s, Herbal Formula Shampoo Bar, $7.49

Infused with olive, coconut, and castor oil, this shampoo infuses your hair with all-natural ingredients and is loaded with antioxidants, antiviral and antibacterial properties, to leave your scalp and hair, healthier and nourished. 

This brand is on a mission to create shampoo bars that have the environment and natural ingredients at its heart. They celebrate consciousness towards ecology, combining the likes of customer care, and environmental protection.

Image: unwrapped life

Unwrapped Life, The Balancer Shampoo Bar, $17.50

With 50-75 washes, these bars are equivalent to 2 bottles of shampoo. Emanating a sweet, but subtle floral citrus scent, they are color-safe, vegan, and cruelty-free. 

They help boost collagen production which can help strengthen your hair’s roots whilst also providing that essential hydration for your silky smooth hair. Perfect for travel and everyday use, they are a cost-effective, low waste swap.

Basin Charcoal Shampoo Bar, $8.99

This natural charcoal shampoo bar detoxifies unwanted impurities, promotes healthy hair, and will make your hair shine whilst also bringing volume. Floral scented and without a bottle, this shampoo will lower your footprint whilst also nourishing your hair.

Through the properties of activated bamboo charcoal, hair follicle strength is promoted, whilst also removing any built-up oils and pollutants. It lathers easily, and is one for the shopping list!

Image: meowmeowtweet

Meow Meow Tweet, Lavender Coconut Shampoo Bar, $12

Containing no additives, this floral scented soap will nourish not only your hair, but your whole body too. It is vegan, compostable, and plastic free! 

It contains moisturising hemp seed oil and coconut milk, it will condition and soften your hair naturally, leaving your hair shiny and with that glossy finish.

Image: the afro hair & skin co

The Afro Hair & Skin Company, Nurture Gentle Cleansing Shampoo Bar, $8.57

This bar, infused with botanical extracts of nettle and lavender, gently cleans away dirt and grime, leaving the hair looking cleansed and softened. The natural ingredients mean that no oils are stripped from your hair resulting in less excessive flaking and leaving you with a more healthy scalp.

The bar has avoided toxic ingredients and avoids that coated feeling produced by silicones. All you have to do is massage through your hair and you’ll be ready to go!

HiBar, Volumize Shampoo Bar, $13.95

This volumizing shampoo bar comes plastic-free (of course). It is vegan, with no animals being harmed in its production. It has a fresh citrus scent and its ingredients contain no soap, sulfates, parabens, silicones, or phthalates.

It works best for fine, thin, or lifeless hair, and adds definition to waves and curls. If you are looking to add some volume to your hair, look no further!

With so many beautiful alternatives to the bulky, wasteful plastic bottles that we’re used to, it’s hard to imagine not making the switch.  With the global demand for care products on the rise, it is essential we seek out those sustainable alternatives. The future is in our hands.  We are constantly learning how we can adapt our consumer habits so that we can live a more harmonious existence with our planet, and switching to more natural, plastic free shampoo and conditioner bars is a simple switch you can do today.  Turn your shower into a plastic-free haven.  

Story by: S. Buckley

Header Image: Christopher Robin