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The Environmental Impacts of Shampoo

Take a moment to think about all the people using shampoo in the world today. That’s a lot of shampoo. Now, think about what happens to all those bottles when the shampoo is gone. Think about the number of bottles discarded by salons and hotels. You see the problem.

And have you ever thought about what happens to the shampoo itself after it goes down the drain? It doesn’t magically disappear. All the dangerous chemicals like parabens and phthalates go right down the drain, too, where they linger in our water supply. 

It turns out that shampoo use has a pretty big impact on the environment.

Here’s why. 

A Plethora Of Plastic

The vast majority of shampoo is packaged in plastic bottles. It’s true that plastic can be recycled, but of the 380 million tons of plastic produced every year, only about 9% of it is actually recycled. The rest is thrown away. And more than 10 million tons of plastic waste is dumped into the ocean each year. In fact, it’s predicted that 30 years from now, there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean (by weight).
 
Plastic is particularly problematic because it never biodegrades. It simply continues to accumulate. And it’s impossible to get rid of plastic waste without using destructive means, like combustion and pyrolysis. That means that every shampoo bottle ever made is still around in some form, with the majority in landfills, the ocean, or littering the natural environment. 

Animals are often harmed or killed when they consume plastic waste or become trapped in it. And it makes its way into your body, too. It’s in our water, air, and food. According to the authors of a recent study, it’s now impossible to avoid ingesting plastic. 

Dangerous Compounds

Unfortunately, plastic isn’t the only thing we have to worry about with bottled shampoo. People tend to take an out-of-sight-out-of-mind approach when they wash their hair. Once shampoo slides down the drain, it’s gone forever, right? Wrong.

All the chemicals manufacturers use to help increase suds, add shine, or keep shampoo from spoiling make their way to wastewater treatment plants, where there is increasing evidence that they are not removed from the water.

Instead, chemicals like triclosan and phthalates build up in our bodies. For example, triclosan has been found in human breast milk and is known to be toxic to fish. And phthalates, which are frequently used in shampoos, have been correlated with reproductive problems in both humans and animals. 

So What Can You Do?

Swapping your shampoo bottles for bars like Viori is a big step. We never use plastic packaging, so you won’t be contributing to the ever-increasing load of plastic in our environment. Plus, they last longer than shampoo bottles, so you won’t need to purchase them as often. That means you’re helping to cut down on the carbon footprint involved in shipping, especially since bottled shampoo is mostly water. 

And as for dangerous chemicals? We would never! You won’t find anything harmful, like triclosan, phthalates, or parabens in our bars. We only use safe, natural, sustainable ingredients that won’t hurt you, our planet, or the animals with whom we share it. 

Ready to make the switch? Why not try our newest garden-inspired scent, Hua Bliss. Let us know what you think!



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