Monday, 20 August 2007

Mighty Shampoo Bar

The finest example of how some creativity, mixed with good intentions and a lot of hard-work can come together to produce an original piece of eco-art is Lush's patented shampoo bar.

Just one 55g bar is equivalent to three 250ml bottles of liquid shampoo*. The bar is compressed and then, to travel to our shops, is packed in a recycled cardboard box, with a couple of small sheets of greaseproof paper and a small bit of bubble wrap. There are forty bars per box.

In the shop, the bar is displayed completely unpackaged and can be taken home just like that, in a recycled paper bag or in a re-usable tin. So you can have zero waste, if you choose so, instead of three plastic bottles.

Last year Lush sold about one million shampoo bars and saved three million plastic bottles from being manufactured, transported and disposed of. But we're not just saving on plastic. Because the bars are more concentrated, lighter and lot less bulky, you need fifteen lorries to transport enough liquid shampoo to get the equivalent number of washes as that in one lorry full of shampoo bars. When we choose use concentrated, solid products we help reduce the number of lorries on the road and associated carbon emissions.

The bars are also made in a very low energy way: the raw materials are mixed by hand and each bar is pressed individually.

We can use the same idea for everything else we buy. Buying vegetables loose, re-using bags, buying concentrated washing powder, handmade products and trying to reduce the amount of packaged goods we consume can generate immediate benefits for the environment and don't require much effort, governmental lobbying or advanced science.

Edited on August 31st to specify the quantity of shampoo equivalent to the bars (Thanks Sarah). *The usage depends on how well you take care of you shampoo bar! Mine tend to last months.

Movie: Green TV at Lush's Green Fayre on August 2nd, 2007


Sarah said...

"One 55g shampoo bar is equivalent to three bottles of shampoo".

Just how impressive I consider that to be would depend on how big each bottle of shampoo was. ;-)
It's a meaningless statement now - are they 100ml bottles? (in which case a 500ml bottle would give you more uses than a shampoo bar) 500ml bottles? 250ml?

Andrew said...

As I understand it, this statement refers to 250ml bottles (which is the average size for most shampoo bottles sold on the high street) and each shampoo bar being the equivalent of 750ml of liquid shampoo.

Sarah said...

Great, thanks for posting that!

Midnightfire said...

I was intrigued by the same sort of approach with the solid type shower gel. I was intrigued so i went and gor me some Skinny dip. Unfortunatley I found it came in useless, flimsy, plastic tub thing! At least it the bottles can be reused as travel containers or something! Maybe you could introdus=ce a refilling station for the the populer gels etc. Like the one currently used in the Ecover refilling stations, musc better!!!

Viagra Online said...

Just one 55g bar is equivalent to three 250ml bottles of liquid shampoo?? wow that is amazing I want to buy some of those shampoo bars and save a lot of cash since I have a long hair