Living

Three Easy Ways to Not Let Toiletries and Cosmetics Go to Waste

Remember that amazing hair product that your stylist used in the salon, you bought it, but then you realized it was too hard to use yourself? Or that expensive cleanser you used once but irritated your skin and it is just sitting in your bathroom cabinet? Or that purse you forgot that you had because it was inside a shoe box in your closet for the last two years? 

Well, it is hard to part ways with expensive items but you don’t really need to keep things you don’t use in your home. And, if you think about it, by not using what you have you are also wasting resources. Here are three ideas on how to say good-bye to used items so that other people will actually make use of them: 

1. Offer them to family and friends — There is nothing wrong asking the closest people in your life if they are interested in a well-functioning, nice item that you are not using. They will honestly say “no, thanks” if they have no intent to use it. I recently gave my mom a nice purse that I haven’t used in years. She loved it and told me she receives compliments often!

2. Post to Buy Nothing Facebook groups — I cleaned my bathroom cabinet recently and was shocked by how much unused stuff that I had. People happily picked up these items from my porch after I posted them on a Facebook group. Buy Nothing groups are a super efficient and convenient way to pass along items. You’d be surprised — folks even wanted a Mango and Orange lotion I had never opened and some teeny-tiny samples of cosmetics!  

Mango and Orange Lotion found a new home thanks to our local Buy Nothing group – I could not recall when I bought it or if it was a gift?

3. Donate to non-governmental organizations or shelters — Look for homeless shelters in your area. Many will happily accept toiletries to create hygiene kits (literally just google “toiletries donations near me”). Often these orgs will accept travel size toiletries, which frequently just pile up in a hidden place in your home after a year or so. There is also a program serving women and families overcoming poverty and abuse in Washington called “Beauty Share” that will accept gently used cosmetic items, as well as new ones. 

Ready for 2020 cleansing? My goal for this year is not to buy one single cosmetic product and just be better about using what I already have. I feel tempted sometimes to buy and try the newest eco-friendly product, but I do want to make sure I don’t waste by buying more.

“La Vall | Workshop 7h” by Pablo Berges Alonso, Endika Gómez de Balugera, Sofía Cuba, ElisavaPack is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 

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