Since our last zero waste swaps post, we’ve made more progress on our zero waste journey. To be completely honest, as someone who works within 5 miles radius from home, I am much less relied on disposable plastics via takeaways and packaged food. Despite trying NOT to sound like a kvetch, I can’t help but be on Ben’s case. Who works in the city (and pay rent), bringing home plastic bags and packaging of all shape and sizes. He would kneel while begging for forgiveness (kidding) and spill out the inner city truth - things come pre-packaged.
All that intro is to say, for a while we rely on plastic recycling. Then, one day… To Ben’s dismay, he found our local recycling system in chaos. He came home defeated, and admit that we have to find ways to cut down plastic.
If the switch from bottled shampoo and shower gel to bar soaps is considered as a baby step, consider DIY earthy toothpaste as a GIANT step.
After reading a bunch of DIY toothpaste recipes, I’ve picked one that fits the following criteria:
- 5 steps or less.
- Non-abrasive (hence, less baking soda).
- Squeezable (not powder)
- Affordable, as well as accessible.
I believe in user intuition, that’s why I opt for a ‘paste’ option instead of powder. To take this intuitive approach even further, I piped the paste into a squeezable tube from Muji. Trust me, it makes all the difference. Although it is still plastic, at least it can be reused and rid of the monthly disposal of non-recyclable tubes.
To begin with, I set my expectation pretty low, hence the small portion as a trial. Since writing this post, I have used it three times and nothing feels out of place in the oral hygiene department. I chose peppermint and tea tree as the main scent and taste, it leaves my mouth feeling fresh and clean. The teeny bit of baking soda I added to the recipe, seems to have removed some coffee stains on my teeth, but hard to say whether I am imagining it.
Don’t expect it to foam. That and it feels a little more bitsy than typical toothpaste. Apart from that, it does what all toothpaste do and I am happy to keep using and making it.
If DIY is not your thing, which I totally get it, here are some other low waste options in online stores that ship to Hong Kong.
David’s | Premium Natural Toothpaste
Available at Plastic-Free HK
As part of an upcoming launch, The Conscious Collective by A.C.F. clothing has a workshop on DIY toothpaste & deodorant. Perfect for those who would prefer a little more guidance than my nonchalant approach.
So far we have made most of our zero-waste effort in our bathroom, and I must emphasised on the ‘we’. I would like to take this opportunity to thank my partner for his acceptance and openness to change. Ben, you deserved all the toothpaste kisses I have to give.