***COVID-19 Carlson Family Update: We are on day 12 of the 15-day Social Distancing request by the United States Government and day 6 of the Illinois “shelter-in-place” order. We are all healthy [which is quite shocking even under normal circumstances because with a family of six someone is usually sick this time of year]. Brett is home working remotely and getting paid 80% of his salary, which makes us very lucky compared to many, many people in the retail industry. Today is the last day of e-learning for Evangeline before spring break next week. This is probably the only time I will ever say that I wish she wasn’t getting a week off since the school work gives us something to do each morning. Still no end in sight to this virus despite what optimist want to say. Infection rates are still increasing and we are still bracing for the worst while staying safely away from everyone. Also…we are still out of toilet paper.***
COVID-19 has changed the whole world, and my zero waste lifestyle is no exception. We are no longer allowed to bring our own reusable bags or jars to the grocery store. I have received emails stating that only prepackaged bulk goods will be available to purchase for the time being. In some of these minor ways, we have had to adjust just like everyone else. But many of the most important aspects of the zero waste lifestyle have become even more important and more necessary.
Although zero waste is commonly thought of as using a bunch of specialty products and buying a bunch of specialty foods — at the real heart of the zero waste movement is the simple concept of [duh] not wasting anything.
I’ve posted this quote before and I’m sure I’ll do it again. The whole point of zero waste is NOT to have all the aesthetically pleasing bamboo products — it’s about simply not letting anything go to waste.
And at a time like this, when people are surviving on less money and our very government is ordering us to stop going out, and shopping malls and stores are shit down all over the WORLD, now is the perfect time to stop all the wastefulness.
So, anyway, all that to say I hope that we come out on the other side of this global tragedy as a less wasteful society because we have learned how to “use it up, wear it out, make do, or do without.”
In spite of everything, the world continues to turn, so I am continuing to make my usual zero waste swaps. This month I’ve traded traditional toothpaste for toothpaste tablets.
I purchased these a few months ago from Well Earth Goods but was determined to use up my current toothpaste stash before I started with these. However, my partner keeps bringing new toothpaste home from the dentist [I politely refuse their little plastic gift baggy], so I decided to start using the tablets for myself.
Brett saw me try one for the first time, and now he refuses to try it himself. [He said that I made a face which made it look very unappealing.]
What can I say? I was unprepared for how strange it would be to chew up a powdery tablet and then brush it on my teeth. But it didn’t take me long to get used to it.
I like these little tablets a lot now. They provide that minty zing I always want in a toothpaste and my mouth feels clean and refreshed after brushing. AND they are A MILLION TIMES BETTER than the homemade baking soda variety I tried last year. [Yuck!]
In reality, though, the primary reason I like these is that they don’t come in a plastic tube bound for the trash.
Let’s talk about the packaging of these bad boys.
These tablets came in a compostable package and were shipped in a [very nice] cardboard box with paper filler that could be easily recycled.
Still, I’m not a fan of compostable packaging because I’m not entirely certain whether they can be composted in a backyard compost pile, like I have at my home.
[I was disappointed to learn that a lot of packaging that proudly claims to be “compostable” has to be composted by an industrial or commercial composting facility – not just thrown in the backyard bin – which defeats the whole purpose in my opinion.]
I really love the company Well Earth Goods and plan to purchase from them in the future – particularly their laundry strips which I plan to move to exclusively after I’m done with cloth diapers. But I think there may be a better way to purchase the toothpaste tablets, say, in a glass jar that can be recycled or, even better, a container that can be returned to the company for recycling. [I believe this is the case with Lush products, so I will be buying toothpaste tablets there next.]
But over all, I give the toothpaste tablets a huge thumbs up.
I intend to make this permanent switch and now with my bamboo toothbrush, shampoo and conditioner bar, water flosser, and wee wipes [thank you, COVID-19], I have a [nearly] zero waste bathroom!
Next, I will be trying out bar deodorant and posting about that after a few week trial.
Stay tuned – and stay well!!
🦠 🦠 🦠
7 thoughts on “Zero Waste: Toothpaste Tablets”
Usually I am all for not buying new and save, save, saving BUT in today’s economy if you are able you should be trying to help keep the economy alive and that means spending money, buying new things, and then in turn those individuals that are currently without a job “may” have a chance of getting another job once these quarantine orders are finally lifted. I was wondering how you would react to the stores preventing people from bringing in reusable bags and no longer letting customers use reusable containers … but as a germaphobe I actually hope that coffee shops and stores will keep these rules because we just DON’T know where the reusable bags have been nor if the coffee cup that they are getting refilled as actually clean. Do you think that this pandemic will change the way that american’s approach reusable cups and containers??
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Hi Lindsay! First of all, how are you doing with all of this? I hope you and your loved ones are healthy and safe. These are crazy times for sure! Thanks for reminding us all to support small businesses, which is always so important but especially in a time like this! In my family we have committed to supporting local restaurants in our area more frequently than we normally would to try to alleviate the financial pressure they are experiencing. So very sad ☹️ But anyway, to answer your question, there may be a lingering fear of reusable containers after this, just as there will likely be a fear of shaking hands with strangers or gathering in large crowds as a result of this time – but it will always be in the best interest of our businesses and our communities, not to mention of course our planet, to once again encourage the use of reusable bags/containers/cups. And, if I can, I’d like to alleviate your fear of them because when I take reusable containers or bags to a store nothing touches them besides myself and the products that I am taking home in them. People wearing coats and clothes from home, people touching products with their hands, people paying with cash – all of these things are potentially unclean and yet we’re not really worried about them. I think things will return to normal eventually. All fear lessens over time after the threat is gone… I, of course, hope that stores go back to encouraging people to bring their own containers – but I may be wrong. We will have to wait and see. 😊 Thanks for stopping by! Stay safe!
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[Actually I shouldn’t say that we aren’t worried about people touching stuff or paying with cash – because I think we actually ARE worried about that right now – but we will go back to not thinking about these things once this pandemic is over.]
I have yet to try a natural deodorant that is good. I’ve tried a salt stick, no pong deodorant cream that comes in a tin and several of the natural deodorants that you can find at the drug store. None of them work as well as a “real” deodorant. So let me know if you find one that does!
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This is my first try. Fingers crossed! I’ll let you know how it goes!
how did it go?
Wellllll…The bar I bought is not an antiperspirant. It’s compressed deodorizing powder that smells AMAZING, but doesn’t do anything for perspiration. So I’ve been applying it after my shower (after my workout) and I think it makes me smell good. 👍🏻 But I haven’t tried it before a workout to see if it will prevent me from smelling bad…I’m still testing it out.