#vanlife – Less Waste in the Camper Bathroom

Here we are with post number two in my new #vanlife series! Today’s is all about my plastic free camper bathroom. I can’t say that it’s zero waste but it definetly is less waste and almost completely plastic free. In any case, I would argue that it is overall pretty sustainable and no matter if for your camper or for your home; I hope my tips here are helping you towards a more sustainable and less waste bathroom!

Are you still using products in a plastic packaging? I do have a few myself, however, I try to get all my new products without plastic packaging – and it is actually quite easy! For our bathroom in the camper I have almost everything that I need in glass jars or without any packaging at all; and in today’s post I am sharing which products I use and what I can recommend for your to save on plastic packaging in the bathroom!

Here we go with my NINE tips for a plastic free camper bathroom:

1. The obvious first: Use hard soaps!

This is an easy one and yet such an effective change you can make: exchange your liquid soaps in plastic packaging to hard soaps that come packed in a piece of paper (or nothing).

I have two soaps in my camper bathroom: one for the body and the hands and one for my face. The soap for the face is even more sensitive and nourshing compared to the one for hands and body. But both are wonderfully rehydrating.

For my face I use a LIMA soap with olive oil, coconut oil, and cocoa butter. It is perfect for my sensitive skin! I use it as a make up remover as well, like that I am doing fine with only one product for the entire face. For one year of travels I brought two face soaps! That’s all I need to clean my face during an entire year!

For my body I actually brought the LIMA family gift box with me on our journey. In the family box there are six soaps and those will last us an entire year (we are a family of four, my baby however is not using any soap yet). In the family box we have the chocola peeling soap with coffee for normal skin, the aspira salt-soap for normal skin and impuritie, and the mermaid soap for normal and dry skin. My four year old loves the mermaid soap best and I love the peeling soap. With the family box we each get what we like best.

By the way, I keep all soaps in soap boxes from LIMA – they are made of liquid wood which is 100% biodegradable!  

2. Use cream deodorants

Using hard soap is an change that really EVERYONE can make easily. Now in case you are ready for the next step get a cream deodorant! There isn’t any need for plastic packed (or aluminium packed) deodorants any longer! There are so many plastic free options out there! My absolutely favorite deodorant since more than a year now comes from I+M Berlin. It is packed in a glass jar which I like to reuse.

As I do not want any non-organic deodorant in my bathroom throughout our year of travels, I brought enough plastic free deodorant for one year with me in the camper – all from I+M Berlin. As my husband and I are using the same deodorant, we got unisex scents; or rather one unisex scent and one deodorant that comes without any scent at all! 

In the past few years I tried A LOT of natural deodorants and another LOT of plastic free deodorants. I+M won all of my challenges and I can absolutely recommend this deodorant when you want to change towards a more sustainable, natural and less waste lifestyle!

3. Find your favorite alternative to conventional toothpaste!

Toothpaste in plastic tubes is what we are all used too and I know from maaaany people that changing their tooth paste routine is very difficult for them. However, I promise that there is an alternative out there that you like! Don’t give up before you even tried, please!

Some people like dental tabs (I do not!), some people make their own tooth paste (I do not!), some people like dental powder (I do!), and some people like dental cleansing oil (I do!).

For our year in the camper I brought dental cleansing oil from Provida because we only need two small bottles for an entire year for all of us. That’s not much space, neither much weight, and, hence, perfect for trips like the one we are currently doing!

4. Find your favorite non-plastic tooth brush

Another sensitive topic, I know. When I say: go for hard soap everyone is like “sure, I can do that!” but when I say “put a bamboo stick into your mouth instead of a plastic toothbrush” everyone is like “noooo way!”. And you know what? I am the same! I just don’t like those bamboo toothbrushes! I reeeeaallly tried to get used to them but no chance, I can’t!

You know what the good thing is? There ARE other options that are much more sustainable than the regular plastic tooth brush. As for me, I am using TIO brushes. The head is made of cellulose acetate aka wood from FSC certified plants and the handle from durable bio polyethylene made from sugarcane. You can say it’s not perfect and maybe it’s not, but it IS so much better than the conventional tooth brush as it is biodegradable to a large extent!

5. Use face oil instead of cream

I’ve been posting a lot about the advantages of face oils on the blog already but I’m not getting tired to repeating: face oils are wonderful! They don’t make a lot of waste, they are very long lasting as you only need a little, they are very versatile, they can be upgraded easily by adding essential oils, and they come in various different kinds so that you can find the perfect one for your skin type!

For our one year journey I brought some almond oil from Provida. Almond oil is my favorite face oil for during the day, however, I also use it to massage my baby, as a “hand cream”, sometimes for my feet etc. etc. It’s so versatile! I usually like to add a few drops of lavender essential oil, and some vanilla, and rose essential oil to upgrade the almond oil a little.

I also brought a bottle of passionfruit seed oil because I got this one as a sample from Primavera just before I left home. And I was curios, of course. I am now using it as a face oil for the night and I love it!

6. Use a body butter bar

A what? Yes! A body butter bar! When I planned for one year of travelling I racked my brain over how to bring enough natural and organic body lotion for an entire yer – and then I discovered the body butter bar from LIMA and I asked how much I would need for a year … guess what!? I need TWO bars! That is basically no space and no weight at all in the camper!

The body butter bars are melting on the skin, when they touch it and the one from LIMA comes with a wonderful cocoa-butter-scent!

Body butter bars come wrapped in paper or without any packaging – basically no waste at all!

7. Shave plastic free!

I LOVE my stainless steel razor and I would NEVER go back to any of those plastic razors! I case you like yourself and this precious planet earth: just give up on those plastic razors! They aren’t worth it, really they aren’t!

A stainless steel razor is a little bit of an investment, I know, but it is SO worth it. And it can easily last you a lifetime so you may end up saving money in the end.

My razor is from Leaf Shave but there are other options out there as well. Just check what attracts you most – it is you who must feel comfortable with at the end of the day.

8. Avoid towels made of plastic/polyester!

Any polyester in fabrics ends up as microplastic in our groundwaters when washed in the washing machine! So make sure to avoid polyester wherever possible! I know many people like those travel towels for their camper bathroom, but unfortunatly those are always made of plastic.

Four our camper we brought towels from Kushel. I like those because they are made from reforested beech wood fibers and organic cotton. This material mix has a significantly lower impact on the environment and provides at the same time an increased absorbency and a long-lasting soft touch. They are lightweight and they definetly dry fast enough (we hang them in our camper garage after using). Plus the fact that Kushel plants two trees for every towel bought! No need for polyester travel towels for us!

9. Don’t be too hard with yourself! 

YOU are amazing! Because you’ve read aaaall the way through this post! This means you really ARE into changing your bathroom routines and you want to live a more sustainable and less waste life. This is amazing and you can just be SO proud of yourself!

Now, please do not feel overwhelmed – you don’t have to change everything at once. Do it step by step; as I said before it is easy to exchange the liquid soap to hard soap, and maybe the cream deodorant is easy for you as well, but you are just not ready for the dental cleansing oil yet!? That’s fine! Try it in a few weeks, don’t rush yourself if you don’t feel like rushing. Just make sure to be consistent. Change something today – and then change something next week, and the week after, and so on. Also, always use up what you have; it doesn’t make sense to throw out your liquid soap just because you now want a hard one.

And that’s it! These have been my NINE tips for a less waste camper bathroom. How did you like this post? Did you learn anything new? Is there anything you feel like implementing into your life? I would love to know! Feel free to leave a comment or connect on instagram!


This blog post contains names of/pictures of/weblinks to brands and hence, is perceived advertisement. I was not paid for the post and all opinion is my own.


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