I never used to like cleaning my shower. It was a pain because I couldn’t simply wipe it down. First, I needed to pull out all the bottles and toiletries. Once I did that, I realized the bottoms of bottles were slimy and covered in mildew. Where to temporarily set these bottles without making more of a mess?
Why did I need all this stuff, anyways?
At the time, I had most things in a typical shower: shampoo, conditioner, body wash, face wash, shaving cream, special shaving cream, razor, maybe a second razor. Regular shampoo and body wash, even the sulfate-free ones, constantly over-dried my skin. Traveling was difficult because everything needed to transfer to 4 oz bottles. And all of this was expensive! $7 a bottle for most of these items that I once thought I needed.
As I ran out of these items, I would experiment with not replacing them. I tested substituting them with various natural products. I was curious to know if using a non-traditional shampoo would ruin my hair or make it less oily. During this transition period, I sometimes caved and purchased an item again. I usually regretted it and then continued my quest to figure out the least amount of items that I needed to properly shower.
The good news is that it’s very little.
After trying many natural shaving creams, different types of liquid soaps, and a range of bar soaps, here are the only 4 items that remain:
- Bar soap
- Apple cider vinegar
- Measuring cup
The bar soap now serves as shampoo, body wash, and shaving cream. One razor is all I need. I water down the apple cider vinegar and pour it over my head with the measuring cup to remove the soap from my hair. That’s it! The end result is a low-cost, low-maintenance, minimalist shower.
UPDATE: I now use filtered apple cider vinegar instead of the concentrated citrus rinse displayed above, because it’s more available at stores and overall less expensive. I add about 1/4 cup ACV to the measuring cup and fill the rest with water. I pour it over my hair and repeat as necessary.
- Finding the right bar soap is the most important. Most that I tried were still too drying. Others came close but were either too expensive or not readily available at many stores.
- When trying to find the right “shampoo,” I found that sugar soaps left a residue and didn’t clean my hair well enough
- I haven’t noticed a difference by not using regular shaving cream
As with any change in habit, it’s easiest to give yourself a boost and transform your shower in one go. I tried phasing out products as I ran out in order to not be wasteful, but now that I know how little I need, I wouldn’t be afraid to make a change.