The blog formerly known as   Fake Plastic Fish
October 22, 2010

Perfect Plastic-Free Wooden Hairbrush

I’m in love with Life Without Plastic’s new plastic-free wooden hairbrush. Bald people, please don’t run away. This post has something for you too.

This is not the perfect hairbrush:

plastic hairbrush

My old beat up plastic brush has served me well for many years. I would continue to use it except that the little plastic balls on the ends of the plastic bristles are coming off, and without those balls, the bristles are murder on my hair. (Don’t worry. I have another use for the old plastic one. And it’s cute, as you’ll see at the end of this post.)

plastic hairbrush

So I went looking for another brush that wasn’t made of plastic and didn’t have little plastic balls to come loose in the environment. About a year ago, I bought this one.

It’s not the perfect brush either.

boar bristle hairbrush

I used that boar bristle brush maybe twice. I wish I could have tried it in the store before bringing it home. In addition to the fact that it’s an animal product, and nowadays I’m trying not to support the exploitation of animals, it just doesn’t work for me. It barely gets through my hair, just kind of grazing the surface.

Other wooden brushes I found came packaged in plastic boxes. Sure, I could ask the companies to send me a brush without the plastic, but most likely that plastic box would simply be tossed out on the seller’s end. So I was excited when Jay from Life Without Plastic contacted me to let me know about his new completely plastic-free hairbrush made from wood and natural rubber. He shipped me one to try out. I didn’t have to ask for no plastic packaging because Jay doesn’t use it.

This is the perfect hairbrush:

natural wood hairbrush with wood bristles

The bristles are made from wood, not plastic or animal sources, embedded in a natural rubber base. The brush is manufactured in Germany, so it comes quite a distance to North America, but I’m planning on having mine for a long time.

natural wood hairbrush with wood bristles

The brush works beautifully and actually feels like a cross between a comb and a brush. The wood bristles detangle well and give your scalp a massage at the same time. In fact, Jay told me that he uses it for just that purpose since he doesn’t have much on his head that needs to be brushed.  (Here is Jay’s round head along with mine at the Green Festival last year.)

Jay Sinha

So, what about that plastic brush that I’m not throwing away? I may not like it, but I know a couple of critters who do. (Only with supervision of course. It’s not food, Arya!)

The Giveaway

Jay is giving away one plastic-free wood hairbrush to a lucky Fake Plastic Fish reader. To enter the contest, please leave a comment with your favorite natural, plastic-free personal care product. I’ll choose a winner next week and announce it on this page.

11/03/2010 Update: Virginia is the winner of the plastic-free wooden hairbrush and Tiffany Norton wins the boar bristle brush. Congratulations!

For those who would like to go ahead and order a brush now, Jay says that he is running low on brushes and expects a shipment in November. But please go ahead and order to add your name to the wait list. You’ll be notified as soon as the brushes arrive.

The Discount

In addition to giving away a brush, Life Without Plastic is offering a 10% discount to Fake Plastic Fish readers now through November 15 for every item on the site. Use coupon code: BETHWITHOUTPLASTIC. Life Without Plastic is one of the few companies that meets the standards for advertising on Fake Plastic Fish because every product they carry is carefully considered for its impact on the planet. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to email Jay and ask.

Bonus

Do you want the boar bristle brush?  I really have only used it twice.  Let me know in the comments, and I’ll send it to you (or to the randomly drawn winner if multiple people want it.)  I want it to go to a good home, and I’m betting that there are people whose hair does better with boar bristles than mine did.  Maybe people with straight, sleek hair?

Leave a Reply

110 Comments on "Perfect Plastic-Free Wooden Hairbrush"


Guest
Ms schambach
3 months 28 days ago

Hi where can I get this brush, assuming yours is already taken I am really interested in purchasing one! Love all your posts!

Guest
Gema
8 months 18 days ago

where can I buy it?

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lynn
11 months 1 day ago

I have been using the same wood/boar brush (the square men’s kind, I have short hair) since my high school years, over 35 years ago. Still in perfect shape with a nice patina to the wood. Yes,it has boar bristles but these are a by-product after the pig was killed for meat, no one raises or kills hogs for their bristles, so no need to waste them.

Guest
Diane
11 months 7 days ago

A pity Jay’s one uses beeswax.  I’m looking for a vegan hair brush for thick wavy hair.

Guest
BethTerry
11 months 8 days ago

@cassy Hi Cassy.  I don’t have afro American hair, so I really don’t know.  That’s a good question.  Anyone else know the answer to this?

Guest
BethTerry
11 months 8 days ago

@sirisha No because I would rather not use animal products.

Guest
BethTerry
11 months 8 days ago

Assilem It still works great!

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cassy
11 months 12 days ago

does a wooden brush work for tightly coiled really fine stranded but thick density afro american hair

Guest
sirisha
1 year 8 months ago

did u consider ivory comb?

Guest
Assilem
1 year 10 months ago

How is your brush holding up? I have a wooden brush (different brand) that needs replacing.

Guest
A little help please
2 years 10 months ago

But where can you BUY Jay’s brush? I can’t bloody well find it anywhere!

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BethTerry
2 years 10 months ago

Did you click the link in the very first paragraph?  That is where you can buy it.

Guest
A little help please
2 years 9 months ago

Thank you! I was wondering if there is a stainless steel version of this, one that I can take in the shower with me? Something that  I can easily wash when it gets dirty… @BethTerry

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Thanks for the feedback, Jay. : )

Guest
elve
4 years 8 months ago

I love my wooden combs… by ArtisTree and Sierra Legacy! No thank you to this brush… because the way it’s designed, the ‘bristles’ lift from the base and pull out my hair. Widu Long Bamboo Bristle Brushes work very well!

Guest
Natalia
4 years 8 months ago

I love scrubbing all over with a scrub made from sugar and oil – olive oil, almond oil, whatever is handy. Make a paste, scrub all over, rinse off. Okay, you have to clean the shower out afterwards! but it is worth it – your skin feels super soft and supple. If I have some coffee grounds, I throw them in too.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I want a wooden brush! My favorite natural product has got to be baking soda – it is one ingredient you can use all over your house as well as your hair and body (as a natural deodorant). I’m totally in love with my baking soda + water shampoo and use it every time I shower. #2 would be soapnuts, for another versatile item. I’m all for multifunctional products!

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Dana
4 years 8 months ago

I would love this brush. I feel kind of embarassed because I am just starting out on my quest to replace the mass-produced plastic and junk in my life….everyone else seems to be a bit farther….but my fav non-plastic item?

My home-made shopping bags. I made a ton and I love love love going to the store and being able to refuse to take plastic bags for produce or groceries. We just moved to a new area and I finally live close enough to a farmer’s market that I can skip stuff from t he store altogether.

Thanks for helping me to get motivated and for enlightening me!

Guest
Miranda
4 years 8 months ago

JR Liggets shampoo bar FTW! I also am totally in love with baking soda in a cardboard box for a variety of uses.

Oh, and the Lifefactory water bottles are also excellent.

Guest
Trish
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite plastic free personal care product is baking soda.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Awesome! I so want one of those brushes! I also need a plastic-free razor! Any ideas?
For me, I use shampoos bars and natural soaps from the farmer’s market. I also use Natracare pads. And I don’t wear make-up, so that eliminates a lot of plastic!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Hello Beth and Blessed – and everyone!
Yikes, what a story, Blessed. I could feel the emotion when you said, ‘Oh’. Regarding your questions about cleaning the hairbrush, we have been using a cloth soaked in warm, soapy water, but I asked the makers of the brush directly to get the best answer – they are a wonderful family run company. They recommend using a small soft bristled brush to take off any residues like hair spray or conditioner or ‘nasty soapy gunk’, and then rinse the brush in cold water. The bristles are very strong and should not break when used normally. But hey, we all know life happens, and bristles may break. They can be replaced. We don’t currently carry extra ones, but we will a little further down the road. The natural rubber cushion is glued in so you cannot remove that for cleaning purposes. And they say it is really not worth it to try and replace the cushion if it wears out because it is glued in so well. But if you treat the brush properly, it should last a long time. To maximize the life of the brush it is best not to expose it directly to hot air (i.e., hair dryer) or sunlight. Such extremes of heat will weaken the natural rubber cushion.
Good luck, Blessed. Hope that’s helpful. What great comments. I got lots of ideas from reading about everyone’s faves.
Thanks for doing what you do, Beth.

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Katherine
4 years 8 months ago

My favourite platsitc free personal care products are my diva cups & cloth panty liners. Thanks for the opportunity! I’m entering for the wooden brush – I have long, straight, THICK hair & boar’s bristle doesn’t work at all on mine either.

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Yuki
4 years 8 months ago

My favourite natural, plastic-free personal care product is my Les Fées Mères mentrual pad. It’s 100% organic made with wool and cotton, it’s made in the same province as I live in and I love it!

I don’t want to be a pain but even though its WAY better than disposable, Lunapads contain plastic…

Even though I have straight hair I don’t want the boar bristle brush because it seems like a hassle to clean… I already own a brush that is a hassle to clean, it’s made in wood but it’s got two type of plastic bristles. I would be glad to give it to my mother who got short hair and uses all plastic brushes!

Thanks for the giveaway!

yuki@michelf.com

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Mitty
4 years 8 months ago

I’ve been looking for a non-plastic brush without bristles for a while now. This one looks great! My favorite non-plastic products are my Liggett’s shampoo bar and my baking soda deodorant in a thrift shop glass cheese shaker.

Guest
Kelsie
4 years 8 months ago

Hi Beth!

My favorite non-plastic bathroom products are my jar of coconut oil, my regular washcloth, and my Diva cup. I know it’s silicone, but….definitely changed my life, and all the friends I have encouraged to get one. Thanks for all the tips and encouragement. I’m close to being “no poo” but think my incredibly thick, wavy hair could benefit from this lovely brush to distribute the oils!

K

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Fiona Gregory
4 years 8 months ago

Does he have a non-plastic comb? Now that is hard to find.

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Kacie Scanlon
4 years 8 months ago

It’s a combinations of plastic-free personal care products that I like best because they make me chuckle. I always joke that I shower in salad dressing because other than bar soap which I use for both hair and body (+shaving), I use vinegar to rinse my hair, honey to wash my face, alum salt as deodorant, and coconut oil as lotion and de-frizz cream. I just need to throw some lettuce into the mix somehow and I’ll be set!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Awesome giveaway!!

Fave product is my eco loofa for sure. Took a little while to get used to it though.

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Becky
4 years 8 months ago

Perfect timing! I was just having a battle with my old brush this morning and thinking about how much I hate it! It’s all plastic but it’s been passed down the generations, or at least one generation, from my mom to me. But we have totally different kinds of hair (she has thick and curly, mine is thin and straight), so it’s never really been a good fit. I’ve kept using it because it’s in perfectly good shape, and I hate to be wasteful, but boy is it a drag!

Anyway since I have thin and straight hair, I’d be willing to try either brush. And if I win, I’ll find a nice curly-haired person who needs a brush, and they can have my old one.

My favorite plastic-free items are, as about seventeen other people have said, my lunapads! Periods are a way happier time with fleece than with plastic!

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Sharonus
4 years 8 months ago

I’m so excited to see this post! For about 5 years I’ve been looking for a good, long lasting hair brush, not made in China and without animal hair. Right now, we’re using a collapsable brush I got from Clinque “bonus days” about 10 years ago (when I still used Clinique). I’m sure my 4 year old daughter is going to get to a point soon where that just will not do! :)

My favorite natural, plastic-free personal care product is the sugar scrub I learned to make via the comments in your “Flushing plastic down the drain” post!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I would love to try this plastic-free brush! I have really long (waist-length), thick hair. I’ve wanted a new brush for a while, but I am running into the problems you mention here – the choices are either plastic or animal-based. Now there’s another option, it seems! :) :)

My favorite natural, non-plastic personal care product is either Kirk’s Original Castile Soap or vinegar (in a glass bottle) for shampoo.

Guest
Tina Ambrosetin
4 years 8 months ago

I like the wooden toothbrush

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

By far, my homemade deodorant is my favorite plastic free personal care product. It’s super easy, it totally works, and it’s something I had never considered in my ‘previous life’

Guest
Candace
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite plastic-free personal care product is bar soap from the farmer’s market with virtually no packaging! I use it in a soap sock, and I use very little, so it lasts forever. This brush would be great for my hair. Most brushes tend to make my hair frizzy, and this seems like it would work perfectly without the frizz.

I’m also about to start using baking soda for deoderant (from the bulk bins at the natural foods co-op, to avoid excessive packaging).

Guest
Montessori Mama
4 years 8 months ago

I have learned so much from these comments! Thanks everyone! I love using cloth diapers for my baby and creatively eliminating plastics from my life. In my classroom, we use natural materials (usually from thrift stores) and as little plastic as possible, too! I get most of my recipes from http:/www.care2.com but now I have a new website! I’m also in the market for a new plastic-free brush, so if I don’t win, I know what to get ;) I have to say that my favorite is having “Naked Lady” or clothing exchange parties with friends. We rotate clothes every couple of months and donate the rest to my favorite thrift store!

Guest
Amy A.
4 years 8 months ago

I haven’t moved over to a plastic-free brush yet, so this is a great giveaway for me! My favorite product is baking soda! You can do sooo much with it!

Guest
Stephanie Perry
4 years 8 months ago

i have been using cloth menstrual pads for years, and to top it off i make them myself with fabirci scraps that i acculumate from other projects, i always buy organic cotton/hemp and bamboo as wel for my sewing to reduce the impact on the envrironment through textile processing….before i started using cloth i was getting rashes….that also encouraged me to cloth diaper my children, and i also make my own diapers.

Guest
Virginia
4 years 8 months ago

Oh, this looks like the perfect brush for wavy/curly hair! (I have been similarly burned by the ineffectiveness of the boar’s head brush. Felt like it was just patting me lightly on the head!)

My current favorite non-plastic personal care product is the baking soda rinse I’m using in lieu of shampoo right now. Seems to be helping my ahem, dandruff!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Awesome! I’ve been using a wooden handled brush for a long time, but the bristles are plasic. I’d love to try this one out. I guess I’d have to say Tom’s of Maine toothpaste is my favorite (mostly) plastic-free personal care product. Except I squeeze it onto my plastic toothbrush. :(

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Beth, I think you might be right about the baking soda being better in hard water. I have really long, really thick, really fine hair that is actually very hard to work shampoo through, which was why I did not think the baking soda would work for me–I thought it would be hard to work through and rinse effectively. But I think I shall have to try, as that will be a more frugal long-term solution than those lovely shampoo bars anyway (which I can’t find made locally).

But if you get around to asking the people donating the wooden brush how THEY recommend cleaning them, please be sure to share! : )

Guest
Sarah
4 years 8 months ago

I’d love this brush! Baking soda as deodorant is my favorite personal care product…

Guest
Kathryn
4 years 8 months ago

Also very timely, as I’m also looking for a new hairbrush. Like many others, I have to say just switching to regular, package-free bar soap was very revolutionary for me. At some point several years ago, it occurred to me that as I was using a shower gel, there were all these plastic bottles piling up. Switching to bar soap is simply one of the easiest ways to start consuming less plastic. I’ve really enjoyed Sodasan soaps.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I am also happy to have started using rags for menstrual products – I kept thinking that I needed a specially sewn pad-shaped, buttonable reusable pad, but out of impatience I just ripped up a few old shirts and socks, and they seem to serve well (although when I have time and access to a sewing machine, I’d like to sew a few better and thicker ones for heavier-flow days).

Ditto to Sandi Ratch – my body is a pretty awesome (non)product in itself. Now that I don’t shower every day, my skin is less dry and needs little to no lotion on a day-to-day basis (the good natural soap I use it less harsh than the old standards I used to use). When I washed my hair daily, I needed to use wax or pommade to make it less poofy – and then of course I had to wash it the next day because there was product in it. Now that I wash it less often, the natural oils and such make it so I can break that cycle. I was delighted to find Lush’s packaging free, vegan “squeaky green” bar shampoo (I’d tried baking soda, but it just didn’t seem to work as well).

I also stopped shaving entirely about a year ago – it took quite some time (and a very supportive partner) for me to accept that my body hair is not “gross” and undesirable – it’s a mammalian trait. So I can say that my body is the best plastic-free non-razor and non-shaving soap.

Like a few others here, I do have very short hair and don’t brush it – but I have a lovely eco-conscious sibling with long wavy hair, so I think the brush would be a wonderful and appreciated gift. [On that note, it was my sister that introduced me to Lush products – by getting me a gift with trial sizes of many products (shampoo, face wash, body soap, and moisture bar etc), all of which came in one little cardboard box.]

Guest
Melodie
4 years 8 months ago

I would love to win this brush. As I read your post, I was brushing my hair with my own plastic hairbrush that is missing many of its plastic balls, and looks just as bad as the one in the picture. I’ve been wanting to replace it with a plastic-free and animal-free alternative.

My favourite product is Lunapads. I have used them for over 6 years and I love them.

Guest
Sonja
4 years 8 months ago

I love the cat video! Our cat had its own little brush, and she looooooved to kind of brush her face on it herself when one of us held it still for her. She became high from it, it was so cute to see :-)

The big word on your new brush is German for “wooden peg”, by the way.

My favourite is using olive oil as a moisturizer after the shower. The oil is sold in glass, and it’s simply the best for my skin.

Guest
Sarah S
4 years 8 months ago

I started using baking soda to wash my face at night. Cheap, plastic free, and a great exfoliant.

Guest
Jordan Howard
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite natural care products is BURT’S BEES, from the honey almond lotion to the watermelon body wash.. oh and let me not forget the coconut hand creme and peppermint lip balm. :) Burt’s Bees continues to be the best chemical free personal care products!

This brush is amazing!! Would love to have it.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I use a wooden hairbrush (with wooden bristles and I think a rubber base and wooden handle) and love it. It does feel so good on the scalp. It’s called the Widu, and is made in Italy. The bristles do break occassionally, but at least our brush came with a few replacement bristles.

BUT a horrible thing happened. I was so proud to be going “no poo” and started using natural shampoo bars, and LOVED them. Never even had a greasy transition period while my scalp adjusted. And then, one day, everything went horribly wrong. The shampoo bar failed to lather. I could not get it worked through my hair, and it did not seem to rinse all the way out even with cider vinegar as a rinse, which left my hair feeling gunky and greasy at the same time. I could not figure it out, and kept trying. Finally I gave up and started using a “natural” (but in plastic bottle) shampoo, and it got better.

A month later, I was talking to my husband about my frustrations, and said something like, “I just can’t figure out what happened. It’s not like our water suddenly changed or something!” And at that, my husband got a guilty look on his face and admitted that it had–apparently the whole-house water softener we use had run out of potassium and so he had turned it off while we were visting family for the weekend, and never turned it back on.

Oh. So, I learned the hard way–shampoo bars and hard water don’t mix. Literally.

But here is why I am saying all this!

a) does this count as an entry in the contest, because we have 6 heads in the family and could use another brush!

b) the real tragedy of the story is what happened to our beautiful wooden hairbrush. It got the nastiest soapy gunk coated on all the bristles, which attracted all kinds of dirt and hair and fuzz before I even realized there was a problem and which has necessitated me cleaning them one. bristle. at. a. time. So, let that be a warning to other people who are thinking about experimenting with alternative hair products–wait to get your beautiful new brush until you have worked out the products effectively!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I have a few favorite plastic-free beauty products, but chief among them is Lush’s solid perfume. The Olive Branch smell is just perfectly subtle and lovely. I also LOVE the lotion bars that I’ve gotten from multiple places (Lush is one popular seller, but I’ve found them elsewhere, too). Nothing gives a better massage than a lotion bar.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Coconut oil is my fave because it got rid my son’s nasty diaper rash and is cloth diaper friendly.

I love the store it’s Canadian- rare to find such awesomeness without cross bordershipping for me. I have to order their bread bag. i don’t have such awesome storageness for my bread just sad plastic storage.

Guest
mary
4 years 8 months ago

i would love a new brush and forgot to add coconut oil as hair treatment

Guest
mary
4 years 8 months ago

plastic free care products are baking soda , coconut as cream/ lotion or sugar-oil oil scrub. dont forget essential oils

Guest
mary
4 years 8 months ago

i would love to get the boar brush

Guest
mary
4 years 8 months ago

i would love try the brush, as with long hairs its difficult to deal with

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

That brush sounds awesome! I think my favorite is my cactus cloth.

Guest
Leslie
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite personal car product is the soaps from chagrin valley. They package their soaps in thin brown paper bags so it’s more environmentally friendly!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Boar bristle brushes do nothing for my hair, either. Too curly. I love my rubber keeper cup. I also like my homemade deodorant (baking soda, coconut oil, cornstarch, tea tree oil) as well as using baking soda and cider vinegar on my hair.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

How timely! I am currently shopping for a new hairbrush. I have a ceramic one that is very durable but has plastic bristles. Plus it’s too large for my now quite short hair. This rubber and wood one looks perfect! I’d also be interested in the boar bristle brush. I almost bought a brush at my salon this week (even had the transaction in process) when my brain registered that it was largely plastic! I stopped the transaction and promised myself I’d start looking for a plastic-free brush. So thanks for the info and the possibility of winning one of these two!

As for my favourite plastic-free personal care product… I am working my way towards a plastic free bathroom and am experimenting with a few now (lush shampoo, conditioner and deodorant bars, dry body brush, and considering trying the no poo method). The first one I tried is still my favourite: olive oil for skin conditioner. While I suspect the metal cap is lined with plastic (boo!), the bottle is glass and the product is not only organic but fair trade! Plus a single ingredient and works fabulously. I also make my own butter from local, organic milk I get in reusable containers, and have discovered that it does wonders when rubbed into rough hands.

Thanks for such a great website & information!

Guest
Carla
4 years 8 months ago

My favourite plastic free product is my deodorant: coconut oil, baking soda and organic cornstarch! smells nice too.
I would love to win the brush.

Guest
Darris
4 years 8 months ago

OMG! love the kitty video and the tune is priceless! The Body Shop has glorious wood brushes with wood ‘bristles’. There is no plastic packaging. I have waist length, wavy hair and my Body Shop brush works famously. I had the same results you did with the plastic bristles not to mention a lot of static electricity. I have relegated my old brushes to cat brushes . . . they have a brush upstairs and a brush downstairs. . . they’re well groomed . . .

Guest
Denise Yribarren
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite personal care products without plastic are homemade deodorant in a canning jar, apple cider vinegar rinse, talcum powder (made with cornstarch–it is hot in Arizona!) olive oil as a moisturizer for nighttime, and a mixture of salt and baking soda to brush my teeth. Thank you for all your encouragement and wisdom.

Guest
Alyssa Lee
4 years 8 months ago

Probably my favorite body care item is the lack of shampoo! I have been no poo even before I got really into my personal green movement and I’m lucky enough to have hair that allowed me to switch with almost no hassle. I’ll also say that I love the Lunapad establishment and it’s been such a relief to not have to produce so much waste. It certainly makes me hate my body less once a month. :) I personally haven’t had a problem with my plastic hairbrushes so I’ll be using them for a while, but I’d love a wooden hairbrush to give to my mom, who LOVES head massages. Thank you, Beth and Life Without Plastic!

Guest
Linda B
4 years 8 months ago

I had thought I was doing good with my cloth shopping bags, stainless steel water bottle, & glass lunch ware, but this blog has really opened my eyes to the possibilites. In my area, it’s a challenge to find non-plastic alternatives. One locally available personal care Item I’ve fallen in love with is Burt’s Bees rosemary bar shampoo. And when my final plastic soap scrubby thingy wears out, I will be sewing one from a washcloth.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Put me down for either brush! I’d love to give them a try!

As far as my favorite plastic-free personal care product… it’s my neti pot, which is stainless steel with a bit of rubber at the joint (and it arrived in a simple cardboard box). I used to suffer with awful, ongoing sinus troubles, and at least a couple infections a year. Then I got the neti pot a few years ago, and have had not a single sinus infection since! Plus, now that I’m not even tempted to try sinus/allergy medications (which never worked anyway), I can skip the plastic bottles and packaging that you always get with a trip to the drug store.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

My favourite plastic free thing-y right now is a long handled brush that looks like a very long wood and natural bristle toilet brush, or maybe a gigantic bottle brush. I bought it for $1 at the BART station flea market where I met up with Beth for our plastic free provisioning for Burning Man. It turned out to be awesome for sweeping out the tent and brushing and scrubbing the fine alkaline dust/clay off things at Burning Man. Now it’s a regular part of my irregular household cleaning, replacing the oft broken half plastic duster.

So my non plastic bottle brushes for dishes ARE really cool, but this oddball find is THE COOLEST!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I’d love to try that wooden brush. My favorite plastic free personal care item would be my Lunette Menstrual Cup, hands down.

Also, if nobody else has claimed the boar bristle brush, I’d be happy to take it off your hands. =) Thanks!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I too purchase a boar bristle hair brush to no avail. So that makes another one if someone wants to give it a home.

My favorite plastic free personal care product
–Naturally Wild Deodorant Cream by Tamara’s Herbes.
Deodorant Cream comes in a stainless steel tin and you just apply a small bit with your fingers–no plastic tubes to discard. http://www.tamarasherbes.com

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I love to use coconut oil for my facial moisterizer, and also to keep the frizz away in my hair.

Guest
Katie
4 years 8 months ago

I’d love to try that brush! My favorite plastic-free products are my homemade deodorant and the shampoo and lotion bars that my friend makes – http://www.duncanbrookfarm.com/handmadesoapcrafts.html

Guest
Beth W
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite natural plastic-free personal-care product is baking soda in the paper box. In the shower, a bit directly on my hand with water cleans my whole body including my hair. I’ve been using it exclusively for about 6 months (twice a month I use a henna conditioner rinse, but that’s it). I haven’t told anyone I changed over, but I’m increasingly getting compliments on my hair!

I do brush my hair daily, however.

Guest
Veronica
4 years 8 months ago

I have to say, I love my boars hair bristle brush. I keep my hair short and it’s fine and wavy, so I don’t have issues getting my brush through it. I would have more issues with that niffty little wooden brush XD. So, very much not entering the contest for something I don’t need. I will agree about a bunch of those non-plastic favorites up there: Soap from the farmer’s market, baking soda (these both last me a while, though I have to say I do go through a lot of baking soda when cleaning…) my cloth menstrual pads and handkerchiefs… I really can’t just pick one…

Wait, yes I can. My Aprons. They keep the few clothes I chose to keep clean–the work aprons absorb mocha and chai, and the home aprons get all of the flour and dish-hand-drying action. I can see why women really loved having them! I just need to make a few more for home… :)

Guest
Christina
4 years 8 months ago

My favourite product ist coconut butter as a kind of deodorant. Just apply a tiny little bit under your armpits after you took a shower. My other favourite product is rhassoul (mineral clay). As the baking powder “no ‘poo” method didn’t work out for me very well, I had to find an alternative and that one rocks my bathroom for 4 years now. Never washed my hair with anything else ever since and it looks better than ever. Maybe you even want to write about this as a plastic free alternative to baking powder as a shampoo or have a guest post about it? Rhassoul is also great to wash your body or for facial masks. It’s a wonderful, versatile, plastic free product that might be worth discussing.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Many ladies mention the cloth pads as their fav, but since I dont need those when preggo Im going to have to break the rules a little and say my fav is for my little ones, cloth diapers :) some have plastic in the waterproof covers but there are alternatives such as wool (not great for vegans I suppose but its our best bet for now and I only use reputable sources).

As for the boars hair brush…its not really meant to go through your hair lol I have one from Germany that my dad bought there about two decades ago, I use it to smooth the flyaways…and its great on my non tangly sons hair LOL I used to try and use it as a regular brush as a kid but my mom got so angry about the rats nest I wasnt combing out haha so I can vouch for it not being quite a real brush! More of a finishing tool lol anyways, that wooden/natural rubber one looks fabulous. I can only imagine how good it feels on your scalp! Id love one!

Guest
Pamela Melcher
4 years 8 months ago

Hi,

Thank you for the idea of this little ‘contest,’ and thank you, everybody, for your comments.
A great way to learn about cool green stuff :)

I had also struggled with the hairbrush challenge. I, too, have a wooden brush with bristles which do not go through my sleek, rather thin hair. So I have been using what I call my UFO brush – metallic gray plastic with thick dealies like the ones on the wooden brush. At least there are no little plastic balls to come off. Every time I used it I cringed. I felt guilty because the flexible dealies are very mild on my scalp and hair and also successfully brush it. I did not like to admit that there was something about this ugly plastic hairbrush that I like.

I am so excited to learn about this hairbrush.

I am also happy to learn that there are others who are being so careful in reducing or eliminating the plastic in their lives.

My favorite natural personal care item is also the loofa. I love it that they are not produced with industrial processes.

I once tried to grow them, but I live in Portland, Oregon, and the vine never even flowered. I was very disappointed.

Guest
Cath
4 years 8 months ago

I like the goat’s milk shampoo bar I started using last month, bought from a lady who farms her own goats. My hair is squeaky clean and my scalp isn’t irritated. The lather is of epic proportions, too – quite fun for the kids!

Guest
Half Bear
4 years 8 months ago

After the BBB that did not seem to work for me, either, I got a brush just like this. Have had it for years now, it’s great!
My favourite product is a DivaCup – have had mine since 2006.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I don’t need the brush – I’ve had my shaped wooden bristle brush for 36 years and I don’t think I’ll ever have to replace it. The shape and strength of the brush are very important which is probably why that brush didn’t work for you.

My other favourite green thing is no poo. I use a little bicarb in hot water and sometimes a little vinegar.

viv in nz

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Beth, I’m in love with my Bass 100% bamboo hair brush with wood bristles. Very cute video. Our black cats looks so similar. My cats happen to love plastic bristles too!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I’d say the best plastic-free personal care product I use is Lush’s shampoo bar – no packaging, and it works wonders on my hair! I’ll never go back to liquid shampoo in a bottle. :)

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I use a wooden comb for my curly hair. I also use a plastic brush, It works ok but I would really like to try this wooden brush.

Guest
sui
4 years 8 months ago

I love the Keeper for my period, and Lush shampoo bars. :D Yay!

Guest
Dawn
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite personal care product is actually for my DD (2mo). She uses cloth diapers from the diaper service I work for! As an added bonus (besides those of frugality and eco-saving and baby bum saving) by using hte cloth diapers it keeps me from using other plastic based items: namely Desitin. It is a petrolium base product that completely ruins the absorbency and white-ness (it’s a service-they care about stains) of the diaper! :)

For me? I love a product that is almost plastic free-Tom’s toothpaste in the Sensitive variety. I have very senesitive teeth and had to resort to Sensodyne. However I found out about my sensitivity to SLS, SLFS, and Baking Soda. As such I couldn’t use regular toothpaste but the baking soda alternative wasn’t accessable to me. Then I found Tom’s! As you have mentioned the only thing not recyclable and made of plastic is the inner spiral part of the tube(the tip of the tube minus the cap). Eco mamma bonus! :)

That said, I have been desperate to find a great wooden alternative to my hairbrush that no longer has any of the balls on it because they all got stuck in my hair at one point or another. But with very thick very curly hair it is hard to find something. Thanks for the tip and thanks to the makers for making it!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I have straight, sleek hair and use a boar bristle brush. So while I don’t need yours, i can verify that it works for me.

As for my favourite plastic-free personal care product, I’m going to say my honey-as-facewash. I can buy local honey in glass jars at the farmer’s market, so it’s plastic-free and local. And totally non-toxic.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

The wooden brush looks lovely. I have two similar styles of brushes by Bass, one for me and one for my daughter. I’ve got very thick coarse wavy hair (Jewish hair!) which breaks plastic brushes in a matter of months. Those little balls at the end? come right off. But my Bass brush goes through my hair very nicely and hasn’t broken at all despite 2.5 years of daily use. The only negative is the varnish has peeled a bit from moisture on the bathroom counter where I store it. But their newer brushes (like my daughter’s) are bamboo and have no varnish, so no problem there.

Guest
Sandra
4 years 8 months ago

I love my lunapads! These have to be my fave personal care product. AND they made locally.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I’m almost afraid to say how badly I want the boar’s bristle brush, for fear that others will want it too! I have one that my kids have been using too, and frankly, I’d love to have a new one that is just mine. I have fine, sleek hair, like you said, so maybe that’s why it works for me, but I have found that from crown to waist, my hair is healthier when I use the BBB to redistribute the oils and remove dirt. What many people don’t realize about the BBB is that it was never used as a detangling brush, like we have become accustomed to using them. The BBB is a cleaning tool, used to clean away dirt and dust, while redistributing scalp oils along the length of the shaft, reducing the need for frequent shampooing. The “100 strokes each night” rule of thumb my Oma taught me has proven to be a great personal care tip!

As for a favorite personal care product – wow, that is hard! Apple cider vinegar? Avocado? Olive oil? Oatmeal? Washable unpaper products? I just can’t choose…

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Ooo, that looks like a great brush! I’ve been using my plastic hairbrush for many years, and I absolutely love it but it’s falling apart. (And I knew you were going to repurpose your pld brush as a cat brush before I saw the video of Arya with it. :)

My favorite plastic-free personal care product is my Diva Cup. It’s silicone, not plastic!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

I have to say I love fiveseeds lipbalms!

Guest
Kayla
4 years 8 months ago

After six months of living life with little plastic I have a bunch of new favs. The diva cup is great and sure does reduce the amount of plastic but it’s NOT plastic free :( also I was using before I took the plastic free pledge. Shampoo bars are great and considering I do the no-poo method as described (oh yes, I’ve read ever last post on this blog) 6 days a week I could definitely use either of the brushes. My fav beauty product is baking soda for deodorant, I use organic lavender essential oil for sent and an old wooden makeup brush to dab it on after a shower and there’s no odor and no plastic! It’s a win win!

Guest
Kailey Trevithick
4 years 8 months ago

Hmm… Well
I used to carry around packages of kleenex in those little plastic packages.
But just recently I switched to the old-fashioned hanky made from a cut up sheet.
I even hemmed and decorated them with little (bad) embroidery designs to make them nice to look at when I blow my nose full of not so pretty stuff into them.
It saves me money in the long-run because I don’t have to keep buying new kleenex packets, instead I throw my hankies in with the laundry.
Not a big thing, but you have to start somewhere :)

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite natural personal care product is my luffa. Came without packaging, so no plastic and it is not animal based… luffa is actually in the gourd family. That, and a wash rag.

Guest
Angie Tschopp
4 years 8 months ago

I have switched to shampoo bars insted of shampoo in plastic bottles. I love the Lush store in my local mall. I have found the bar last about a month. It is well worth the cost.

Guest
Jenevra
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite natural, plastic-free personal care product is my deodorant stone. It came in a small cardboard box that I keep popping it back into every morning after I use it. I think I grossed out my mom when she found out that I don’t use “real” deodorant anymore.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Great post Beth. I won’t enter the competition as I’m so far away, (Australia) but I do have a fantastic dry skin brush I love using that is all natural. Loved the kitty-video – you have black and white versions of my cats! Also off to check out Jay’s site.

Guest
The Gringa
4 years 8 months ago

I’m not entering the contest because I have plenty of hairbrushes, but I want to chime in to say that cloth pads are also my favorite plastic-free personal care item. There’s no more “I need to run to the store because I’m all out” stuff happening.

I may take advantage of that Life Without Plastic discount :-)

Guest
surviving and thriving on pennies
4 years 8 months ago

My favorite plastic free thing right now is my Physican’s Formula wooden face powder. Its compact and light weight. I just bought a brush from the dollar store of all places. Its wooden with wooden bristles but there is plastic on it. The part that holds onto the bristles is plastic. But its the most wooden plastic free brush I can find right now. Uggg

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

The brush sounds very interesting. I am curious to know how wooden bristles feel. I am currently using a plastic bristle brush and those little balls keep coming off every time I brush. I have long hair and need a good brush. My fav personal care products are my bamboo makeup brushes by ecotools.

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

The brush sounds very interestingl. I am curious to know how wooden bristles feel. I am currently using a plastic bristle brush and those little balls keep coming off every time I brush. I have long hair and need a good brush. My fav personal care products are my bamboo makeup brushes by ecotools.

Guest
Twyla
4 years 8 months ago

After a month or so of using it, will you give us another review?
My favorite natural, non plastic personal is soap. yup. Soap. I love going to the little booth during xmas at the mall that makes it. I get scentless olive and shea.

Guest
Polina
4 years 8 months ago

My favourite plastic-free product that I use is bar shampoo and bar hair conditioner from Lush. When I first stepped in I was worried that I would have to ask them not to wrap it in plastic, since a lot of “natural” soaps have plastic wrappers despite being all-natural themselves. But I never even had to ask! They wrapped my shampoo bars and my hair conditioner bar in waxed paper. It lasts way longer than liquid shampoos and conditioners do and treats my hair just as nicely.

I have a fairly decent plastic hair brush that I’ve had for years and that hasn’t broken or anything, so I don’t need a wooden hair brush nearly as much as other people might. Still, I felt it was worth a try. I’m definitely gonna check out the Life Without Plastic website right now!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

OMG – I’m so excited about this! I have the exact same story with brushes. I have one gross plastic one that I bought years ago and I hate it. And I have the boar bristle, wooden brush similar to yours that I bought when I was trying to move away from plastic – and it doesn’t even remotely get into my super thick, long hair. No way!

I had honestly given up on brushes and just have been using the plastic wide-toothed comb that I bought when I was 14. (I can’t believe I still have it 20 years later!)

My favorite personal care products sans plastic…this is a tough one, as I make everything myself (lotion, shampoo, deodorant). But like Susanna, I use LunaPads and love them.

Guest
MJ Mayer
4 years 8 months ago

I also use cloth pads and a Moon Cup for that time of the month! So I guess that’s my favorite! My husband is in love with his soap cozy I made him. It’s basically a little pillowcase looking bag to put a bar of soap in and then it lathers up really nice like those (plastic) poofy things you put shower gel (from a plastic bottle) on! And we get our soap from the farmer’s market so no plastic wrapping!

Guest
4 years 8 months ago

They best natural product I use is my own body – funny, but it seems to take care of itself. I use virtually nothing on my skin. Occasionally I do use soap, but most of the time it’s just water and my own natural oils. I also do not use makeup. I find that I have allergic reactions, and whenever I have worn makeup, I just feel like I’m wearing a mask. I use a salt crystal as deodorant most of the time (unless I’m in a high-stress environment with other people and then I do use a commercial deodorant to avoid embarassment) and I use cloth menstrual pads. Marketers sure have messed with our minds!

Guest
Luna
4 years 8 months ago

I’ve been using the same plastic hairbrush for a while. I keep getting the little plastic balls STUCK IN MY HAIR! I would love a brush with which I wouldn’t have that problem. (I do also have very straight, sleek hair with just the soooooftest wave to it.)

Guest
susanna eve
4 years 8 months ago

I am using a recyled wood toothbrush right now. i don’t know if the bristles part is plastic free but the handle part sure is:) I have really short hair so I don’t use a hairbrush but my daughter does and I would love to win this for her:)
My favorite personal care items are cloth menstrual pads, I have been using cloth pads for 21 years and my daughter has only ever used cloth pads (she is only 13).