Eight of the best solid shampoo bars
Although it's more environmentally friendly to travel by train or bus, sometimes a flight is unavoidable. But one easy step you can take to reduce your environmental impact when flying is to travel light.
Every pound of weight carried by a plane increases the quantity of fuel it uses. The lighter the plane, the less fuel it burns – reducing pollution. Travelling with just hand luggage reduces the weight on the aircraft. You'll benefit by only taking what you really need, with luggage that's easier to carry – and less time waiting around at the airport to collect suitcases from the hold.
Carrying liquids in hand luggage, however, can cause problems – you're only allowed a maximum of 100ml in each bottle, which is often not enough for a longer trip.
That's why we love solid shampoo bars – they're brilliant for travelling as they take up less space and weight than conventional shampoo bottles, with no risk of spillages. And they are long-lasting, so should keep your hair clean throughout your trip!
Switching from bottled shampoo to bars of shampoo is also a quick and easy way to reduce your use of plastics and help beat plastic pollution.
Here are seven of our favourites:
DR Harris shampoo bars £8.95
These wonderful-smelling solid shampoo bars from D R Harris are a delight to use. At just 66g, including recyclable storage tin that prevents leaks in your luggage, each bar lasts as long as a 300ml bottle of liquid shampoo – but is far lighter and takes up less space. Available in four different fragrances, we loved Arlington – the signature fragrance from D R Harris. It leaves hair soft and squeaky clean – and can also be used on the body.
You get a rich, creamy lather using very little water with this bar, so it's great for camping or other situations when water supply is limited. The healing hemp helps soothe skin and is kind to damaged hair, and the bar smells quite neutral – so it's ideal if you don't like strong fragrances or have sensitive skin. Simply Soaps has excellent eco credentials – it's a carbon-neutral company, using green electricity and testing products only on humans. The simple packaging is biodegradable with a card insert and compostable wrapper.
The luxurious blend of lemongrass, lavender, tea tree and peppermint oils create a refreshing fragrance that provides an invigorating start to your day. As well as leaving hair soft and shiny, it works as a body soap, and creates a lather that's suitable for shaving – so it's perfect for travel. It's naturally moisturising, and doesn't dry out skin or hair. Free from SLS, parabens and palm oil – and also vegan cruelty-free.
JR Liggett's shampoo bars are a sound ecological choice as they're made with totally natural oils – including olive oil and coconut oil – with no added chemicals such as artificial colourants and fragrances. And the recyclable cardboard won't add to landfill like a standard plastic shampoo bottle. The bars last for ages – the 3.5oz bar will easily see you through a fortnight's holiday – and they leave hair clean and tangle-free. As an added bonus they can be used on body and face too. Comes in several different formulas, including soothing herbal and refreshing Jojoba & Peppermint.
Handmade in Well-next-the-Sea, on the beautiful north Norfolk coast, this shampoo soap has a fragrance that's evocative of exotic, tropical locations. Made with the finest-quality natural ingredients – including coconut milk, cocoa butter, shea butter, and nourishing oils – it will leave your hair clean and soft. The simple, paper packaging is perfect if you're trying to reduce your plastic use. Natural Soap Co also make a Neem Shampoo Soap, that naturally deters head lice – whilst still smelling gorgeous, thanks to the cinnamon leaf and tea tree essential oils.
Lush New Shampoo Bar £6.50
If you're concerned that natural shampoo bars won't lather up as well as your favourite liquid, then this ethical bar from Lush is the one for you. It only needs a quick wipe over the head to produce a lovely rich and invigorating lather that's subtly scented with cinnamon, cloves and peppermint. Stamped with the #BeCrueltyFree hashtag to remind you that Lush products are not tested on animals, and ingredients used are only purchased from suppliers who don't test on animals.
This new, naturally antibacterial soap from Our Tiny Bees is a great choice if you're travelling as it can also be used on the body, and for shaving. The large block is long-lasting, and the wonderful, invigorating fragrance – thanks to natural essential oils of juniper, cedarwood, ylang ylang and lemon – guarantees a refreshing start to your day! Lathers up very nicely and rinses cleanly away to leave hair shiny and full of body. There are seven other fragrances to choose from too, including soothing lavender and a fragrance-free bar that's ideal for young children or people with sensitive skin. Spend more than £20 online at www.ourtinybees.co.uk (not hard, the website is packed with fabulous eco-friendly products!) and you get a free lip balm!
This is the bar to choose if you have sensitive skin or an itchy, flaky scalp. Oatmilk contains vitamin B – an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory that can help soothe an irritated scalp. Meanwhile argan oil promotes hair growth, thickening hair and helping to reduce hair loss. Funky Soap Shop also make a fragrance-free solid conditioner especially formulated for sensitive scalps – this is great value, as it lasts absolutely ages.