Turning Your Bathroom Into an Eco-Friendly Spa

August 9, 2012

GBE wishes to welcome guest writer, Heidi Dempsey, who provides readers with a number of common-sense tips for remaking the bathroom in green ways.

7 tips for swathing, bathing, and relaxing with Mother Earth in mind

In our busy, stressed society, taking some time out for yourself to relax and indulge in a spa treatment can be heaven—just what you need to banish stress and return rejuvenated to real life. However, you don’t have to spend a lot on a spa treatment at a five-star beauty salon. You can do your own spa treatments in the comfort of your own bathroom—and you can ensure their earth-friendly as well. Homes that boast water softener systems are already halfway there.

DIY spa treatments are fairly easy to do in a luxurious atmosphere created right in your bathroom. Plus, by incorporating a few green bath and spa products, you can achieve balance, relaxation, and be Eco-fabulous in your own home.

Here are my tips for turning your bathroom into an Eco-friendly spa.

1. Eco-friendly shower curtains

Look in your bathroom! You probably went out and bought that old plastic shower curtain when you moved in. It’s amazing how fast you can create an environment of luxury with a small change—like switching up your shower curtain. However, when you do, steer clear of the shower dressings made of PVC (otherwise known as the chemical compound polyvinyl chloride). This PVC material actually releases chemical gases into the air you breathe in as you soak in the bath or shower. Kinda scary huh? Especially when these same chemicals have been linked to health concerns like heart arrhythmia, as well as liver and kidney issues. To avoid breathing in toxic chemicals every time you bathe, opt for an Eco-friendly shower curtain—made of organic materials like hemp, organic cotton or linen, and bamboo—in a variety of spa-worthy styles and colors.

2. Organic bath mats

I love cork bath mats – not only because of their eco-friendly nature, but equally for their cushiony soft padding and anti-fungal properties. Cork is ideal for moist environments, like bathrooms and spas, because it dries quickly and doesn’t retain dampness.

Organic cotton towels

3. Wrap yourself in nature’s towels

To go greener in your bathroom (and I don’t mean the wall color) swap existing towels with organic towels made of earth-friendly materials like 100% cotton or bamboo—both materials are super soft and lack the pesticides used in the production of non-organic bath towels, face cloths, and hand towels.

4. Swathe in an Eco-robe

There’s nothing like lazing in your bathrobe and slippers with a nice cup of tea after a spa treatment. Take a cue from your bath towels and seek swathing in a robe made from 100 percent cotton or bamboo.

5. Green blow-dryers

The only difference between your regular blow dryer and an eco-friendly blow dryer is that the later contains ceramic heating coils instead of metal coils. Not only is this better for mother earth—it will save you on energy costs because ceramic heats up and dries hair faster than metal.

6. Bath products

If you look on the ingredients list of your typical bath treats—chances are you’ll find an array of long names that you can’t pronounce. That means you are soaking in chemicals and artificial fragrances. Instead shop for Eco-friendly bath products made with ingredients you can pronounce—like essential oils (peppermint, lemon, ginger, rose, and lavender), sea salts, and natural plant butters (like aloe and almond butter).

7. Light the way…naturally

The final touch to your at home spa sanctuary will be the mood lighting. You can create an atmosphere of calm with some lovely scented candles. However, instead of your regular store-bought votives – made with nonrenewable petroleum-based paraffin that emits the nasty stuff, light the way with vegetable-based candles (like beeswax) that tout petroleum-free ingredients.

About The Author: Heidi D Dempsey is an environmental advocate, a dedicated mom of two boys, a loving wife, and a staff writer for ApronAddicts, a website dedicated to the love of cooking and looking good while you do it! You can often find her getting creative in the kitchen as she whips up something yummy in one of her flirty, color-coordinated aprons.

Photos: ApronAddicts,  Uncleweed



Glenn Meyers

Writer, documentary producer, and director. Meyers is a contributor to CleanTechnica, and founder of Green Streets MediaTrain, a communications connection and eLearning hub. As an independent producer, he's been involved in the development, production and distribution of television and distance learning programs for both the education industry and corporate sector. He also is an avid gardener and loves sustainable innovation.