Honey, I Shrunk Your Morning Routine
Right down to tiny tablets—you’re welcome.
Updated Sep 29, 2021 7:06 AM
The last form you’d probably expect your toothpaste or mouthwash to come in is a tidy tablet. But this unusual format might just be the answer to excessive plastic waste. It’s estimated that between 8 and 10 billion tons of plastic trash are on the planet right now, and the number is constantly rising every day. That iced-coffee cup you drank out of last week? Still on the planet. That toothbrush you used when you were 4 years old? Yep, still sitting in a landfill. Which is where tablets step in.
If you were to switch your daily personal-care products to an eco-friendly option, you could save about five pounds of single-use plastic waste in just the next year alone. That’s significant and it adds up, because, according to the EPA, a third of all waste in landfills is created by personal-care products—that’s about 28,000 tons of plastic, every single day.
From dental care to cleaning (and beyond), up-and-coming brands are hoping to reduce waste with products that simply disappear à la tablets. Advancements in technology are allowing these innovative companies to formulate your everyday basics into one itty-bitty, effective tablet, all in the name of reducing single-use plastic consumption (not to mention making it incredibly travel friendly, too). Here are four options that will miniaturize your daily routine—and carbon footprint.
For Freshened Breath
You’re about to hear a whole lot about By Humankind, if you haven’t already. The new brand is on a mission to fight single-use plastics, all while making your morning routine look a lot cooler, thanks to its sleek, high-design packaging. Thus far the company has launched deodorant, shampoo, and mouthwash—the deodorant comes in a forever packaging, which you refill; the shampoo is a bar; but the mouthwash is a revelation—it’s a tablet.
These single-portion tablets are alcohol-free, effervescent, and dissolve in water. Available in both mint and spearmint, the freshness-inducing mouthwash eliminates the need for traditional plastic containers. It comes in a forever container, and then refills are sent in compostable packaging. The clean-ingredients product helps eliminate plastic usage by 90 percent or more, making it better for you and the planet.
For Your Pearly Whites
You go through a lot of waste just in the name of keeping your teeth clean. It’s estimated that more than 1 billion plastic toothpaste tubes are thrown out each year, some with harsh chemical residues that are harmful to animals and are not biodegradable. That’s more than 50 Empire State Buildings’ worth of toothpaste tubes that will end up in landfills or oceans.
New brand Bite is hoping to take a, uh, bite out of those aggressive numbers by simplifying the clean ingredients of toothpaste (like xylitol and sodium lauryl sulfoacetate) into a single pressed tablet. The mint-flavored tablet is easy to use and does foam up; just simply bite down on it, then get scrubbing with a damp toothbrush, and you won’t even miss your single-use, plastic-tubed toothpaste. The whitening bits come in a glass bottle, and Bite will send refills in compostable packaging. Pearly whites, without the plastic sacrifice.
For Your Countertops
A first of its kind in the cleaning world, just-launched Blueland has taken its highly effective products down to a single tablet. The super-concentrated tablets are designed to cut down on single-use plastics, a serious problem in the cleaning industry. The brand is hoping to reduce waste by offering forever bottles with $2 cleaning concentrate refills.
An effective cleaning product via tablet might sound nonsensical, but the traditional cleaning products you have at home are not what they seem. “Conventional cleaning sprays are sold in a new plastic bottle each time and are 90 percent (or more) water, which you already have at home,” says Sarah Paiji, CEO and cofounder of Blueland. “By selling just a tablet (instead of water and plastic packaging), we can offer it for a lower price than buying a full bottle of comparable cleaner.” And it’s not just for show; the products have outperformed their chemical-laden competitors in blind lab tests.
For Your Glowing Skin
If radiance is top of mind for you, but you’re also looking for a quick solution, turn to these pill-shaped tablets from Georgia Louise. This 32-night program is perfect to start a month before a big event, like a wedding. Think of it as a potent facial boot camp.
The four weeks’ worth of freeze-dried tablets have a scheduled plan of action: Week one is hyaluronic acid to address dehydrated skin; week two is focused on building collagen for firmer skin; week three is EGF (epidermal growth factor), a highly scientific and difficult-to-formulate serum that can rebuild skin cells; and week four is vitamin C to brighten skin. The serums are in industry-changing tablet form, so they’re travel friendly and will help streamline your skin-care routine to just one, small freeze-dried tablet per night. You activate the serum with an enclosed vial of hyaluronic acid, then watch as you get glowing.
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