Hello from Virginia - And a question about the hobby and plastic

SoapMakingForum

Help Support SoapMakingForum:

nirvosa

New Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2020
Messages
1
Reaction score
1
Hi there! I've been interested in soap making for a few years now but never really had the time or space to really go all in. Now that I've finished grad school and am in a much more financially stable place, I'd really like to give the hobby a try (and not just soap but some cosmetics/skincare too).

One thing that is giving me pause is the amount of waste I may end up generating as a result of it. This year one of my goals is to eliminate as much plastic as possible in my personal grooming routine, with one product at a time as I use things up. Which isn't going as badly as I thought it might, pretty well actually!

I know I can get olive oil and coconut oil in glass/tins but it seems everything else is packaged in plastic. I've learned that a lot of colored plastics cant be recycled (like mixing paint, and virgin/new plastic is better than degraded plastic for buyers). It seems recycling plastic is almost pointless and I've come to agree that its better to simply avoid it to begin with, if possible.

So are there any crafting suppliers that package their items in glass, tin, paper, cardboard? Anything non plastic?? I know mountain rose herbs is an option but even their shea butter is in plastic tubs. With tubs I can see its at least re-useable as a container, but what about those ziploc type plastic baggies? Those can only be trashed (you can re-use but who wants a million scruffy looking plastic baggies around??). I know plastic is ideal since it is convenient and non reactive with certain materials but isn't there a supplier out there willing to package the other stuff that doesn't require plastic in something else??

How do you veteran crafters handle this?
 

shunt2011

Staff member
Admin
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Messages
14,952
Reaction score
9,109
Location
Michigan
You would need to contact the suppliers to see if they have alternative packaging. Most likely not. I was getting my Coconut oil locally in 50lb metal containers. However, their price went way up. I get the majority of my oils/butters from Soaper's choice as I purchase in large quantities.

Wholesale Supplies Plus package their FO's in glass. Again, most package in plastic. The main reason for using plastic is shipping costs.
 

Zany_in_CO

Saponifier
Joined
Mar 9, 2017
Messages
4,729
Reaction score
3,516
Location
SE Denver CO
Hiya Nirvosa and welcome! Great question!
TIP: You will get more replies if you start a new thread with your question about plastic use. Many of us are concerned about it and there are a few threads on the topic. Sadly, not many of us read/reply to the Introduction Forum. :(
 

Mobjack Bay

Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2019
Messages
2,524
Reaction score
3,951
Location
Virginia
Welcome from another Virginian! Our numbers are growing :). I’m an enthusiastic hobbyist who gives away lots of soap. I buy what I can in bulk, but that sets up the challenge of properly storing oils and butters until I can use them.
 

lsg

Staff member
Admin
Joined
Oct 14, 2007
Messages
13,547
Reaction score
5,105
Welcome to the forum.:)
 

TheGecko

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2019
Messages
882
Reaction score
1,029
Location
Oregon
Hi there! I've been interested in soap making for a few years now but never really had the time or space to really go all in. Now that I've finished grad school and am in a much more financially stable place, I'd really like to give the hobby a try (and not just soap but some cosmetics/skincare too).

One thing that is giving me pause is the amount of waste I may end up generating as a result of it. This year one of my goals is to eliminate as much plastic as possible in my personal grooming routine, with one product at a time as I use things up. Which isn't going as badly as I thought it might, pretty well actually!

I know I can get olive oil and coconut oil in glass/tins but it seems everything else is packaged in plastic. I've learned that a lot of colored plastics cant be recycled (like mixing paint, and virgin/new plastic is better than degraded plastic for buyers). It seems recycling plastic is almost pointless and I've come to agree that its better to simply avoid it to begin with, if possible.

So are there any crafting suppliers that package their items in glass, tin, paper, cardboard? Anything non plastic?? I know mountain rose herbs is an option but even their shea butter is in plastic tubs. With tubs I can see its at least re-useable as a container, but what about those ziploc type plastic baggies? Those can only be trashed (you can re-use but who wants a million scruffy looking plastic baggies around??). I know plastic is ideal since it is convenient and non reactive with certain materials but isn't there a supplier out there willing to package the other stuff that doesn't require plastic in something else??

How do you veteran crafters handle this?
Most fragrance oils come in plastic bottles; Crafter's Choice and Brambleberry are two that I know use glass, the rest use plastic bottles. There are some companies that use aluminum bottles. I don't know of any colorants...mica, clay, powder, oxides, etc that come in glass...usually plastic or mylar ziplock bags and hard plastic containers. Unless I scale up to a point when I'm getting those huge metal drums, almost all my oils and butters come in plastic or bags; I do get Avocado Oil in glass. You might find some supplies who do uses cardboard for hard oils and butters, but they are still going to line with plastic so the oils/butters don't seep through and you end up with a mess.

I reuse and recycle as much as I can. All my empty colorant containers get snapped up by my sister's 'stamping' group. I get my Coconut Oil from Costco and have several friends who use the containers to store dry goods in. My Shea and Cocoa Butters come double-bagged and that second bag makes for great yarn storage.
 
Top