Simplifying the Shower

Most showers are ill-equipped to corral the stuff that we "need" to have with us to get clean. We install new hardware and suction cups and shower towers to contain the toppling plastic bottles. When really, we should just toss the bottles!

This post is part of a Monday series on simplifying. The series began with 10 Reasons to Start Simplifying Now.

I’m enjoying this mission of simplifying my home. I find the results satisfying: our home has more breathing room, and the things I choose to keep are useful or special in some way.

The process of simplifying isn’t always simple, though, and I often make a mess while I’m “evaluating” items. When I go on my simplifying kicks, Eric groans and calls me a holy terror.

“Are you simplifying again?” He asks, as I wander around the apartment, peering into cupboards and rummaging through closets.

“Yes! It’s good, though! Really. It’s good to simplify.”

And while simplifying isn’t my husband’s hobby, we do share a vision for what we want our home to be like. This is my way of helping us get there. He lets me do it…as long as I don’t start simplifying away all his things!

One area that we both agree benefits from a good de-clutter is the shower.

The shower collects the clutter of

  • shampoos (more than one kind, of course)
  • conditioners (ditto)
  • body washes
  • loofahs
  • washcloths
  • scrub brushes
  • bar soap (for the guys)
  • razors
  • shaving cream
  • body scrub
  • bubble bath
  • plastic kids’ toys

Why do teenage girls, and their moms, and 20-somethings, and every other woman have soooo many hair and body products, anyway?

Simplifying the Shower -

Most showers are ill-equipped to corral the stuff that we “need” to have with us to get clean. We install new hardware and suction cups and shower towers to contain the toppling plastic bottles. When really, we should just toss the bottles!

This is how we’ve decided to simplify the shower: we share the same products. Our shower has

  • 1 bottle of shampoo
  • 1 bottle of conditioner
  • 1 bar of soap

It wasn’t so hard, really. When I got “natural” a few years ago, I purged a lot of body products that contained harmful ingredients.

I’ve replaced them with items that are gentler on our skin and hair and have “neutral” fragrances and packaging. The Yes to Carrots shampoo works for both of us, and I use the conditioner. We use the oatmeal-and-almond Yardley London bar soap. It’s inexpensive and isn’t harsh or drying.

Nope, I didn’t even keep the fruity-scented shaving gel. It’s a rip-off, and I’m tired of wiping it off the walls when I press the pump too hard. Now I just use a dab of shampoo.

I’m a simplifier, really, not a minimalist. But when it comes to organizing the shower, minimalism makes sense.

How many bottles do you have in your shower? Are there any you can toss?

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  1. This is one thing I thought of doing myself a while ago. I was cleaning the shower and realized that there were way too many things in there, for just the two of us! And some I didn’t even really use. It kind of needs re-organizing now, but Hubby uses a shampoo/conditioner combination, I have one bottle of each, he uses bar soap, I alternate between a different bar soap (also Yardley’s, the lavender scent) and body wash. And there’s my razor. Our shower curtain doesn’t stay closed well enough on its own to prevent puddles outside the tub, so we use another bottle of shampoo (an old one that we don’t actually use for hair) to keep the curtain in place.

    Do you have any ideas/advice for using up all those little bits of bar soap that seem to be useless, but that I can’t bring myself to throw away because I KNOW there must be a use for them? 🙂

    1. No, I don’t really on the bar soap! When it gets down to the small pieces, we usually put it by the sink to use it up for handwashing. It does get the sink rim a little messy, but the soap gets used up quickly and it’s easy to wipe away the residue. Let me know if you figure anything out on that one!(;

      1. Y’all need to make (or buy, if you aren’t that handy) soap savers! They’re little drawstring bags you put the soap in. There’s a super easy (and free!) crochet pattern for one on Crochet Spot.

        (Not affiliated with Crochet Spot at all, I just love her patterns. 🙂 )

  2. Oh this is great! My hub can tell when I’m on a simplify spree, too! I cannot figure out how soooo many bottles find their way under the sink cabinet and into the shower! My hubby traveled a lot and was always bringing back the hotel sample bottles. Last Christmas, I donated them all (the unused ones, of course) to our homeless outreach/drive. Whew! 🙂

  3. I’ve found using a bit of conditioner instead of shaving cream the best way to go, and it moisturizes at the same time!

  4. I did a simplifying purge in my shower this past week since I had finished my personal soap, shampoo and conditioner in the same week. Funny I should come across this article today 🙂
    I too decided to forgo the shave gel as I Never use it. My girls and I share shampoo, conditioner and they have some bubble bath and of course my razor. My husband has his couple items on the back corner shelf.

  5. Our shower is not that bad but— PLEASE don’t open the doors under the sink that is a fright!!! I have who knows what under there!!! That is my next rainy day project.

  6. When cleaning out unwanted shower gels and shampoos (I was a couponer to the death for a while) remember the Senior Centers. These are items folks on a fixed income can not afford. I am going home box in hand and taking in shampoos and the like tomorrow. The makeup I have bought because I had a coupon I am donating to Battered Women’s Shelter.

  7. Instead of using a dab of shampoo to shave your legs with, use a dab of CONDITIONER! 🙂 Works so much better and leaves your legs silky!!

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