Day 2: The Troubles With Being a Girl

Well, maybe the trouble with being me; today I have realized that I use so many different cosmetic products. They range from shampoo, to conditioner, to mouthwash, to the three hair cremes I use to keep my curly hair from becoming a frizzy mess. And where do all of these products go? Down the drain…

I feel a little bit helpless now that I have already purchased these plastic containers filled with mixtures that are contaminating our water. Is there anything I can do during No-Impact week to reduce this environmental degradation? As far as my pessimistic mind is concerned, the answer is no. I suppose I could abstain from using these products this week, but that is not to say that I won’t use them in the weeks to come. I guess then, that I should view this week as a time to reduce my use of these products so that in the future I will not purchase them (because I will have an epiphany this week that I do not need them), or I will purchase a product that does not destruct our environment as harshly. With that said, I would like to add several new goals to my No-Impact Week: only one hair product per day, shampoo only once during the rest of the week, put less toothpaste on my toothbrush (I have noticed that I do use a tube of toothpaste exceptionally quickly), and use mouthwash only once a day.

Zoe Walpuck


  1. Great discussion! And kudos to the class for taking on the No Impact challenge with such open minds and candidly sharing your experiences.

    Have any of you seen the Story of Cosmetics? It was created by the Story of Stuff team led by Annie Leonard who came to Denison a few years ago. She was and is FANTASTIC. Check it out:

  2. I may not be a girl but I still have to use some products. I wanted to go to Going Green before the project, but timing didn’t work out and its hard to get to without driving. Not to mention the cost of buying all new products. Anyone want to try baking soda toothpaste?

  3. So funny that your wrote about the toothpaste, because I was thinking the same thing this morning as I brushed my teeth! As for the hair products, I must say they had never even crossed my mind. And although theres not too much you can do (because you still need to wash your hair), I applaud for setting a new goal or yourself and cutting back.

  4. Zoe, I’ve found the exact same thing with the beauty products. We have become so dependent on these products in today’s society but they are so harmful to our water and our trash collection. I don’t use any products on my hair because it’s naturally straight but I do use a few beauty products on my face. Not using these would be tough, but I think reducing them is a great option. Your goals look realistic and productive. Good job!

  5. I definitely have been thinking a lot about all the beauty products I use on a daily basis recently, not only since NI week started, but since I really started this class! I look in my bathroom at home and I feel so guilty looking at all the shampoo bottles, almost empty mascaras, and cover-up-sticks that didn’t quite match. I have really been thinking about all the products that I put on my body that then get washed down the drain after just one day, if not one minute! I’m running out of shampoo, but I’m trying to stretch it so that I can make it to the end of the school year and then buy some natural shampoo and conditioner. And I feel your curly hair troubles…takes a lot to attempt control over it…

  6. I never really thought about all of those products either! On the other hand, I have pretty managable hair. All I ever use is shampoo and conditioner. I was wondering, if you are only going to use shampoo one more time the rest of the week, what are you going to do the other days? It is so hard being a girl sometimes! We have so much more to think about on a daily business beautywise than guys do!

  7. I know exactly how you feel. For my hair, It’s really thick so I have to use conditioner, shampoo, and straigtening spray, and shining spray. I wish their was a way to correct this other than shave my head or have my hair look terrible: both solutions I find to be very unfavorable 🙂 For my goals I’m trying to not straighten my hair everyday but every other but its really hard! I

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