In our downstairs bathroom, which is actually a shower room, upstairs bathroom or en-suite you won't find loads of lotions, potions and products. Shampoo, soap, shower gel, toothpaste, deodorant that's about all we need.
Buying fewer different things is one of my ways of saving money. I don't bother with make up..
I buy a medium priced Shampoo, stocking up from Poundland on our rare Ipswich visits or if it's on offer and use it sparingly.Very cheap shampoo or washing up liquid turns my very thick hair into something akin to straw. I don't wash my hair every day and no longer buy conditioner as it didn't seem to make much difference. I've got my hair really short - another way to save shampoo.
I use a moisturising shower gel and stock up from Poundland when we are in Ipswich or if I see it reduced in the supermarket. At the wash basin we use soap, it's cheaper than hand wash in a bottle and one less thing to go in the bin. The soap we use is Pure which is Morrisons own brand un-perfumed and is £1.35 for 4. It lasts ages, no perfume to make me sneeze and no colourings either. I use it on my face and it's fine. C uses it for shaving and says it's OK for that too. When we get down to a sliver the bits go into the utility room and get squidged together and used for quick hand washing between jobs.
Toothpaste is always Sensodyne, whichever sort is reduced from Approved Food, bought in bulk and we use Sensodyne toothbrushes too because they are small and quite soft. Dentists recommend a soft toothbrush, brushing too hard with a hard abrasive brush is about the worst thing you can do to your teeth. I use just a tiny amount of toothpaste, not all along the brush like they used to show on adverts, less than pea sized is enough. Sensodyne is not the cheapest but it works well. When the tube seems to have run out, cut off the top to see what's left and then cut off the bottom too. I use floss but not as often as I should, according to my dentist.
I use a roll-on deodorant, cheaper than a spray as none is wasted going everywhere. Stored upside down, to get everything out and buy whatever is on offer, preferably perfume free.
Toilet rolls are the Everyday Value double length ones from Tesco, 400 sheets per roll, 6 rolls for £1.95. I would like to buy Nouvelle which are made from recycled paper but they are very expensive. For a comparison table go to Skintdad.com. Lidl actually come out best for value for money. That's fine if you have a Lidl closeby. We don't and going to one specially for loo roll would cost us more for the diesel. They also don't compare the Tesco Double length loo rolls on this comparison chart.
The cheapest bath sponges I can find are 20p each from Wilkinsons. When we go to Ipswich I usually buy a couple to put in the cupboard. Soak a sponge in hot water with vinegar in every now and again, is good for cleaning it.
For cleaning in the bathroom I use bi-carb for the basin, Ecover Limescale stuff for the glass shower screens and, because we have REALLY hard water, Harpic in the loo and stock up when it's on special offer. I've tried all the cheaper things but nothing works like Harpic.
Bath towels are hung over the banisters at the top of the stairs where they dry quickly and are used 2 or 3 times before they go in the wash. After all, when you've had a shower you should be clean so surely a towel shouldn't be dirty and need washing after one use.
Best of all savings is that our water is heated by the Rayburn using wood or by the solar thermal thingy on the roof. When we had the new kitchen built and the bathroom moved, the builder wanted to put a pump on the shower. But because the hot water cylinder is upstairs and the bathroom downstairs ( that's how it was before too) we had never had a pump and just used gravity. The builder predicted problems with pressure but it's been OK. One less thing using electric.
* * * * *
Thanks for all the comments about Aldeburgh yesterday. The sad thing about the town is that 30-40% of the houses are second homes and holiday homes, most of the shops are top of the range posh clothes shops or deli's. House prices are crazy and in winter the place is dead, while in summer it's full of the rich and posh - that's why we rarely go in the summer!
There is a comment from Frugal in Essex, a new blogger, welcome to frugal blogland!