Many of us are taking steps to live more sustainably, but are overlooking a major culprit of household waste? Cleaning products are a large source of ocean and landfill waste, and some figures say that the average household throws away between 30 and 50 plastic cleaning product bottles a year- and that’s not counting laundry products! In most supermarkets, the household cleaning aisle tends to be a single-use packaging nightmare. While recyclable packaging is a bit more eco-friendly (but not really, globally only 9% of plastic gets recycled), avoiding packaging altogether by using refillables is even better. As always, Green Queen to the rescue with a complete list of where to buy bulk home cleaning supplies. Below a guide to Hong Kong’s best BYO, packaging-free and refillable household cleaning products.
Live Zero Bulk Beauty – Sai Ying Pun
Hong Kong’s first packaging-free zero-waste store Live Zero’s beauty section has a great selection of household cleaning and bath products, from local to international brands. They also have in stock a range of natural household cleaning products like tea seed powder and vinegar.
What: Natural household cleaning substances (75% and 99% ethanol, acetic acid vinegar, baking soda, borax, citric acid anhydrous), multi-purpose bar soaps for dish and laundry, toilet cleaners, laundry and dish detergent, floor cleaning products, silica gel, soapnut berries, sodium percarbonate bleach powder.
Brands: Soapnut Republic (dish soap, liquid and powder laundry detergent, floor cleaner, toilet cleaner), Dropps (dishwasher and laundry pods), Bathe to Basics (bath products), Coconut Matter (bar soaps and deodorant), Claire’s Handmade Soap (bar soaps), Faith In Nature (hand and body soaps), Happy & Merry Mart (soaps and cleansing oils).
Where: Live Zero Bulk Beauty, 20 High Street, Sai Ying Pun. Open Monday – Saturday: 11.00am – 8.00pm; Sunday: 11.00am – 6.00pm.
Slowood – Kennedy Town
What: Bulk laundry detergent, body wash, bath and dish soaps.
Brands: Common Good (liquid laundry detergent, hand and body soaps), The Unscented Company (all-purpose cleaner, laundry detergent), Ecodis (black household soap, spray cleaner, sodium bicarbonate powder).
Where: Slowood, The Hudson, 11 Davis Street, Kennedy Town. Open daily: 10.00am – 10.00pm.
Live Zero – Sai Kung
Live Zero also has a branch in Sai Kung, where alongside their spread of bulk food products is a selection of some packaging-free household cleaning products for you to refill your containers.
What: Dishwashing and laundry liquids, multi-purpose cleaner, toilet cleaner and floor cleaner.
Brands: Soapnut Republic.
Where: Live Zero Bulk Foods Sai Kung, G/F, 5 Tak Lung Back Street, Sai Kung. Open Monday – Saturday (closed Wednesday): 10.00am – 7.00pm; Sunday: 10.00am – 6.00pm.
Lively Life – Wan Chai
Lively Life is a small retail shop on Hennessy Road in Wanchai. While previously only stocked with some personal beauty and bulk food staples, they now also have on offer some eco-friendly cleaning products.
What: Eco-friendly handmade soap, upcycled cooking oil waste soap for dishwashing.
Brands: Bella Sapone (handmade soap), custom and handmade waste-cooking-oil soap for kitchen and bathroom cleaning (oil provided by MANA!).
Where: Lively Life, UG, Shop 6, 302-308 Hennessy Road, CC Wu Building, Wan Chai. Open daily: 10.00am – 7.30pm.
SEED – Sai Kung
SEED is another bulk food and zero-waste lifestyle shop located in Sai Kung. They have a number of household cleaning products and personal care items in stock from a variety of local and global brands.
What: Bulk laundry powders, laundry liquid, bath and body soaps, skincare products.
Brands: Nellie’s All-Natural Laundry Soda (laundry powder), NOESiS (chlorine-free laundry liquid), Dr Bronner’s (bath soap), The Preface (body wash, skincare), Coconut Matter (soap bars and deodorant).
Where: SEED, 29 Yee Kuk Street, Sai Kung. Open Tuesday – Sunday: 10.00am – 7.00pm.
Organic We – Mongkok
Organic We keeps a good supply of local and regional brands offering bulk home care products and household cleaning items.
What: Dish soap powders, bar soaps and body care products.
Brands: Bathe to Basics (body wash and soaps), Organic We (tea seed powders for dishwashing).
Where: Organic We, Room 160, 5 Sai Yeung Choi Street South, Good Hope Building, Mongkok. Open Daily: 12.30pm – 8.30pm.
Ecostore Hong Kong – Various
Ecostore is a New Zealand-based company that sells a range of plant-based, eco-friendly and natural household cleaning products, as well as baby care and body care items. They have recently launched refill stations in a couple locations in Hong Kong.
What: Laundry liquid and powder, fabric softener, spray cleaners, liquid scourer, toilet cleaner, dishwasher tablets and powder, dishwasher rinse aid.
- WWF Hong Kong Panda Shop, 1 Tramway Path, Central. Open daily: 10.00am – 7.00pm.
- GREAT Food Hall, LG1, Two Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty. Open Daily: 10.00am – 10.00pm.
Bonus: Bathe to Basics Home Store
Yes, technically this is not for household cleaning products. But Bathe to Basics is worth mentioning – the company is Hong Kong-based and makes a range of natural and organic skincare and bodycare. Their products are now not only stocked in Hong Kong’s zero-waste stores but can be purchased in their very own refill location in PMQ.
What: Body and skincare products.
Brand: Bathe to Basics.
Where: Bathe to Basics Home Store, Unit S403, Block A, PMQ, 35 Aberdeen Street, Central. Open daily: 1.30pm – 7.00pm.
Lead image courtesy of Sunshine Kelly.