Mini Toiletries

Say goodbye to mini toiletries. Photo by Banalities.

A growing number of hotels are swapping out mini travel-sized toiletries in their bathrooms for large, refillable bottles in a bid to be more environmentally friendly. The regular sized shampoos, conditioners and moisturizers, which are appearing at mid to luxury hotels across the world, are refilled after guests leave, reducing the hotel’s waste. Hotels claim the toiletries – fitted with pumps or dispensers – are clean and safe.

First of all, I can’t imagine this is going down well with travelers, no matter what hotels say. After all, how can the hotels guarantee the hygiene of the products if countless other hotel-goers have had their fingers all over it? Whether the hotels have had complaints or not, I imagine many travelers are simply opting to bring their own toiletries along rather than utilize the communal ones.

Secondly, I wonder how the cosmetics companies feel about this new trend, given that the mini products placed in hotels are great advertising for their product? Sure, you might notice and enjoy the product during your brief stay at the hotel, but I find it’s the extended use of the cosmetic when you bring it home (and the subsequent realization that the product does indeed make your skin softer/hair shiner) that makes you consider purchasing that brand in the future. But now, not only do you risk being charged if you take these larger-sized toiletries home, you’re unlikely to get it past airport security thanks to the liquid restrictions.

I’m all in favor of hotels (and the rest of us, for that matter) trying to be more environmentally conscious, but surely there are better ways than making us all use the same soap. Cutting back on excessive air conditioning, supplying in-room recycling bins, providing re-usable coffee mugs, fitting energy efficient light bulbs and installing water saving shower heads (that still provide reasonable pressure – yes, they do exist) are all ways of been eco-friendly without being, well icky. Let’s be as green as possible – but we’ve gotta draw the line somewhere.

What do you think? Would you use products from the large bottles? Do you normally stash away those mini products and will you miss them?