3 ways your daily beauty routine can help solve the water crisis


Water shedding is real: time to help SA conserve water, and look beautiful doing it too!

by Brenda Bryden

Water is a real worry right now. A crisis has always been on the cards for semi-arid South Africa, and we might be looking at the start of it. Restrictions are in place all over the country, and the Free State last week became the first province to announce actual water shedding, and it’s looking grim.

Fortunately, there’s much we can, and have to do, to alleviate the impending crisis. But did you know you could start with your daily beauty routine?

Here are three cool ideas for having gorgeous, naturally glowing skin, and saving bucket loads of water doing it:


1. Use grey water-safe products

Even if you don’t have a grey water filtration system at home, you and your family can safely recycle the water you use when washing to water the garden. You just need to invest in grey water-safe personal care products.

Natural Beauty, for example, is a completely grey water-safe range of skincare products, from a scrub, to toner and various cleansers. All-natural, petrochemical and paraben-free, not tested on animals and the run-off water from washing your face is totally safe to use for watering your plants. What’s more, it’s available from most major retailers: Pick n Pay, Checkers and now even Clicks stores around the country.

To gather the water you’ve used for washing, you could simply forego the tap and go a little retro: use a pitcher and ceramic basin to wash your face in (who knew grandma was right all this time?). The kids should find this practice quaint enough to love.

Alternatively, put a bucket in the shower and try to catch as much of the water before it goes down the drain.


2. Go with a dry hair shampoo

Dry shampoos aren’t just for the gym. Especially second-day hair that needs a bit of a pick-me-up can really use a good and easy to make home treatment.

Here’s a cool video posted by the lovelies at showing just how easy it is to make your own DIY dry hair shampoo from stuff you already have in the cupboards at home:



You’ll need

  • Baking soda
  • Corn flour (cornstarch, mielieblom)
  • For brunettes only: some cocoa powder

Just combine one part baking soda and one part corn flour (brunettes add ½ part of cocoa powder) in a small shaker and mix well. Work the powder into the roots and massage it into your hair. Done!

What’s more, you can save some time using this method if running late in the morning. Bonus.


3. Don’t bath, shower

Yes, you totally save water when showering: an eight-minute shower with a standard showerhead will use about 60 litres of water while the average bath consumes about 80 litres. And, some water-wise optimised showers (using aerated, regulated showerheads) can use just 32 litres while knocking four minutes off the time taken to wash and rinse.

The beauty of a shower as opposed to a bath is that it is the best way to get squeaky clean as you wash and rinse your entire body under a stream of clean, constantly running water, and the water running over your body feels a bit like a massage. Plus, if you alternate hot and cold water it helps release tension and invigorates the body. From a skincare point of view, a lukewarm shower won’t dry out skin or hair; rather it helps the skin absorb moisture.

There you go, three ways you can help SA prevent a more severe water crisis, and look gorgeous doing it too!

Got any of your own water-saving beauty tricks to share? Let us know in the comment below.


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About the author

Brenda Bryden

Brenda Bryden

Brenda is a true word nerd: sub-editor (read grammar nazi), features writer and content creator. She is passionate about reading (read bibliophile), playing board games, cooking and entertaining, music, the beach, fast cars (read speed freak) and animals. When not reading, writing or editing, she can be found walking her rescue dogs, pandering to her two cats' every whim, recycling/upcycling and serving her community.


    • Hi Chelsea, glad you asked. No, Dove is not grey water safe, as far as we can tell. Not to mention that it’s not advisable using a bar soap for your face at all! We’d recommend Natural Beauty: It is grey water safe, and there’s a range of different cleansers, clarifying toner and facial scrub, so you can select the right kind for your skin type and needs. Stay beautiful!

  • Thank you for a fantastic article. I’ve already started using a bucket to catch the grey water when I shower, and have been able to water my indoor jungle daily. Its not much, but its my small effort to conserve some water.