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Small bottles of toiletries equal great luxury?

Small bottles of toiletries equal great luxury?

Old Jun 25, 19, 2:14 pm
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Small bottles of toiletries equal great luxury?

As we know from previous discussions in this forum toiletries are an important part of the luxury experience. These toiletries come often in small plastic bottles and therefore produce huge amounts of plastic waste. As there are growing concerns about plastic waste the question arises, how important are the small bottels to you in a luxury hotel? Would dispenser bottles of Aromatherapy or Le Labo be acceptable? What could be alternative solutions to reduce the palstic waste created in hotel bathrooms?
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Old Jun 25, 19, 3:47 pm
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Originally Posted by Tellerwaescher View Post
As we know from previous discussions in this forum toiletries are an important part of the luxury experience. These toiletries come often in small plastic bottles and therefore produce huge amounts of plastic waste. As there are growing concerns about plastic waste the question arises, how important are the small bottels to you in a luxury hotel? Would dispenser bottles of Aromatherapy or Le Labo be acceptable? What could be alternative solutions to reduce the palstic waste created in hotel bathrooms?
I was under the impression hotels that give you decent size plastic bottles of shampoos, etc. refill the partially used ones instead of replace. At least I've seen it at one hotel when I was coming back during room keeping. I also recall a hotel with beautiful stone containers. I actually think the small plastic containers are awful as I generally use at least two - just give people one decent container.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 3:51 pm
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I hate being guilt tripped into using less plastic.

I will, however, happily accept refillable dispenser bottles.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 5:24 pm
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As this is off topic for this forum I am going to move the thread to TravelBuzz
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Old Jun 25, 19, 5:40 pm
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I'll admit it here: I've reversed my opinion on the little plastic bottles.

When I first encountered the refillable dispensers (beyond a locker room or hostel), I was at an Aloft hotel shortly after Starwood rolled out the brand. I rolled my eyes, thinking it a blend of crass cost-cutting and "something millennials will like." To me, it smacked of being a low-brow hotel, which was offensive given that I was paying $150+ to stay in this particular Starwood. My take was leave the dispensers at Motel 6, but keep the individual bottles at anything wearing the Starwood brand. (I never see Four Points anymore so whether that should have them never really crossed my mind.)

However, in more recent years, I've gradually accepted two things: (1) plastic bottle waste is worse for the environment than *not* having plastic bottle waste and (2) as it turns out, I don't really care or even know what kind of shampoo I use. My stuff at home is whatever Costco had on sale. I figure it's all marketing anyway.

So, I now accept the dispensers, but I also can see where a luxury hotel would want to be able to provide a known brand for people who care about this stuff. Like I said, I don't know the brands, but some people do...and maybe a luxe hotel should have both options.

I do like bar soap, which I figure they can still deliver in a biodegradable package. But I don't care what brand it is.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 5:41 pm
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I like the small bottles and always take the partly-used ones home and use them at the gym. Same with the soap. (Yes, I AM frugal- more $$$ for travel.) And, if I'm in a road trip with multiple hotel stays, I may re-use the shampoo from a previous stay rather than open another.

Over 10 years ago I stayed in a hotel in Zurich that had a single dispenser in the shower, which was supposedly body wash AND shampoo. I was a little skeptical that it would do both jobs well, but supported the idea of getting rid of all the plastic mini-bottles.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:01 pm
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I wish more hotels would get rid of those containers and use dispensers instead.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:26 pm
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Originally Posted by Tellerwaescher View Post
As we know from previous discussions in this forum toiletries are an important part of the luxury experience.
Maybe to some. I never understand how passionately some feel about the deep symbolism and meaning the brand name on a few pieces of plastic with 98% the same mix of chemicals have to some people.

One of the best locations I've stayed had dispensers. It also had the on/off and temperature controls at the opposite end from the shower head. Ya know - where you can easily reach them. It was well-designed, IMHO.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:31 pm
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Originally Posted by CPRich View Post
... 98% the same mix of chemicals ...
Slight tangent but this kind of stat is grossly meaningless. By DNA all humans are 99+ percent the same. Why do we put such fierce thought into whom to hire, whom to marry, whom to vote for, etc.?
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Old Jun 25, 19, 7:11 pm
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Originally Posted by Athena53 View Post
I like the small bottles and always take the partly-used ones home and use them at the gym. Same with the soap. (Yes, I AM frugal- more $$$ for travel.) And, if I'm in a road trip with multiple hotel stays, I may re-use the shampoo from a previous stay rather than open another.

Over 10 years ago I stayed in a hotel in Zurich that had a single dispenser in the shower, which was supposedly body wash AND shampoo. I was a little skeptical that it would do both jobs well, but supported the idea of getting rid of all the plastic mini-bottles.
I have to agree. I take the mini bottles home. The ones I don't use, I donate to charities. Ones that I do use, I refill and use during travel. Especially shampoos... The ones in the hotels are nice and fancy and they smell nice... But I need a few rounds of H&S once in a while...and I don't want to buy a whole bottle if I can't finish it.
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Old Jun 26, 19, 12:16 am
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There are several issues I have with large refillable dispensers based on past experience. One is that sometimes due to the large quantity of the shower gel/shampoo, the product goes bad because most of these products have a shelf life after they are opened. If under sealed conditions, they can last quite long but once open they probably last 6 months to a year depending on temperature and humidity. I was using one of these products from an airport lounge shower and it felt kind of funny so I am kind of wary of using from them nowadays.

Another issue is the hygiene problem. Some of these refillable dispensers will have water seeping into the containers and that does not seem to be particularly hygienic after hundreds of guests who have used them prior. Though some newer ones might have improved on this problem.

Lastly, there is the issue of products being mislabelled or the staff at hotels or airport lounges filling the products onto the wrong bottles and mixing them up. I had this happen before as well where a product labelled as shampoo dispensed conditioners instead.

With these in mind, I always bring those small toiletry kits I take from past hotel stays whenever I travel. So I still hope that hotels continue with individual travel packs of amenity kits or give travelers the choice.
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Old Jun 26, 19, 12:57 am
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Extremely important in our household. They come with a tamper-proof seal unlike those jars in the shower that get refilled and not always secured. I don't care about the plastic and if hotels did they would leave a recycling bin in the room. Plus, because of TSA, if I come across a luxury amenity in a hotel I like (i.e. L'Occitane), it's nice to take along in my carry-on for hotels that offer more basic amenities.
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Old Jun 26, 19, 2:18 am
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A large dispenser that is refilled I'm more than happy with. That's what I do at home with those products that I can buy refills for.

In a hotel room if for instance they provided 300ml dispensers, such that you would find in the hotels public bathrooms, I would be perfectly fine with that.
You don't go into a washroom and take the large bottle of handwash or lotion with you do you so why should you feel that you should take the large ones in the hotel room?

It is a mindset change, but if the toiletries in hotels weren't packaged and treated as giveaway items that could hopefully at least go someway in reducing the wastage...

...oh to live in an ideal world
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Old Jun 26, 19, 3:36 am
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The vast majority of the population does not stay in luxury hotels. The vast majority of shampoo is dispensed by people at home from large containers that aren't used by a hundred other people and get refilled by a stranger.

If it concerns you that much, then take the unused product home, or donate it to charity. There are bigger issues in the world than this.
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Old Jun 26, 19, 3:49 am
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The small bottles are increasingly being banned in the more forward-looking areas, so it's only a matter of time before they will disappear altogether. As an AirBnB host, I have mixed feelings about this. I currently supply Molton Brown toiletries in small containers (it costs about $20 per changeover in my four bathroom property). Clearly changing over will save a large amount of money, but it will also involve purchasing branded larger containers, which will need to be screwed to the wall. Change brands and you leave screw holes in the wrong places. I guess I'm currently in the "change is difficult and therefore bad" frame of mind.
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