Why you shouldn't use soap or shampoo in lakes

Why you shouldn't use soap or shampoo in lakes

It’s summertime. For many of us, it could mean spending weekends at the cottage, going camping, enjoying nature, going hiking, and swimming in lakes.

When comes the time to take a "shower", you may think that bringing your soap and shampoo in the lake is a good idea. Indeed, avoiding wasting water sounds great, but did you know that ingredients found in shampoos and soaps are damaging for nature?


Lake chemistry is affected by detergents and phosphates

Soaps and shampoos contain detergents, which helps to remove the dirt faster than just with water. Detergents break the surface tension of the water, which reduces the oxygen level in the water, causing harm to fish and other forms of aquatic life. Not to mention all the toxic ingredients, such as perfumes or dyes, found in popular body/hair care products that are damaging for our lakes.

Also, soaps may contain phosphorus, and this ingredient creates algae blooms. It clouds the water’s clarity, turning it in icky water.

A person swimming in a picturesque lake

What is my shampoo is biodegradable?

You may think that using an eco friendly and biodegradable product is better choice for bathing in the lake.

Unfortunately, biodegradable doesn't mean that contents will break down immediately. 

"According to the EPA, an ounce of biodegradable soap needs to be diluted in 20,000 ounces of water to be safe for fish. Now imagine all of your neighbors scrubbing down on their docks, and you can see how the health of your small lake could be significantly compromised."

In the end, even if your soap or shampoo is branded "eco-friendly" or "non toxic", it still doesn't belong into a waterway. 


A safer approach 

There's a safer way to wash your body and hair while being respectful of our ecosystem. 

First of all, choose a biodegradable and eco friendly shampoo and soap, like our shampoo bar. Fill a bucket with water from the lake and set yourself about 50 meters from the shore. Dig a little hole about 6 inches deep in the soil for disposing of soapy water. Bacteria in the soil will biodegrade the product safely! 

Friendly reminder: be kind and enjoy nature while respecting our environment 

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