25 June 2009

No to PVC, Yes to Glass in the Bath

We recycled an old bathtub, but since we normally take showers (less water needed), we needed something to avoid splashbacks. Most shower curtains are made from PVC, a plastic we try to avoid wherever possible due to its negative impact on human health and the environment throughout its entire life cycle, at the factory, in our homes, and in the trash. You can visit this PVC-free campaign for more details, or simply read what it is really all about on Catalan designer Martí Guixé’s PVC (!) shower curtain (bottom image).

There are of course PVC-free shower curtains on the market (non-vinyl, recyclable plastics, natural fibres treated with bees wax…), but we decided to opt for a healthier (some plastics emit an healthy chemicals when heated by the water of the shower, which are then breathed in) and more durable (both fibres and plastics get mouldy) option, a simple glass sheet. Glass is easily recyclable and is even available as already recycled. It is also easy to maintain (spray with vinegar and water and dry with newspaper), doesn’t become mouldy, lasts for a long time and many different designs are available (framed and frame-less). The initial cost might be a little higher than that of a shower curtain, but we believe it is worth it and pays off in the long run.

Other eco-friendly solutions in the R3project bathroom are recycled plastic slate tiles, the stop-flush toilet and aerators in the tab, the second hand mirror, the Kalahari sink, low impact ceramic floor tiles, CFL light bulbs and white containers made from recyclable plastic (IKEA, see photo above)…

Martí Guixé's "MADE OF PVC" shower curtain.


Unknown said...

Can't help but nod assent. And isn't glass a whole lot sexier than vinyl?

Γιάννης Καραμήτρος said...

I read about your house at a Greek Ecological magazine and I want to congratulate you since you have done a great job.