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Soap that breaks like a chocolate bar improves hygiene & reduces plastic waste

01 July 2020

A bar of soap which breaks into segments like chocolate will help reduce plastic waste & reassure consumers it hasn’t been cross-contaminated with other surfaces.

Product design undergraduate Bradley Goulding, 21, says that today’s plastic soap dispensers and shower gel bottles create unnecessary waste and consumers are put off traditional bars of soap for fears that they get dirty by repeat usage.
So, he created a way for soap to be broken off in the right amounts to allow people to wash in the shower or bath and have a fresh piece to use every time.
“As someone who loves to go on holiday, as well as frequently travelling to and from university, it was apparent that I was using excess amounts of toiletries,” said Bradley Goulding, who studies at Nottingham Trent University (NTU).
“It’s not an environmentally friendly way to travel, particularly when you consider that toiletries make up a large part of the 5.5 billion plastic bottles that escape recycling each year within the UK.
“But not only that, in today’s context of COVID-19, it’s more important than ever for consumers to feel reassured that what they’re touching hasn’t come into contact with anything that could harm them either.
“So, I was keen to design something which gave people more reassurance about hygiene while also helping reduce the amount of unnecessary plastic waste that’s created.”
Goulding’s design is based on using a breakable ‘stick’ of soap, rather than a traditional bar.
It is part of an entire travel wash kit which he has designed to be more hygienic and environmentally friendly, which includes similar sticks of cold-pressed toothpaste and deodorant.
The travel bag rolls out and is easily cleaned, with removable and breathable materials used. It can be completely separated and wiped clean thoroughly in order to maintain product longevity and hygiene levels. 
The sticks have their individual compartments within the pack so each stick of toiletry item can be kept separate and clean.
Goulding, from Bedford, added: “The feedback received so far has been highly positive and, if possible, it would be amazing and such a huge achievement to take this product to market.” 
He created a working prototype and his design has gone on public display as part of NTU’s 2020 virtual product design degree show.
The virtual show – named NTU Design Industries – encompasses a range of final year designs, products and furniture, by graduating students in the university’s School of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment.
Product Design Senior Lecturer Paul Kennea, who oversaw Goulding’s design, said: “Bradley has created a travel wash kit which is simpler, kinder to the environment and which provides consumers with more reassurance about safety and hygiene.
“It’s an excellent example of how innovative thinking can help reinvent existing products to make them better and more appropriate to the ever-changing world that we live in.”
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