Cotton buds - how to live better without?


Banned in the Member States of the European Union from 2021, cotton swabs are anti-ecological and even dangerous for health. How can we manage to do without, while keeping our ears clean?

Enough is enough. Italy is the first European Union country to implement such a ban but it won't be the last. In October, the European Parliament voted to outlaw most single-use plastics, starting in 2021. Because it is now known: the small sticks of plastic that tickle us gently the eardrum are harmful. And not only for the planet. Résultat de recherche d'images pour "cotton buds"

Bye-bye cotton buds

Banned from compost, not always biodegradable, the cotton bud is extremely polluting, as well as toothbrushes. Some people use it daily, others do not know how to do without it anymore. In France alone, 1.2 million tonnes are collected each year. Too often thrown into the toilet bowl, fleece sticks inevitably end up in the rivers and oceans. A sad fate for the fish already bathing in a tide of plastic. 

The wadded stick is also considered harmful to health by many health professionals. If cleaning ears by pushing a cotton stick has entered the world years ago, it's been almost as long as doctors repeat that it is neither necessary nor very smart to do so. Clean the visible part, yes. But without penetrating inside the ear canal. At the risk of driving the wax to the point of having plugs generating themselves infections. Not to mention the trauma that can occur during a "cotton swab accident".

For all these reasons, it might be time to banish these sticks from the bathroom forever. But how to do without to clean your ears otherwise?

The good old wipe

Image associéeThis option seems by far the simplest and greenest of all. As mentioned above, you do not need to clean the ears thoroughly. Only the "meatus", meaning the opening of the ear, deserves a small daily toilet. Thus, after the shower, simply wipe the contour of the ear to eliminate traces of cerumen which, remember, is not a dirty secretion but an antiseptic protective film that serves to limit risks of infections, itching and painful irritation.

The auditory spray

Less eco-friendly but more cautious, the auditory spay is very effective in the event of earwax plugs or discomfort at the bottom of the ear. In children as in adults, it guarantees a deep cleaned ear but safe. Be careful not to use it too often. The notice will warn you that, even with natural products, the hearing srpay is used only exceptionally.

Silicone swab

The silicone ear cleaner is the so-called improved version of the good old cotton swab. With its silicone stick, flexible and reusable, it fits at the entrance of the auditory canal to extract the cerumen. The medical grade silicone head can be used up to 2000 times, which corresponds to a 3 years long daily use. Different heads are adapted to various uses: cleaning the ears, cleaning or adjusting the make-up. After a quick rinse they can be used again.


Japanese ear cures

If there are biodegradable cotton swabs, these can also disappear over time. So for a 100% green version, we opt for Japanese ear cures, better known as oriculis. Straight from Japan, this small curved stick is made of wood, mostly bamboo. In addition to being entirely natural, it is mostly reusable and therefore economical. Note that for oriculi, the rule remains the same. Never push it too far into the ear as this can damage the eardrum.


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