I realized I have been staring at the same disposable cotton balls for three years. I do not use them any more, so they have just been on my shelf, sitting there undisturbed.
Enough is enough.
My mom uses them, so I will be giving them to her. Thanks, Mom! :)
When you've decided to commit to not using disposable packaged products, you have several options for dealing with what's already in your house.
Option 1: Use it up
You can just finish up whatever product it is before replacing it with a less wasteful/more natural alternative.
This is best if there is just a little bit of shampoo left in the container, just a couple of drops left in the conditioner bottle and/or the ingredients are somewhat natural.
Option 2: Donate it to a shelter or food pantry
If you have an UNOPENED package of something (food, toiletries, feminine supplies, etc.) that is not expired, see if you can donate it to your local shelter or food pantry.
Option 3: Give it to someone who will end up buying it anyway
If you have a mostly-full bottle of something (shampoo, lotion, etc.) see if a close friend or family member would take it.
Option 4: Last resort
If you feel uncomfortable giving something away or donating it because of its ingredients, or all of your friends are hippies who don't use disposable products either, you might have to throw it away. If its a bath product, you could empty the contents into the trashcan (especially if it contains microbeads), and recycle the container. If you're getting rid of a toxic cleaning product, you may want to take it to a hazardous waste disposal center in your area.