For digital marketer, fashion influencer, and sustainability advocate Randa Salloum, her washroom is her oasis. “This is a sanctuary,” she says, standing inside her space. “So why wouldn’t I want to make it look pretty? Why wouldn’t I want to treat myself in my bathroom?”
The apartment she shares with her boyfriend in Vancouver’s Kitsilano neighbourhood is carefully designed throughout, but her washroom is particularly special to her—it’s where she spends careful time going through her skincare routine, engaging in the simple yet crucial act of taking time for herself.
“I spend the second-most amount of time in my bathroom because I like to really take my mornings and take my evenings,” Salloum says. “And it all revolves around my skincare.” She uses clean-medical brand Alumier for the bulk of her products, and also loves applying vitruvi Rosehip Oil; she spends a while massaging her face, too, both with a Gua Sha Tool and a multireflex roller. “I get migraines,” she says. “I get jaw pain, and when I wake up in the morning I’m super tense. So this helps relieve the tension, especially after I put on my skincare because it just glides on my face.”
The simple white room’s biggest feature is its marbled countertop, which is artfully dotted with Salloum’s self-care products—from the Marvis toothpaste to the vitruvi Black Stone Diffuser pumping out invigorating unisex aromas that both she and her boyfriend love. “Because Alex and I share the bathroom together, it’s something a bit more gender-neutral [in here],” she says. That means fresh scents like Bergamot and Eucalyptus, and blends like Retreat—which Salloum says makes her feel like she’s on vacation. “Because of the citrusy notes, it makes me feel like I’m holding an Aperol spritz,” she says with a smile. “The initial thought was when you walk into a restaurant patio, because when you walk into the patio it’s this instant feeling of, ‘Ahhhh.’” Which is exactly the kind of vibe she wants to set in her bathroom.
Salloum loves putting her diffuser on before she gets in the shower so that the aroma starts to fill the space. “It starts with scent, because your shampoo and your toothpaste and your skincare and everything has a scent to it,” she says. “Having something like a diffuser on when you’re in the shower, I feel like it adds that kick to your morning. It’s almost like having a coffee. I’ll turn it on and then I’ll pop in the shower, the steam and everything’s going; and then I hop out of the shower and it just hits me, whether it’s the Eucalyptus or the Bergamot or the Lavender. And that sets the tone for you wanting to be in your bathroom. And then the cats join me and it’s a total party.” She has three cats, and is conscious of making sure the scents she diffuses agree with them, too.
To make the space feel lived-in, framed prints by local artist Annie Axtell hang on the walls, and a snake plant sits in one corner. Over in her guest bathroom down the hall, stirring matador images by local photographer Paul Melo act as conversation-starters for visitors. But it’s in her personal bathroom that she spends the majority of her time, carefully crafting her low-impact, low-waste lifestyle.
That means hand soaps are in refillable glass bottles (purchased from Vancouver’s The Soap Dispensary); shampoo and conditioner are packageless bars from Lush; her toothbrush is biodegradable bamboo; her reusable razor from local brand Well Kept means she only has to replace the single blade every few months, and can recycle each one; her floss dispenses from a refillable glass tube; and a handcrafted bowl from local company Barter holds reusable, washable cotton pads that she has instead of the disposable kind.
“I’m an all-in or all-out kind of person, but I did do things piece by piece,” she says of transitioning her bathroom to be as eco-friendly as possible. “So my best advice is to choose one thing, do it really well, then choose another thing. The first thing that I did was the toothbrush … so I say start with your toothbrush, because you use it at least twice a day, so you’re going to get the most use out of it.” While it might seem intimidating to live a low-impact life, Salloum proves that a few simple tips and tricks can start you on the path to living more sustainably—and beautifully. As always, it starts at home.