When you're trying to make a measurable impact on the environment, even a small action, like swapping out your regular toilet paper for a tree-free one, can add up. Not all options out there are the same, though, so when looking for the best bamboo toilet paper you'll want to go with one that's septic-safe, crafted from 100% bamboo, and free of chlorine bleach. Bonus points for brands that have eliminated plastic packaging in order to contribute even less waste.
If your primary motivation in switching your toilet paper is to be more eco-conscious, there are a number of things to keep in mind as you shop. First, a bamboo blend will be the least expensive option, but 100% bamboo rolls are typically more sustainable as they require less resources to produce. They are also usually softer and more absorbent (especially if you go with a three-ply version). Second, if you want to be confident that the paper has been sourced in an environmentally friendly and socially responsible way (which can include being panda-safe), look for a stamp of approval from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). Finally, opt for rolls that are packaged in recyclable and — if possible — plastic-free materials.
One other thing to consider with toilet paper is that it usually undergoes bleaching to achieve its aesthetically pleasing white color. That said, there are some modern technologies that have been put in place to produce products in a less toxic manner. For instance, you can find bamboo versions that use processes like Elemental Chlorine Free (ECF) bleaching, which creates less harmful waste. However, for those who prefer to steer clear of bleach entirely (particularly those prone to sensitive skin), there are 100% unbleached options, though they may not be as soft.
The best bamboo toilet paper will make the switch from traditional paper easy, and I've rounded up a list of options to get you started below. To help you get a true price comparison, take note of the number of sheets per roll.
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1. The fan favorite
- Sheets per roll: 360
All of the packaging (including the tape on the box), as well as the core of the Betterway bamboo toilet paper, is made from recycled and plastic-free materials (plus, the attractive, colorful wrap is compostable). The three-ply paper is biodegradable, septic tank-safe, and made from organic, hand-picked bamboo, and it features embossing to give you a better grip. It's also created from ECF bleaching processes and is free of BPA, scents, dyes, pesticides, and lint. The manufacturing and all bamboo harvesting for this FSC-certified toilet paper are done on local farms and does not encroach on any territory or breeding grounds of pandas.
One reviewer says: "Family and friends agree, this is great TP. Soft, absorbent, and long lasting. Was interested in it because I’m on a septic system, staying with it because it is a great product with bonus of being green."
2. The unbleached one
- Sheets per roll: 200
This three-ply paper by Elvis Smart is made from 100% unbleached bamboo and is free of lint, BPA, fragrance, and parabens. Each roll is wrapped with moisture-proof paper (instead of plastic) and packaged with recycled cardboard boxes. It's a no-frills choice (and not FSC-certified), but with no bleaching involved, it also saves on water and has fewer production by-products. It's also septic-safe.
One reviewer says: "Never thought I would be writing a review on toilet paper but here it is...The toilet paper is super soft and it is thicker as a result I do not have to use it as much. The paper has a very light brown color because it is unbleached. To me it looks cool. Would highly recommend to anyone!"
3. The value pack
- Sheets per roll: 300
Though this is the only option on this list that's not crafted from 100% bamboo — it's made from a blend of bamboo and sugarcane — the Caboo toilet paper is still a good choice if you're looking for a treeless option with a wallet-friendly price. Plus, the brand is a member of 1% For The Planet, which means it donates 1% of its sales to organizations focused on sustainability. The septic-safe and biodegradable paper is FSC-certified (and panda-friendly) and bleached using ECF processes. It's free of BPA, fragrance, parabens, and lint. And, though it is two-ply, several reviewers reported that they liked the texture: "It's sturdy but soft," wrote one. The one downside of this otherwise earth-friendly paper, though, is that it comes in plastic packaging, however, the wrap is recyclable.
One reviewer says: "My family has been buying Caboo for a few months now and we never want to go back to regular toilet paper again! We love that it's made from bamboo and better for the environment, and the thickness and quality are top notch. If you're used to ultrasoft toilet paper, this will feel rougher, but we love the softness level of this product, and love that we can get such a big package on Amazon for such a good price!"