what happens to hotel soap?

Do hotels somehow recycle soap or is it just automatically thrown away?
Strange question with an obvious answer, but i can hope. It has always bothered me to think of the hundreds of millions of little bars of soap every year that get used once and presumably tossed. I carry a soap dish with me and bring the bars home just to avoid this (I suppose I could bring my own but hey, free soap!). Soap from nicer hotels (bigger bars) can last me 20 or more showers.

I can’t imagine anything but the landfill. I carefully open just the end of mine so I can use the original wrapper to transport it home. It is another case where cheapskates can feel good about helping the environment.

Even if you don’t use some of the supplies, for sanitation reasons, they may still be pitched.

I do hope somebody in a position to do more than guess posts.

At the hotel I was at recently, they gave you a little bag so you could take it home with you.

Some charities, such as Clean the World, collect the soap from hotels and motels in their areas and recycles them by distributing to third-world countries.

Well now, that’s exactly the kind of thing i wanted to hear. Even if the program is not that widespread, at least it exists.

A lot of us collect hotel soap and such and donate it to local shelters and homeless centers.

After you’ve used it? Ick.

Taking unused, unopened soap is just stealing, no matter what you do with it after you take it.

Use soap is tossed away. If it’s unwrapped two things happen.

First of all it is sold to small independent hotels. For instance, I worked for Starwood, and when the logos on brands were changed all the wrapped, unused soap was gathered up and sold to small independent hotels.

This is why you can sometimes see a “Sheraton” or other brand name hotel soap in an independent hotel.

Other unwrapped soaps are indeed given to the Salvation Army and other groups.

On what basis? It is a consumable within the room that I paid for. If I choose to consume it while in the room or after I leave, that is my choice. The soap is part of the room rate. It is not stealing.

IRL, I don’t use bar soap. Shower gel or body wash…but no bar soap. So, the soap in my hotel rooms gets left behind.

How is it stealing if you don’t open it before you take it, but perfectly legitimately yours if you do open it before taking it? That’s ridiculous. They put the soap in the room for the guests to use, and since they can’t* do anything with it once opened, it is trash then, so they expect the soap to be used and taken. If for whatever reason you have your own soap, there is nothing wrong with taking the unopened package with you.

Now I would frown on requesting extra soaps from the hotel, but that’s still a bit of a gray area. I mean, the soaps are something of an advertising thing to some extent - that’s why they have logos on the soap bars, not just the packaging. If the hotel management sees no issue with bringing you a dozen extra bars to your room without asking why you want them, I have a hard time seeing how that is wrong. I mean, a bit exploitive on the person taking them’s part, and I certainly wouldn’t do it, but the hotel management certainly has the option to say, “Um, no, 1 bar per day is plenty of soap for any room. Really. You don’t need 23 bars between now and breakfast.”

*I say “can’t” because I expect there are some sort of laws about that, but since I don’t actually know, that is really swag on my part.

OMG! It could be a bit dirty! How will it ever get clean?

No, it’s not. **Omar Little **is correct. In fact, as it’s advertising for the hotel, they want you to do it. Next time you stay in a decent hotel, ask them, they might even happily press extras on you. Last time I stayed at the Disney hotel, they loaded up my arms with so many little extras I could barely carry them back.

They could remelt used soap, but I don’t know if anyone does. The little unused bars can be donated. Do not donate the used ones.

This germophobia is insane. It’s SOAP! Wash it off and it is good to go! I’ll happily use a bar of soap handed to my by a soaking wet naked hobo who just used it to give his crabs a bath. It’s SOAP!

You stay in … rather interesting hotels.

I find it surprising anybody would want to use soap after who knows who may have used it.

I’ve stayed in hostels.

Again, it’s SOAP! You wash it, the layer that has been in contact with another person is washed OFF.

It’s easy to take pieces of used bar soap and turn it into liquid hand soap.
http://www.ehow.com/how_9095_make-liquid-hand.html

method 2
http://askville.amazon.com/make-liquid-soap-bar/AnswerViewer.do?requestId=9188941

I bet some throw it away though. I know that when some hospitals have left over toilet paper rolls when they are cleaning (and putting new rolls out), they just throw those away.

I stayed at a hotel once where they just threw them away. They told me when I asked.

I’m not only surprised, I’m also a little bit weirded out.