Hilton is Going to Keep and Recycle Your Used Bathroom Soap Bars

Marriott is moving to wall-mounted toiletries in the bathrooms of their managed North American hotels. This saves money and they can claim it’s in the name of the environment.

Hilton has a different idea. They’re going to give your used bar of soap to someone else in the form of ‘recycled’ soap.

The company announced Monday that it will collect used bars of soap from guest rooms across its hotels and recycle them into 1 million new bars of soap by October 15, which is Global Handwashing Day.

The project is in conjunction with Clean the World, a social organization that distributes soap to communities in need. Hilton (HLT) said it will collect soap from its various hotels, including Embassy Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton, Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites. The used soap is “crushed, sanitized and cut into new soap bars,” according to the company.

Hilton did the same thing back in 2011. There’s a bit of hand waiving about climate change and being environmentally friendly but this project doesn’t appear to reduce the use of soap at Hilton hotels.

(HT: Ryan)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

More articles by Gary Leff »



  1. Hilton has some more unassailable high moral ground here, certainly compared to Marriott. They’re actually spending money rather than shorting the customer and pretending that it’s for environmental reasons.

  2. Tbh as long as Marriott can make sure guests aren’t cumming into the wall mounted dispensers, I have no issue with them

  3. While I agree the move to wall-mounted dispensers is mainly driven by cost savings and then sold as a green initiative, it unquestionably does reduce the the use of plastics. While I am a “collector” of nice hotel toiletries myself, I do not blame hotels for this move as long as they can make sure the content of those dispensers is safe from manipulation.

  4. And you’re complaining about this because???

    Both of these moves (Marriott and Hilton) are good things.

  5. “There’s a bit of hand waiving” which means refraining from the use of hands.

    Unless you mean “hand waving”, which would necessarily require use of hands.

  6. And this recycled soap is not reused in the hotel? I’m fine with that…

    If it is reused in hotel I’ll be flushing any bars I have at end of stay…

  7. @YULtide: “a bit of hand waiving” would mean not having or perhaps not accepting any hands. Refraining from the use of hands would be “a bit of hand waving waiving”.

  8. Thirty-plus years ago, the NYC tabloids dubbed hotelier Leona Helmsley “The Queen of Mean”. Her reputation was perfection for her guests, but tyranny towards her employees, and one one oft-cited example of that was instead of paying for soap for her employees, taking the used soaps from the guestrooms and using those in the employee areas.

    Unlike Hilton, not sanitized.

  9. The Marriott effort results in tangible benefits, both in cost savings and reduced plastic waste.

    The Hilton effort is nothing more than PR. Think of the cost (and energy used) of collecting, transporting, reprocessing, and then repackaging and redistributing the soap as a new (but inferior) product. Do you really think this is a savings and efficiency gain? Do you truly believe this is cheaper than just making new soap? They are using extra energy (and emissions if you care about that nonsense) for nothing more than PR. If they were simply collecting them and dropping them off as is at a nearby homeless shelter, then that would be a win, but what they are actually doing is just nonsense aimed at appeasing gullible leftists.

  10. @WR2, I was fine with your opinion until I got to “gullible leftists.” At least I’m not sufficiently gullible to try to perform a sexual act with a wall-mounted soap dispenser.

  11. I truly detest shower gel in dispensers but I can put up with it for the sake of a positive impact on the environment. Or I suppose I could lug along a small soap from the decades of stashing whatever hotel soaps I did not use during a stay. How long does soap last, anyway?

  12. The dispensers don’t “dispense” much – too much trouble for me to bother using them. Maybe that is the point.

  13. According to their website Clean the World collects the soap & recycles it at their Florida site. The hotels that donate merely have to ask housekeeping to collect it. Soap that is usually thrown away & winds up in a landfill is recycled into something useful. Third world countries have high mortality rates often due to poor hygiene. If Hilton, et al. derives a PR benefit from their program then I can live with this.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *