The bathroom accessory helping to save the planet

Kiwi businesswoman Clare Wilson was an early adopter of solid bar soaps, using them because they were better for the planet without their single-use plastic packaging. But there was a fly in the ointment: she was frustrated by how much of the bar turned into a soggy mess because of unreliable storage methods.

Realising she couldn’t be the only person annoyed by how much product ended up as expensive mush on the shower floor, she set out to solve the problem. Ten months later, aged 49, she launched her invention, the Block Dock – a colourful, powder-coated aluminium wall-mounted soap holder that has become a hot-ticket item across NZ and Australia (and to places as far flung as Canada).

Made in Dunedin and sent out from Invercargill by Southland disAbility Enterprises, the Block Dock is designed to dry bars fast, so they last longer. Over 35,000 Block Docks are out there, working hard in people’s showers – with no sign of sales slowing.

Clare Wilson, founder/inventor of The Block Dock, Nelson, New Zealand. Photography Tim Cuff.

“I invented this product because I was sick of the good money I spent on shampoo bars turning into soggy mush. Choosing an eco-friendly option shouldn’t mean more waste and I really didn’t want others to give up on their journey to a more sustainable option because of this frustration. I wanted to do what I could to help facilitate that change so I designed a simple but effective accessory that makes using solid bars a notably better experience,” Clare says.

The NZ-designed and made Block Docks:

  • Reduce soap and shampoo waste
  • Allow you to get more washes from every bar
  • Stop messy drips and bars going soggy
  • Get people to switch and stay switched to bars and the subsequent difference this makes to the environment
  • Supports the local economy, being made and distributed here

The white Block Dock in wide is Clare’s best-seller, with over 800 positive reviews.

Her range has since expanded to include docks in various sizes, additional bases for flat surface use, Razor Dock razor and shaving bar holder, Brush Dock toothbrush and toothpaste holders (to stop bamboo toothbrushes going mouldy), travel containers, and her own range of made-for-her Block haircare, shaving and soap bars.

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