September 3, 2021News
Sustainability is one of the hottest topics in the beauty industry right now. While we often look at our beauty routine as a part of our wellness and self-care routine – giving us an instant mood boost – there’s more to it than meets the eye. The only way we can prevent climate change and create a better future for our planet is by changing our daily routine to become more sustainable.
Your bathroom is where you probably go to do your makeup and skincare routine. While it might be your own little paradise, it’s also one of the most polluting spaces in your home. Most of the beauty products you’re using – even those with a natural ingredients – are harming our planet and causing irreversible damage. What might be a pick-me-up for your skin could take hundreds of years to decompose in a landfill or our oceans.
Everything from plastic packaging to chemicals from cosmetics ending up in our oceans and causing chaos for marine life are things we have to consider. If you want to become a more sustainable individual who cares about the planet, you need to take a hard look at your beauty routine and ask where you can make changes to become more earth-friendly.
Sometimes, it’s the smallest things that make the biggest difference. Just think of all the good we did when we ditched plastic straws for eco-friendly alternatives. Rome wasn’t built in a day – and your sustainability journey will take time. Just think of how much of an impact you could make just by getting rid of facial wipes from your routine. Trust us. You could be saving the lives of hundreds of marine life and helping to cut down on landfill.
Although beauty brands are looking to innovate and meet the growing demands for sustainable beauty products, you have a role to play in this change as well. In fact, it can’t happen without you. The choice is yours – do you want to help save the planet?
We’re sharing five easy swaps that you can make to turn your beauty routine into a more earth-friendly ritual that is kind to your skin and the planet we call home.
Did you know that around 80 billion plastic shampoo and conditioner bottles are through out every year? That’s a lot of plastic – and just from those two products. Thanks to innovation in the beauty industry, there’s no need for you to be using a shampoo or conditioner that comes in a plastic bottle.
Most of the brands who are taking a sustainability pledge had been introducing solid shampoo and soap bars as an alternative to their plastic-packaged liquid formulas.
Just this one change to your routine can make a huge difference – and here’s how:
Using a ‘naked’ or plastic-free product means that you’re cutting down on packaging. If it’s a ‘naked’ soap or shampoo, you’re leaving no waste behind. Any bars that come with packaging typically use eco-friendly material to cut down on their environmental impact.
As your product has come in a solid form, it means that there isn’t unnecessary water being used as a ‘filler’ in the formula. The only water it needs is what you use while washing or showering.
These products also weigh less than plastic bottles, meaning that they cut down on carbon emissions as they take less space during transportation.
Just this one switch can do all this.
Let’s get one thing straight. Face wipes are the enemy.
While they might be convenient to use after a night out or when you’re too tired to do your skincare routine, their environment impact would beg to differ. The UK alone uses 11 billion wet wipes every year – with most of them ending up in landfill or flushed down the toilet, meaning that they end up in our oceans.
In the UK, wet wipes account for over 90% of sewer blocks and can even lead to ‘fatbergs’ that build up in rivers, which often include products like sanitary items and facial wipes.
Another thing to consider is that facial wipes aren’t good for your skin. They can often strip your skin of its moisture, while not giving you a deep enough cleanse to remove makeup and impurities. One of the easiest swaps you can make is to ditch your wet wipes for a hot cloth to help cleanse your skin and remove makeup.
Like everything in the beauty industry, the market has evolved to come up with an eco-friendly alternative to wet wipes. Reusable pads – like the Face Halo – only need water to help remove your makeup and can be used in place of up to 500 face wipes. All you have to do is throw them into your washing machine to clean after use to keep them as good as new.
We all know makeup products can be expensive. Most of what your paying for can often be the packaging – which is usually what draws us to a product in the first place.
We all love to splurge on a beautiful compact or a new foundation bottle that would look perfect on our vanity. But once your product is done, what do you do with the compact or bottle? You don’t want to throw it out, but it’ll go to waste.
This is where refills come in.
They’re a cost-effective way of keeping your makeup budget low, as well as reducing your environmental footprint. Instead of paying full price for a whole new product, you can just purchase a refill to insert into your original packaging. That means there’s less plastic going to landfill and you’re saving a pretty penny at the same time.
One of the most innovative brands is La Bouche Rouge, which creates customisable and reliable cases for their products. The brand’s packaging is free of micro-plastic and uses recycled metal and upcycled leather to make products like their Universal Compact. This one compact works to host all their powder-based products, including their highlighter, eyeshadow, and bronzer.
What we love about La Bouche Rouge is their transparency. They’re a brand who aren’t afraid to wear their heart on their selves and they’re fully committed to limiting their environmental impact. It’s their USP that sits at the heart of their brand story. They make high-quality makeup products that are entirely free of harmful micro-plastics. You won’t find any plastic on their ultra-sleek products either.
Their microplastic-free and recyclable makeup products are environmentally responsible with simple alternatives. You’ll find their mascara in glass bottles and brushes that use castor plant fibres, along with no-plastic refillable lipsticks. Their containers are deliberately unbranded. They use silicone moulds that are discarded after use, while their offices operate with a zero plastic policy.
One of the easiest things you can do is to stop and look at the packaging that your products are coming in.
Post-consumer recycled plastic is one that is becoming increasingly popular as an alternative to virgin plastic. Beauty brands like REN Skincare are leading the way by putting existing plastic to good use by using it for their packaging instead of having to bring more plastic into the world. Their Ocean Plastic bottles are made using plastic that is collected from beaches, riverbanks, and oceans. The only way you’ll usually notice post-consumer recycled plastic is from the slight grey tint that the plastic can develop.
Almost every beauty brand is looking for ways to incorporated recycled packaging into their products. Dove has been using 100% recycled plastic bottles since 2019, while Aveda’s product range has seen over 85% of items made using 100% post-consumer plastic.
You also want to consider packaging that is easy to recycle. Brands like Maybelline and The Body Shop are working with recycling companies to create drop-off locations in their stores and at local kiosks to encourage you to recycle your empty beauty products. It makes recycling easier than ever. Brands like MAC Cosmetics even incentivise this through their ‘back to MAC’ programme.
Other types of materials to look out for include aluminium, a popular alternative to plastic that can be recycled and reused an infinite number of times. Glass is another alternative and one usually used by luxury brands like La Bouche Rouge as substitute to plastic.
In an ideal world, we would have more recycling bins than normal garbage cans.
You want to be trying to recycle more than what you send to landfill. One of the best ways to reach this target is to make recycling as easy as possible. One way you can do this is by adding a recycling bin in your bathroom, so you have no excuse not to do the right thing.
You can even use a split bin to help save on space or use two bins if you want to make sure you’re splitting up your recycling and general waste.
What steps are you taking to make your beauty routine more sustainable? We would love to hear about them in the comments below!
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