Hail Eco Princess! Since everyone is going green (Sorry Pantone and Classic Blue), let’s talk about natural, sustainable beauty and everything eco-friendly. Remember, small, even seemingly paltry, changes to your beauty routine can have a HUGE impact on the environment and our planet. A recent Nielsen study reported that 22 percent of Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (like food and toiletries) sold in 2018 had some sustainable attributes, slated to climb to 25 percent by 2021. And it's you, dear Millennials, who are driving this change, the vast majority saying they are willing to pay more for sustainable, makeup & cosmetic products. High time, we say, considering there are 25 trillion pieces of plastic debris floating in the ocean. All those tubes, jars and packets that we discard so mindlessly every day. Let’s start by saying shopping consciously, with sustainability in mind, doesn't mean making major sacrifices to your beauty routine.
Here, we’ll show you how to practice sustainable beauty routine a sustainable makeover.
Top Sustainable Beauty Routine Practices
1. Recycle, Recycle…
A growing number of companies are taking the 3 Rs to heart; reduce, reuse and recycle, with programs that champion recycling while also rewarding customers. Some of the top ones that come to mind: L’Occitane that asks you to bring back any full-sized empty from any brand and receive 10 percent off your next purchase, and Lush that takes back five of the brand’s classic black pots and gives you a complimentary Fresh Face Mask. Then there is M.A.C Back-to-M.A.C initiative that rewards customers who return six empties for recycling with a free lipstick. Meanwhile, Kiehl’s encourages you to bring back their empty skincare full-size bottle and receive a stamp. For every 10 stamps, you’ll receive a free travel-sized product. How genius is that? Others like Dove, Pantene and The Body Shop also have return and recycle programs, and as an eco-conscious beauty buff, these are the brands to shop from. Here are our faves from these green champions: L'Occitane Almond Shower Oil, Kiehl's Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution, M.A.C Retro Matte Lipstick - Ruby Woo and The Body Shop Vitamin C Glow Boosting Moisturiser.
2. ECO-FRIENDLY MAKEUP REMOVERS
Regular makeup wipes are handy for sure, but these polyester-fused wipes damage the environment. Millions of these wet wipes are flushed down toilets daily and cause blockages in the sewage system. And we’re not even talking about the fact that they don’t degrade fast enough. Say hello to new age green makeup removers made from microfiber cloth like Makeup Eraser Glove 2 Pack - Makeup Brush Cleaner that’s gentle on skin and removes the toughest, water-proof makeup in seconds. Plus, its washable and can be reused 100 times. Then there’s Makeup Eraser Original Pink - Makeup Remover made from an ultra-soft, 100% woven polyester-blend cloth that removes all makeup without leaving any residue Still unsure whether they’ll do the job? Switch to organic cotton pads that are better for the environment. When it comes to cotton swabs, look for ones made from bamboo rather than plastic like Mamaearth India's First Organic Bamboo Based Baby Wipes - 72 Wipes.
4. Don’t Brush It Off
Did you know that every year, 3.6 billion plastic toothbrushes are thrown away worldwide, ending up in landfill or the sea? No wonder that the sale of bamboo toothbrushes has skyrocketed; not only are the handles 100 percent biodegradable, but bamboo is antimicrobial and water-resistant, making it harder for bacteria to linger. So, bye-bye throat infections! Here’s one you can try: Rejuvenating UBTAN Bamboo Toothbrush – Yellow. The handle is made with wild, giant MOSO Bamboo, that’s 100 percent biodegradable and the nylon bristles are BPA-free.
5. Don’t buy Minis
Instead invest in a good set of travel sized containers like NewU Travel Kit Set Of 5 Bottles, made from BPA-free, high quality, reusable, clear plastic you can use over and over. The less you buy, the less you need to dispose of, and we all know how quickly minis run out.
6. Eco Conscious Packaging
Many brands are now doing their best to adopt a clean-green eco-friendly cosmetic packaging approach, using bamboo, paper, hemp and cloth. The Nykaa Soap Story Handcrafted Bathing Bar is not just Cruelty-free and free of Parabens, Sulphates and Mineral Oils, its outer packaging is also reusable and degradable. Meanwhile haircare brand Aveda is repurposing post-consumer recycled materials such as milk jugs and soda bottles to produce 100 per cent recycled haircare and skincare bottles. Even better, these are manufactured with renewable wind energy to minimise the brand’s carbon footprint. Another brand to check out is Seed Phytonutrients, a skin and hair care brand funded by L’Oreal. The brand’s shower-safe paper bottles are made from a fibrous pulp of recycled materials and lined with a thin plastic bottle created from food grade recycled plastic.
7. Try A Bar Instead
When we were growing up, we used shampoo bars for our Sunday hair wash. Yes, that’s a thing. With the plastic crisis already out of hand, it’s foolish to think just a few more plastic shampoo bottles won’t harm anyone. Did you know more than 552 million shampoo bottles end up in landfills every year? Quick fix, switch to a shampoo bar today. And while you’re at it, ditch the shower gel and go back to using a pampering, sudsy bar soap for the rest of you. You’ll be saving landfills from tons of plastic and it’s a great way to start your sustainable beauty journey. Here are my faves: Trycone Keratin Shampoo And Conditioner Bar With Argan Oil, Soulflower Reetha, Coconut Milk Shampoo Bar Soap and Cetaphil Cleansing & Moisturising Syndet Bar.
9. Opt For Glass Bottles
Choosing skincare products in glass packaging is an easy step towards making the planet greener. Sure, some plastics can be recycled, but there’s only so many times they can be reused before they reach the end of their life cycle and enter the eco system. Fancy plastic in your drinking water? Meanwhile, glass can be recycled countless times and unlike plastic, leaves behind no chemical contaminants or synthetic residue. Luckily, many brands today use glass packaging, such as Nykaa Natural Essential Oils and several skin care products like L'Oreal Paris White Perfect Clinical Day Cream SPF19 PA+++ and Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel.