Packaging doesn’t have to harm the planet.
While our consumption and waste production are at an all-time high, attitudes are finally starting to change and there is the hope of a more circular economy as we emerge into a post-COVID world.
Would it surprise you to learn that the cosmetics industry produces a whopping 120 billion units of packaging each year? It surprised me! That means – combined with fragrance and moisturiser cardboard boxes – a total of 18 million acres of forest is lost per year. We can do better…
So, to help you along your plastic-free journey here are nine progressive, sustainable brands which promote plastic-free packaging or offer reusable or refillable solutions for your personal care needs.
1. The Beauty Kitchen
The Beauty Kitchen creates effective, natural beauty products for people who want to make more sustainable choices. It is most well known for refillable organic vegan and hand sanitiser, which it supplies the Scottish Government with.
All packaging is designed with sustainability in mind. From compostable pouches to using FSC approved cardboard and vegetable inks. There are also recycled containers that can be returned and reused in a one of a kind closed-loop scheme.
The company has many certifications from official organizations to reinforce its sustainable production, including; The Vegan Society, Leaping Bunny (animal cruelty-free), and the Plastic Soup Foundation who fight for clean oceans and promote the banning of microplastics from cosmetics. The Beauty Kitchen was also the first high street beauty brand to become a B Corp in 2017, donating 2% of profits to charity.
2. Lush Cosmetics
Arguably the most well-known progressive high street beauty brand, who champion cruelty free, vegan and plastic free packaging. Its famous ‘Naked’ packaging features products ranging from shampoo bars to foundation ‘slapsticks’ which come in a range of inclusive shades!
If you do buy from the other ranges which include packaging, it is made from recycled plastic and goes straight back into a ‘closed-loop’ recycling system when you return them in-store. The pots are then cleaned and shipped over to the Green Hub where they get melted down and remade into black pots over and over again.
GeOrganics is an organic oral-hygiene product company that avoids the use of synthetic chemicals, relying solely on natural and effective ingredients. All of the products are hand-crafted in small batches and made from ingredients that are as locally sourced as possible. The packaging is specifically designed to be plastic-free, biodegradable, and recyclable to avoid clogging up landfill sites.
One of its best selling products is the beechwood toothbrush – which is made from sustainable Beechwood trees. Another bestseller is the Natural, Mineral-Rich Toothpaste which has natural peppermint oil – which studies have shown to be extremely effective at killing anaerobic bacteria.
4. Beauty Kubes
These handy little kubes are both solid shampoo and body wash for men. There’s a vegan friendly formula, which is sulphate, cruelty, and palm oil-free.
Each box – available as a one-off or repeat subscription – is made from home compostable film derived from the cellulose of wood pulp, and contains 27 small but well-formed solid kubes for men. The kube formula is extra gentle on the body and includes biodegradable cleansing agents that won’t harm the environment either. Perfect for travelling or home use.
5. Rose & Thorne
Rose & Thorne was created to replace short-lived plastic razors, for environmentally friendly and beautifully designed razors which promote cleaner shaving. It donates 10% of profits to ‘Plastic Oceans UK’, to help support the work they do to reduce the amount of plastic that ends up in our oceans.
The Rose & Thorne Double Edge Safety ‘Eco’ Razor has a long length handle and sleek minimal design, making it perfectly balanced and easy to use for the female anatomy and first-time double edge safety razor users. There is also the option to purchase a blade disposal tin – so you can simply recycle the whole tin when it is full, meaning no contact with the blades are ever needed.
EcoVibe is an online hub for people to easily find truly eco-friendly alternatives. All the products are truly eco-friendly, ethically produced, and sustainable. Additionally, all information given about those products is clear and trustworthy. A big plus with EcoVibe’s online shop is that all packaging is completely plastic-free. There is a great feature on the website where you can navigate through products and filter them by your highest Eco Concern.
Alongside a collection of products from other companies they have their own products too like these vegan reusable makeup remover pads which are a great replacement for disposable cotton pads or face wipes. They’re made from bamboo and organic cotton, both of which are biodegradable.
They also come with a 500ml glass jar for clean storage in the bathroom and a cotton bag for machine washing. All packaging is recyclable too.
7. Wild Deodorant
With a mission is to shake up the throwaway culture of everyday bathroom products, Wild have really shaken up the deodorant game. Its reusable deodorant applicator is made from durable aluminum, to ensure it stands the test of time and the deodorant refills are completely compostable.
Wild’s natural deodorant is completely compostable, making it the world’s first zero-plastic deodorant refill. The deodorant itself is also good for you, not just the environment. It’s vegan-friendly, cruelty-free, dermatologically tested and free from artificial fragrance, parabens, aluminum, and sulfates.
BeYou is a female wellness company focused on natural menstruation products. It also promotes female empowerment and body positivity. It boasts some great products for easing period pains such as CBD oils and balms, made from all-natural ingredients. They come in little glass jars which can be recycled or kept as pots for small plants!
It also offers a menstrual cup, rival to other menstrual cups. BeYou’s cup is BPA, latex, and dye free. There’s also a website calculator which estimates how much waste and money you could save on period products if you switch to a menstrual cup. It’s well worth a look!
Boobalou is an online shop designed to offer everyday reusable replacements to disposable household products. Its offerings include eco home and living, and eco baby products.
Boobalou sell the award-winning miosolo, reusable nappies designed by Bambino Mio which are supposed to be as easy to use as disposable nappies. They come in one size and are designed to grow with a baby from birth to potty training and come in a range of ‘funky’ prints. See more information about their absorbance and washing guides.