As a frequent beauty user, I follow an everyday skincare regime in which I regularly use a moisturizer, an under eye cream, sunscreen and serums. While I do like to pamper my skin, skincare empties always leave me disheartened.
How harmful are skincare empties ?
It is a no brainer that 70% of the waste generated from the beauty industry comes from its packaging. To manufacture just one moisturizer, there is cellophane paper, a bottle or jar in which the product is put and to close the bottle there is a pump, a nozzle or a lid.
While I am buying only one jar, there are 120 billion units of packaging manufactured every year on an average. ( As per reports published by Zero waste week)
It’s a given that the community of beauty enthusiasts is so large and the waste is in no way going to reduce. While we cannot stop using creams, we also cannot continue disturbing the environment. To come to a middle ground, beauty brands have etched buzzwords such as “Green Beauty” subconsciously through their marketing, driving us to build a framework around which we can at least start thinking about the environment while also staying pretty.
For those of you who are new to the concept of sustainability. Green Beauty means to source, produce and package products in a way that is ethical and sustainable to the environment.
While there are a zillion ways to follow a more sustainable beauty routine, we should only stick to a regime which is easy to follow and does not require much of an effort.
What does it mean to be sustainably pretty?
Here are a few tips to if you are looking to be sustainably pretty :
Keep it simple, use multipurpose products !
- If you are buying a highlighter, buy it with the purpose of using it as an eyeshadow too.
- While a blush is used mainly on the cheeks, you could also use it as an eyeshadow if you are in for a soft glam look.
- An eyebrow pencil can in every way be used as an eyeliner.
Not only are you saving the environment but you are saving money too.
Recycle and reuse !
- Beauty items such as face wipes, sheet masks, blotting sheets and wet wipes are major contributors of waste which can only be used once and cannot be recycled.
- Instead of using beauty products which can only be used once, go for reusable cotton pads and a cleansing balm to remove your make up.
- Swap plastic products with biodegradable recyclable items. Choose a steel razor instead of a plastic one. Buy make up packaged in biodegradable material such as bamboo, aluminium and glass.
- Did you know that mascara wands can actually also be reused as an eyebrow comb, once the mascara liquid is over ?
- Once your skincare or make up is over, go through the bottles and jars to see what items you could keep to reuse instead of throwing away all the bottles.
Be aware of Brand Sustainability Initiatives
- With buzzwords like “Green & Clean beauty” doing the rounds, make it a point to read about different sustainability initiatives offered by beauty brands so that you too in some way could benefit and at the same time do your bit.
- If you frequently use make up, you should know about the “Back 2 MAC” initiative where you can return six product empties from MAC, and get a lipstick free in return.
- Body Shop is known to be a vegan brand with all its beauty products being 100% recyclable. In fact once you have finished using their products, you can give back the empties at their store in return for which you will get points.
- While this does not apply in India, Sephora has an auto replenish refill policy abroad, where you can take an empty bottle of perfume and get a refill at a discount. All you need to do is to sign up for the auto replenish feature in the subscription delivery program.
- Asa Beauty is one of the brands in India, which has a refill policy available to all its consumers.
- Brands right from Sephora to Colorbar have started to replace plastic in their packaging for biodegradable materials which can be recycled.
Always remember that less is definitely more when it comes to be sustainably pretty. Only buy what you know you can finish. Having a huge clutter of make up leads to unnecessary waste.
If you enjoyed reading this article on sustainability, do have a look at the article, “Toast to Good Health & Happiness”.