The beauty industry is infamous for creating masses of plastic waste. Most of this is generated via packaging and shipment of products. For example, many beauty products can’t be recycled after finishing them, and who hasn’t received their new foundation wrapped in copious amounts of plastic wrap, bubble wrap and more?
Thankfully, the industry is changing. Brands are emerging that are leading the way with recyclable packaging, or in some cases, no packaging at all. Refillable products are become more accessible, and many are opting to avoid plastic packaging in favour of more recycling-friendly materials like cardboard and aluminium.
Below are some of our favourite beauty brands making a real difference in the industry.
New Zealand born beauty label Emma Lewisham is on a mission to make beauty circular. Every product in the Emma Lewisham range is refillable, and they welcome back all packaging to reuse or recycle it within the business. In this way, they’re helping to keep beauty waste out of landfill. Oh, and the 100% natural products are likely to find a very special place on your shelf - they feel great, look great, and actually work.
A skincare brand with an ethos of making your routine simple and efficacious, Foile is also in the business of refillables, with their beautiful bottles designed to be reused again and again. Their Bondi flagship store is a must-visit for the interiors alone, or if you’re out of state, just order a recyclable pouch of your favourite formulas, and you’re set.
A business built on solid bars that mean plastic can be completely eliminated from their packaging, Ethique house all their products in cardboard. Yep, even the lip balms, after the brand realised we throw almost 200 million plastic-packaged ones in the bin every year. Instead, theirs operate like Push Pops (remember those?) and trust us when we say they’re a delight to use.
Flavedo & Albedo are 100% anti-plastic waste. Instead of using plastic to house their products, they opted for sustainable timber, glass and aluminium, and work with suppliers to even eliminate plastic waste from their supply chain. The lip tints are a favourite (and last forever) or for the more adventurous makeup-wearer, try the highly pigmented eyeliner pencils for graphic eye looks.
Words by Melissa Mason.
Melissa is a freelance writer and podcast host. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram.