With the rise of environmental awareness in the form of metal straws and numerous campaigns highlighting the amount of waste thrown into the ocean, creating a sustainable lifestyle seems like an obvious, no-brainer choice.
We need to start treating our planet better, and while this should be carried out on a global scale, every little bit we can do also helps!While it’s easy enough to carry around a metal straw, we also need to look at the things we use on a daily basis – from the things we eat, what we wear, as well as the products we use on our face and body.
Sustainability has become a trending topic among the beauty community, with more people increasingly demanding that brands be accountable and adopt sustainability in their business practices and their ingredients, but what does it mean, and how can we adopt that philosophy into our routine as well?
Despite the progress that has been made within the community, such as Lush’s first ‘naked’ store in Manchester, the United Kingdom, where everything sold in the store is packaging-free, the industry itself isn’t exactly known for being eco-friendly. Think about the amount of one-time use sheet masks and the numerous plastic bottles on your counter.
However, there have been measures taken to reduce the amount of waste, along with consumers continuing to demand for products that are ethically sourced and sustainably-packaged.
While there’s no perfect brand or product, there are a couple of ways to gauge how a brand might have taken efforts to be ethical or sustainable!
Check your ingredients
Some of the big key words to look for if you’re wondering whether a product uses sustainable ingredients is if it’s vegan, cruelty-free, organic and palm oil free.
That last one is a rather significant factor in determining whether the product has been ethically produced, mainly because the production of palm oil is extremely harmful to the environment, contributing to 8% of the world’s deforestation between 1990 to 2008.
Is the brand using ingredients that benefit local producers and harvesters? Does it pay suppliers a fair wage?
These are some questions that can help you determine if the skincare brands you use are actively utilising ethically-sourced ingredients.
Less packaging is more
What happens once you’ve run out of your bottle of toner? Where does it go once you’ve thrown it into the bin? The idea behind sustainable packaging links back to the whole life cycle of the packaging itself — what it’s made of to what happens once we throw it out.The materials used for the packaging should be recyclable, or made of recycled materials. In fact, go for brands that use glass instead of plastic packaging as well, and products that are stored in simple containers without additional fancy packaging. They might look pretty, but unless they can be recycled, they’re just an extra weight to the amount of waste that gets dumped into the ocean anyway.
Drop that makeup remover
Single-use makeup removers are incredibly convenient, especially when you’re too tired (or too lazy, we’ve all been there before) to drag yourself to the bathroom; the best of them are also capable of removing the most matte foundation and liquid lipsticks! But, the unfortunate truth about makeup removers is that they reportedly take up to 100 years to break down in landfill.
Perhaps it’s time to switch to balm, oil or gel cleansers — they’re gentler and plus, you’ll be reducing the waste by a significant amount.
A step by step process
It will take time to go fully sustainable, so don’t fret if you feel like you’re not doing enough! What truly matters is that you continue to push forward with your journey in adopting a sustainable, eco-friendly lifestyle. There are plenty of vegan and eco-friendly brands out there, and as awareness kicks up in the industry, hopefully your favourite beauty and skincare brands will pick up on the trend as well.
What do you think?
What are some brands you know that practice sustainable beauty? Let us know! We’d love to know your thoughts, so leave us a comment below or reach us via any of Neue’s social media platforms – Facebook or Instagram.