Lets Face The Truth: The 3-Step Guide To Sustainable Beauty For Beginners

The cosmetic industry in the UK is estimated to be worth £27 million as of 2020, whilst globally the industry produces 120 billion units of plastic per year. So, the truth is, what many would consider being a harmless industry may in fact be far more damaging than we once thought. For many, buying sustainably can seem like a bit of a midfield, as we are constantly being bombarded by-products which are regarded as being ‘green.’ It can sometimes just get a bit too confusing! This guide should give you a good place to start with the world of sustainable beauty, and remember small changes to the way we consume can have a greater global impact- more than you would imagine!

1. Watch out for the greenwashers. – greenwashing is a term used within the field of sustainability and involves corporations who can mislead the consumer into thinking their product or brand is environmentally friendly, when in actuality this is far from the truth. A good way to avoid this is by researching your favorite beauty brands by looking at their ESG reports to have a look at the evidence on what they are doing to promote the good environmental practice, within their brand. This will provide you with the information to make informed choices on where you’re buying your beauty products.

2. Re-use and rediscover- from cosmetic applicators to pumps, plastic is used in most of our favorite beauty products, and annoyingly these components of packaging cannot be recycled. Although recently there has been the rise of reusable beauty products, in which brands provide refillable packaging, meaning you can refill the product again and again. This is often at a discounted price too. Re-usable packaging is becoming more commonplace, as brands like Fenty, Lush, Charlotte Tilbury, and Quai, just to name a few, have all got on board with going green.

3. Ditching the make-up wipes- you’ve probably heard by now that make-up wipes aren’t the best for your skin, but they are actually even worse for the environment. A report by the Marine Conservation Society has shown that the number of wet wipes washed up on British beaches has increased by 50% since 2013. This is a sad reality, but cutting them out can help significantly. Plus, there are so many great alternatives. For example, a microfiber reusable face cloth, these are a hassle-free way of removing make-up with ease - so there are no excuses for sleeping with your make-up on. They’re just as convenient as a make-up wipe and are way more cost-effective- what more could you want!

Remember, no one is asking for perfection here, and it may take some time for these sustainable practices to become an everyday habit in which you incorporate into your beauty routine. It’s just trial and error. But hopefully, this guide gives you a good place to start!


Celia Aspden