10 Tips to Make Your Beauty Routine More Sustainable
Easy changes for a more eco-friendly lifestyle
As sustainability is a big part of who we are as a company, we thought it would be appropriate to share the ways in which we can all be a bit more mindful of our daily impact on the planet as it pertains to our beauty rituals. These suggestions are meant to be taken into consideration as part of a more complete awareness of how our daily lives affect climate change and pollution, where we want to help people make small changes that can have a significant effect if taken to scale. Strength in numbers! Take one, or all, of these tips and make them your own. Don’t feel guilty about what you can’t yet do, as long as you’re making changes, you’re moving in the right direction. 🙂
Jumping right into it, here below are 10 tips on how the average person can be more responsible in their approach to their skincare and beauty.
1. Use less products (more products doesn’t mean better skin). I know it can be tempting to want to try new products, new brands on a regular basis, but the reality is that many of us end up buying products that we don’t fully consume. And while I respect the time and dedication that some people devote to their skin, I don’t believe that a 10+ step routine is necessary for our skin on a nightly basis. Our skin is generally fairly resilient and doesn’t require a whole bathroom cabinet full of products. Using less, more multi-purpose, multi-correctional products (like ours! 😊) will not only benefit your wallet, but also benefit the environment by not contributing as much waste to the system.
2. Avoid products with unnecessary packaging. We’ve all seen terrible packaging. Whether it is a banana on a styrofoam plate wrapped in cellophane, or a beauty product in that hard, impossible-to-open-without-a-boxcutter plastic, we can have an impact with how we decide to use our hard-earned money. By simply not buying those kinds of products you are sending a message (especially if you tell the store or company why you made the choice that you did). Support those companies that make the effort to use as little packaging as possible in order to contribute less waste.
3. Buy local, if possible. If you have natural beauty stores in your area, make a point of physically going to the store to buy your products. By not ordering something online you are forgoing the emissions that it takes to ship the product, while also not requiring additional shipping materials to be used.
4. Don’t leave the water running. This is a quick and easy one. While washing your face or brushing your teeth, try not to leave the faucet on. Fresh water is a precious resource which is becoming less and less easy to source, store, and clean. This could also translate to not turning on the dishwasher or laundry machine when they’re only half-full, or taking shorter showers.
5. Buy products that don’t have ingredients that put a strain on water treatment plants. There are a number of synthetic ingredients that end up in our water from rinse-off products like cleansers, makeup, and masks and create problems from simple pollution to making their way onto our food, as sewage sludge from wastewater is sometimes used as fertilizer (gross, I know). Types of ingredients that cause issues are synthetic musks, perfluoroalkyls compounds, some organic UV-filters and microplastics. All this to say that avoiding synthetic ingredients when possible is usually a good idea, environmentally speaking 😊.
6. Avoid any and all products that contain Microplastics. Diving deeper on tip #5, microplastics in the cosmetic industry are sometimes described as microbeads and sometimes simply listed as its chemical composition such as polyethylene, polylactic acid (PLA), polypropylene, polystyrene, or polyethylene terephthalate. Most often used as bulking agents or abrasives, they’re usually found in toothpaste, body washes, sunscreens, and many makeup products. The European Chemicals Agency estimates that up to 36,000 tons of microplastics end up in their waterways every year. This affects our drinking water as well as the lives of our marine animals that are dying due to microplastic pollution.
7. Maybe take a break from makeup? Similar to tip #1, using makeup less frequently will benefit both your wallet, your skin, and the environment. Personally I rarely wear makeup, but I have friends and family members where they don't go a day without makeup. Particularly if you’re using conventional makeup products, they often times contain ingredients that are not good for the environment (tip #6 above) and, quite honestly, the natural or “nude” look is perfectly beautiful as well!
8. Use washable facial cloths instead of cotton. Cotton pads are unfortunately single-use products meaning that for all the work that goes into making a single one (think of the picking, processing, packaging, shipping, etc), their utility ends up being very short-lived. Using a gentle facial cloth that you can throw in the laundry is a much better option as the life of that cloth will go much further.
9. Recycle your used products with stores that participate in programs like Terracycle. Terracycle is a social organization that works with brands and retailers in order to reduce waste as much as possible. They recently launched an e-commerce program called Loop where you can receive products from their participating partners in durable, reusable containers that you return when finished for cleaning and refill. They also work with stores like Credo which gives you points to their loyalty program every time you bring empty bottles to their store for recycling.
10. Store your products appropriately. With proper storage, your beauty products will not only last longer, but also stay more effective for longer! Everything degrades, even conventional products loaded with preservatives, so where and how you store them can save you from having to potentially throw a product away early if it’s gone bad. Ideal storage is in a cool, dark place so the fridge can be a good option or a closet that isn’t in the bathroom is also a good option. Unfortunately the bathroom (with the humidity from showering and the frequent exposure to light, isn’t the best place for our favorite products…)
And there you go! If you have any other suggestions, please let me know in the comments below!