By Alexandra Mae
I can already hear you saying, ‘oh man not another swap!’ As devoutly conscious as we all are, the constant eco-anxiety can become crippling, and the effort tedious. ‘I’m already eating an abundance of plants, taking the bus to work, using a mooncup and turning off the tap when I brush my teeth (with my bamboo toothbrush!) – what an earth else can I possibly manage?” Sound familiar?
Swaps and alternatives are much simpler and much chicer than you thought, it just takes a bit of insider knowledge. The most obvious brand that comes to mind is Lush Cosmetics, who have been championing fresh and natural hand-made beauty products since 1995. Lush are ditching as much packaging as possible for the following reasons.
They express that most bottled products contain a lot of water, and not a lot of the good stuff. A solid product contains just the good stuff and nothing else. Water also means preservatives are needed – and who wants those? Because the company want to use FairTrade, natural and organic ingredients that cost more, they like to save on expensive and un-necessary packaging. This also helps them fund extensive training for staff. My personal favourites? The Scrubee body bar and the Sleepy Face cleansing bar.
Another hot brand on the scene is Ethique, the world’s first zero waste beauty line. The brand’s founder Brianne West has a background in biochemistry and grew up in New Zealand, where she developed a deep love and respect for nature and the environment. As well as creating beautifully made vegan, cruelty free and palm oil free skin and haircare bars; Ethique also donates a huge 20% of its profits to environmental charities.
But there is something for everyone – if you aren’t a fan of solid products, shampoo, conditioner and shower gel can easily be refilled from local health food stores. Faith in Nature (which you can find in your local Holland and Barrett) has a list of refill stations on their website.
Keep a look out for glass and biodegradable packaging too – check out the wonders of Neal’s Yard and Bybi’s gorgeous compressed strawberry seed oil. Bybi even posts recycling/composting instructions for each individual product on their website.
You can even make your own beauty treats. Influencers, chefs and restaurants such as Farmacy Kitchen are now including home-made beauty sections in their cook-books. All you need is a pot of coconut oil, banana, avocado and a few essential oils!
But whatever your effort, just remember it doesn’t have to be an all at once move, baby steps are fine and just find out what you like. And here’s to a zero-waste future!