We all know that single-use plastic is a huge problem. And the beauty industry is perhaps one of the most guilty parties when it comes to its usage, thanks to packaging, packaging, and, er, more packaging. You may not think you can make a difference as an individual, but by committing to certain steps such as using eco-friendly products and plastic alternatives (even if for one day), you can do your bit. And the 15 totally plastic-free beauty products listed below are a great place to start.
June 17 is 'Plastic-Free Beauty Day,' which was founded by Yolanda Cooper, CEO of sustainable brand We Are Paradoxx. The day acts as a reminder to us all to monitor our consumption of single-use plastic in our products. For the second year in a row, the campaign is asking supporters to go totally plastic-free for the entirety of the day. It is also encouraging you to share your favourite repurposed packaging idea on Instagram and use the hashtag #plasticfreebeautyday to spread the message and promote sustainability.
Be aware of our plastic usage is important now more than ever, says Cooper. "Plastic waste has been deemed a ‘planetary crisis’ by the UN, who stated that if the rate of waste production continues, by 2050 our oceans will carry more plastic than fish."
Cooper continues: "The beauty industry creates 120 billion units of packaging every year and packaging is the biggest contributor to plastic waste pollution."
So how can you help personally? While recycling wherever possible is crucial, it's not always enough.
"Many brands are making changes towards recycled and bio-plastics but the reality is that plastic production is moving at a spectacular rate (half of all plastic ever produced was made in the last 15 years), and so if we don’t actively move away from plastic where there is a viable alternative, it will be too late to save the environment from irreparable damage."
Therefore, "making a conscious effort to support plastic-free beauty brands is a simple way to reduce single-use plastic waste," says Cooper.
If you can't commit to totally plastic-free products, "look for reusable packaging with eco-refill options and support local businesses where you can shop without the need for all the additional packaging that comes with online shopping," she says.
To get you started, here are my top 15 plastic-free products: