Written by Ellie Peach
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With Earth Day coming up on the 22nd of April, what better time to start making your skincare routine as sustainable as possible? This could be by looking closer at the packaging of your products, what ingredients are being used and whether said products impact the environment after you have finished using them.
When shopping, the easiest way to check if a potential new product is conscious of its impact is to look for recyclable logos, indicating the packaging and bottle within can be recycled. Similarly, looking for a vegan and cruelty-free logo to ensure the product’s ethics. Below, we have compiled a list full of different vegan beauty products you need to not only change your skincare and makeup routine but help the planet too.
Conscious face creams
UpCircle is a great brand that really looks after the customer and the planet. The website is also excellent because they have an optional skincare questionnaire that helps you find the best products for you. We all know how overwhelming it can get looking for a product among the many similar options available, so this questionnaire is great for narrowing this search.
Upcircle’s products are also vegan, cruelty-free, and palm oil-free, and their packaging is almost entirely made from glass
The caps and lids are made from aluminium, and both components can be recycled. There is also an option to return your used jars to UpCircle and receive a 20% discount for your refill! The brand strives to be environmentally friendly, is plastic negative and aims for circularity throughout its production, making them a great sustainable brand to support.
Sustainable body cream
Biossance uses plant-based squalane as the base of all of their skincare products. Traditionally squalane has been harvested from shark livers; however, Biossance saw room to eradicate this cruel act. They have naturally produced this moisture-locking ingredient using sugarcane, saving thousands of sharks from slaughter each year! The lab-made squalane is perfect for skincare products as it balances oils, improves elasticity and locks in moisture to protect your skin.
The packaging of these products is also made from sugarcane and is forest stewardship council certified; they can be composted or recycled. To make it even more desirable, it is vegan, cruelty-free, wholly non-toxic and non-fragranced, making it excellent for sensitive skin.
Eco cleansers and serums
Wildsmith Skin uses a range of homegrown natural ingredients in their products, including cucumber, calendula, verbena and rose. They have an excellent line of cleansers and serums for various skin types or concerns, backed by scientific research and nature.
The packaging is revolutionary as well; created from a mixture of mycelium (root system of mushrooms) and agricultural waste, it can be fully composted within 90 days. The process involves combining the two ingredients where mycelium acts as a natural binder, it is left for a few days to grow, and the packaging mould is formed! This is such effective packaging as it is quick to produce, removes waste instead of creating it, and is durable enough to protect fragile products. What’s more the products from Wildsmith Skin come in glass or aluminium casing, both perfect materials for recycling at home. If you are looking for a brand closing the sustainable loop on their products, Wildsmith Skin is a brand to look at.
The vegan and cruelty-free brand, Ren, makes many natural skincare products for the conscious eco and ethically minded individual. They work hard to make a difference with various packaging types, including aluminium tubes that can be infinitely recycled and tubes made from plastic collected from our oceans. One of my favourite products from Ren is their sunscreen. Chemical UV filter, and silicone-free, this mineral sun cream is fantastic for protecting your skin while also leaving the planet untouched. The product does not contain any microplastics and therefore won’t contribute to ocean pollution.
Vegan foundations and concealer
Vegan makeup can feel like a big jump if you’re used to the convenience of drug store makeup; however, it doesn’t have to be such a leap of faith. First, choose a few items to replace and see how you feel. There’s no need to overwhelm yourself. Remember doing something small is far better than doing nothing.
Zao is a vegan and cruelty-free makeup brand that produces an extensive range of products, including foundation, concealer, blush, mascara, nail varnish, and more. They are truly leading the way in terms of eco-friendly makeup. What is most eye-catching about the products is the outer packaging made from bamboo instead of the standard plastic tubing. Bamboo is a really great material to use due to its restorative quality and the fact it can be composted. The products also come in cotton bags instead of cardboard packaging which can be used repeatedly instead of instantly being thrown away.
Sustainable shampoo and conditioner
If you want to change to an eco-friendly shampoo and conditioner, the best option would be to switch from bottles to bars. These bars are great as they leave minimal waste as the entire product can be used. Zero Waste Path have a broad collection of exciting scents and natural ingredients for each hair type. It is also safe for colour treated hair!
Zero Waste Path sells candles, deodorants, balms, and lotions, among their shampoo and conditioner bars. The brand also offers a return scheme to receive discounts on future orders and ensure the empty product packaging can be reused.
Wild is an innovative deodorant and soap brand that uses natural ingredients to make toxin-free products, putting the environment at the heart of everything they do. The deodorant casing you receive when you buy the starter kit, for instance, can be used for life but is fully recyclable, being made from aluminium. The deodorant pods themselves come in 7 different wonderfully imaginative scents and are delivered to you as frequently as you choose. The pods are made from bamboo pulp and can be recycled or composted. As an added bonus, the company is also carbon negative and maintains a forest, having planted over 50,000 trees thus far.
What’s stopping you?
This month, your journey to shopping with conscious thought to the planet and the people who live on it can begin with these effortless skincare and makeup routine swaps. You don’t have to get up one day and turn your whole life around. Just make changes as you see fit.
The trial and error process of finding the brands you enjoy is what can make your sustainable journey that much more fun. Experiment with an array of products until you find the eco-friendly and ethical products that are perfect for you.
Top tip: Eco-conscious makeup can sometimes be rare to see when out shopping. I would recommend looking online for these brands or following their socials to keep updated about pop up shops or markets the brands may be involved in.