By Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi
With so many beauty products on the market, it’s sometimes hard to make a decision. But for me, if all brands are equally cruelty free, non-toxic, well pigmented and of high quality, when there’s a choice to be made, beauty brands with zero waste packaging will help tip the scale.
If you’re not sure what constitutes ‘zero waste packaging’, it could be a variety of things. For example, the product could:
- be refillable
- be recyclable
- come in compostable, biodegradable packaging
- use no outside packaging
…or better yet, combine a few of those qualities!
If you’d like to start shopping for clean beauty brands with zero waste packaging, take a look at some of what I’ve tried and tested, below.
Vegan and fully organic, Zao is a brand you can trust! They offer a refill system that allows users to purchase cosmetics that you just pop into the original tube, compact or jar, which is great. And did I mention that Zao’s packaging is made out of sustainably harvested bamboo, making it both stylish and durable?
Sustainable because…sustainably grown bamboo and refillable products.
Clean has released a scent that revolutionises the way you experience fragrances, since all of them are based solely on natural ingredients. For example, one of my favourites, Blonde Rose, contains the aromas of rose, jasmin and peonies – but there are plenty of other varieties to choose from, including woodsy, green and citrus scents. Of course, no matter what your preference, the perfumes come in a recyclable glass bottle with an oak cap from certified sustainably managed forests in Spain.
Sustainable because…sustainably grown wood and recyclable glass bottles
3. Kjaer Weis
This brand was founded by the Danish Kirsten Kjaer Weis to ensure that her line of beauty products would align with luxury beauty, using Certified Natural or Certified Organic ingredients. Her concern for sustainability extends also to the intelligent packaging she provides. The brand even helps you refill the KW products, giving instructions in three simple steps: open up the compact, and turn it upside-down, use a pin where there is a small hole below the label to dislodge the makeup cartridge, this allows to insert the new compact, whilst the refill carton can be recycled.
Sustainable because…refillable compacts and recyclable packaging.
This high performing make-up uses certified organic ingredients and bamboo for the packaging of its brushes. The most sought make-up artists of glamour have used Antonym makeup on the red carpet, for the likes of Robin Wright, Kate Mara, Keira Knightely, Elizabeth Banks and Felicity Jones.
Sustainable because…responsibly sourced bamboo comprises the majority of their packaging.
This vegan brand boasts clean beauty products including hair dyes, eye shadows, mascaras, blushers, foundations and even eco-friendly glitter that prioritise environmental sustainability. For example, when it comes to packaging, the cardboard containers that protect your makeup (and which list the ingredients) are made from 100% recycled paper, and their ‘build your own’ refillable palettes ensure you only buy the make-up shades you want, whilst minimising waste in both packaging and product.
Sustainable because…packaging is made from recycled materials, plus compacts are all refillable.
Aveda was the first ever beauty company to use post-consumer recycled PET in their packaging, and today, over 85% of their skincare and hair styling bottles and jars contain 100% recycled materials. The brand is also working to expand recycling initiatives and back in 2008, Aveda pioneered the first ever rigid plastic caps recycling program in the United States to raise awareness to the alarming amounts of plastics polluting our planet. This program inspired vast numbers of people to collect caps, and prevented approximately 145 million of these tiny hazards from entering our waterways, oceans and landfills. The brand is now experimenting with combining recycled plastic with plant-derived ones to make their tubes even more sustainable.
Sustainable because…recycled plastic comprises the majority of their packaging.
Aussie brand The Organic Skin Co makes gorgeously pigmented makeup that’s sold in refillable containers partly comprised of bamboo. You can customise a palette of mineral eye shadows, blushers and foundations, ensuring you only select the products you’ll actually use, and then when the makeup runs out, just order refills of what you need. That’s not the most ecological aspect of their packing though; this is: for every single one of their products you buy, the company will plant a tree.
Sustainable because…of their cool ‘buy only the stuff you need’ system. Plus, a tree is planted to offset the impact of each purchase!
The guys behind Danish brand grums are super eco-minded. All of their clean beauty products use only totally natural materials, such as coffee grounds reclaimed from cafes and other commercial enterprises.
All of their products are produced locally and they only use plant based packaging – namely, a special kind of green ‘plastic’ made from sugar cane. Furthermore, the brand has its very own recycling program that allows customers to return an empty grums’ product to a grums’ retailer – and then you get a sweet 10% discount on a new grums’ product!
Sustainable because…of the innovative sugar ‘plastic’ packaging, plus their recycling system.
This is a clean cosmetics brand that ensures everything they produce is sustainable, thanks to their pioneering ‘Return. Refill. Repeat.’ program; a scheme based on ‘cradle-to-cradle’ principles to take sustainability on the high street one step further at no extra cost to the consumer.
How does it work? In a nutshell – you return your empty Beauty Kitchen containers to the brand, and they will wash, refill and return them to you. They’ll even pay for the postage and you can earn up to 50% off your next order. Just look out for the ‘RETURN. REFILL. REPEAT’ stamp on your packaging.
Sustainable because…Well, just look above!
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