Sustainable beauty has always been a huge movement, however it is gaining more prominence than ever before. The thing with living a more sustainable life though is that it isn’t always about being cautious about the ingredients that are in your beauty and health products – it’s also about the packaging too.
If you haven’t started making changes yet, you might find yourself slowly falling behind as the world starts to move into living more eco-friendly. There’s no time like now to revisit your beauty and care routine, and implement little changes that give it a sustainable, environment-friendly edge.
Here are some ideas to kick-start you:
1. Ditch plastic and use recyclable glass
Shamefully for me, it’s only been within the last year that I’ve noticed just how many plastic bottles litter my bathroom. Shower gels, shampoos, conditioners, face washes and exfoliators, all lined up on the shelves in plastic bottles. EURGH! This is so so bad for our environment – unless you find brands which use the biodegradable Ocean Waste Plastic – and we really should look at bringing in glass more often.
I’ve found that there are a number of retailers out there (lots of small businesses too which is good!) who stock glass bottles perfect for keeping your shampoos, body washes etc stored in. You can keep topping these up so that you only use glass containers, which is a great start to slowly ridding yourself of a ‘plastic bathroom’.
Remember too that when in the habit of using the same shampoo, conditioner, moisturiser, or body wash over and over again, it makes senses to invest in a larger quantities of the product rather than contribute to plastic waste with many small bottles. So go jumbo if you can! Even better, bulk buying is often cheaper and more pocket-friendly in the long run.
2. Bring in Bamboo
The first switch to bamboo that I did personally was bamboo ‘cotton pads’ – so that means stopping using those cotton rounds to remove my makeup and swapping them for bamboo washable ones instead.
Another bamboo product I’ve seen which is the next one to replace is Biodegradable Bamboo Cotton Buds. You know those ear buds we use to clean our ears? Yep, those, but this time made from strong quality earbud wooden sticks and bamboo cotton tips, still made for great hygienic cleansing.
You can get hold of bamboo ear buds from The Willow Trader – a retailer that specialises in sustainable beauty and health products. These bamboo ear swabs have been crafted to be made with perfume-free cotton, making them hypoallergenic so that they are suitable for suitable for sensitive skin. Also, these anti-bacterial & anti-fungal cotton ear buds and bamboo wooden sticks won’t bend. They’re pretty sturdy!
Have a think about the amount of cotton wool style products you currently use, and think about how they can be reduced – cotton rounds and ear buds as a start. This pack of bamboo cotton ear buds mentioned is perfect for families that are trying to reduce their carbon footprints, and being aware of the benefits of cutting down plastic consumption with everyday essentials.
3. Use Dry Shampoo
If you really can, unless it’s absolutely necessary, skip washing your hair every day and instead, switch to dry shampoos. Especially if you have a lighter hair colour, in which dry shampoo works best (although saying that, Batiste do an incredible brunette version).
These no-rinse formulations not only helps save water but also keeps your hair healthier too, as washing everyday can strip the oils out faster and dry out your hair more. Plus, you loose more when you wash!
4. Try to Ween Off Disposable Razors
Single blade or multi-use razors with replaceable cartridges are a greener alternative when it comes to body grooming, and these days, they aren’t as expensive as they once were.
Steer clear of disposable razors as these tend to always be made from plastic, and they literally go to waste very quickly. Blade razors where you change up the heads ensure that you’ve shaved off unwanted hair more than enough number of times before you can change up the head and re-use.
5. Look at Menstrual Cups
Of course, us women can’t have much control over period flow, but what we can control is how we choose how to deal with it and how we carry out our period hygeine.
We all know that sanitary towels and tampons are probably the most convenient option, but they contribute to the landfill quite massively. The sustainable alternative is the menstrual cup. These cups, made with medical grade silicone, are safe, reusable, can last for up to 10 years before needing replacement.
6. Always Favour Recyclable Packaging
When you start looking, you start to notice that we have so much packaging in our homes that tends to be plastic. A little like the point made at the start of this piece – around glass bottles – our bathrooms are the worst for it.
Be mindful about it. Keep a check on the plastic bottles and tubes that pile up in your makeup bag and cosmetic drawers, etc etc. All this never ending plastic bottle packaging adds to the misery of our Earths ever-piling plastic waste. The more glass and card we use – or ocean waste plastic – the better.
Luckily, many brands are recognising this problem and have simple solutions in place. Willow for example offers sustainable beauty products with packaging made from bamboo and car – they even use charcoal dental floss!
Do you have any tips you would like to share around helping people live more sustainable lives? Especially across health and beauty? Do let me know in the comments.