The beauty and personal care industries generate over $100 billion annually. Unfortunately, these industries also generate a large carbon footprint and impact our environment in lasting ways.
Whether it’s skincare, makeup, body care, or hair products, here are a few simple ways that you can create a more eco-friendly beauty routine.
Reusable Make-Up Wipes
Disposable wipes may seem like a convenient way to remove makeup at the end of a long day, but they’re known to do more harm than good. Like paper towels, disposable makeup wipes are a huge contributor to landfill waste. They’re not recyclable or compostable and they’ll take over a century to decompose. If flushed down the toilet, these wipes can be detrimental to our sewerage system, or end up in our oceans.
Besides their negative environmental impact, disposable makeup wipes aren’t very effective at cleansing your skin or removing makeup. Quite often, they’ll leave a residue behind, and they can do an especially poor job of removing stubborn eye makeup. In fact, the chemicals, fragrances, and synthetic fibers can cause irritation to both eyes and skin.
A hot cloth cleanse is a tried-and-true method of removing dirt, makeup, and impurities. The cloth gently exfoliates the skin and leaves your pores squeaky clean. Try using Rakot75’s cloth paper towels with a gentle cleanser or makeup removing liquid. As an eco-friendly alternative to disposable wipes, these cloths are soft, durable, and can be rinsed and reused for up to six months.
Solid Shampoo and Soap
Liquid body washes, shampoos, and cleansers are usually packaged in single-use plastic bottles that ultimately end up in a landfill. It’s estimated that 80 BILLION plastic shampoo and conditioner bottles are disposed of annually. Plastic packaging also requires a lot of energy to be produced in the first place.
Many eco-conscious brands are bringing back bar soaps and solid shampoos. Besides the reduction in plastic packaging, bar soaps weigh less than packaged liquid soaps (and take up less space), so they require less energy to be transported. We tend to waste less product when using solid soaps, in comparison to pouring liquid soap or using a pump dispenser.
Many of your favorite liquid soap products are available in a solid form. This includes bath soaps, bubble baths, facial cleansers, shampoos, and conditioners. They just as effective and usually cost the same as their liquid counterparts, so you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Consider Using Refillable Products
You can continue using your favorite liquid products while reducing their environmental impact. By purchasing in bulk and refilling containers, you’ll be eliminating single-use plastic and saving some money while you’re at it.
Hand soaps, body washes, haircare products, and other liquids can be bought in bulk and used to refill smaller glass or multi-use plastic containers. Have some fun by finding chic, reusable bottles that match your bathroom décor.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
We’re all familiar with the three R’s – reduce, reuse, recycle. We’ve already discussed ways that you can reduce (or eliminate) single-use plastic and wipes. How can you reuse the packaging from your beauty products? Here are a few suggestions:
Turn mascara wands into eyebrow tamers! Thoroughly clean the wand to get rid of all the mascara. Now, it can be used like a spoolie to ensure your brows are neat.
Empty spray bottles can be reused in a myriad of ways. Once you’ve rinsed them out, you can fill them with water or toner and continue using them in your hair or skincare routine. Empty cosmetic spray bottles can even be used for household cleaning products. Mix vinegar and water in a 50:50 ratio and use as a natural odor-removing spray. Mix detergent and water and spray on stained clothing as a pre-wash treatment.
Beauty products often come in pots or jars. Rinse them out, poke some holes in the bottom and use the jars as plant pots. Pots and jars can also be used for housing DIY masks
If you can’t reduce or reuse, make the effort to recycle. Sort empty plastic and glass bottles and toss them into their respective recycling bin. You can also check if the manufacturer has their own recycling program. Many beauty brands offer incentives for bringing back packaging to a designated collection station.