How do you become a conscious beauty consumer? Image by Adobe Stock.
Being a conscious beauty consumer is really quite simple, it starts with understanding what a conscious beauty consumer is and understanding the effect your consumption has on the planet. For example, your favourite brand of foundation might be packaged in a plastic bottle with a pump dispenser, these are too hard to recycle so they will end up in the landfill. Your favourite shampoo or conditioner may contain harmful ingredients, that when washed down the drain ends up in our waterways and oceans. And your favourite scent may have been tested on animals.
Did you know that 120 billion units of packaging are produced every year by the global beauty industry? Many of these are near impossible to recycle, contributing to the worlds plastic-waste problem and ultimately being burned, buried, tracked for landfill or simply just littered on our streets and waterways when management is insufficient. The enormity of the world’s plastic pollution problem might have you thinking that your actions won’t make a difference, but here is where we need to change our thinking and realise that if everyone made at least one change in their consumption habits, together as residents of planet Earth, we can make a difference and help to save our planet.
Here are some simple tips to help you become a more conscious beauty consumer.
Support eco-friendly businesses
You have the power with your dollar to choose what brands take your money simply by choosing to support eco- friendly businesses who choose sustainable packaging and ethical ingredients.
Recycle empty beauty containers
It can be hard to know what can be recycled and what can’t, so here is a simple guide to go by:
Plastic bottles – Most plastic bottles can be recycled, such as shampoo, conditioner or body wash. Just make sure you rinse them out before you pop them in your recycling bin. It is important to note that if you have a little product left in your bottles, do not put it down the sink as this will end up polluting our waterways, instead, take as much out as you can and pop the waste in the bin. Also, anything with a pump dispenser, such as foundation bottle lids cannot be recycled. These will need to go in the bin too.
Aerosols – Most hairspray and deodorant aerosols can be recycled if completely empty.
Mascara, makeup palettes, lipstick – Most of these cannot be recycled in your recycle bin. However, some brands such as Emma Lewisham has become part of the TerraCycle program, where you can send her any of your empty makeup container to recycle.
Glass Jars – Any glass jar that can be cleaned can be recycled.
Makeup brushes and fragrance bottles – These cannot be recycled.
Opt for biodegradable products
Another easy way to reduce your impact on the planet is to choose products that are biodegradable. Plastic waste can take hundreds of years to decompose so if you choose brands that have biodegradable ingredients such as hairbrushes and toothbrushes made from bamboo or cornstarch.
Avoid single-use anything
Making choices like not using sheet masks and wet wipes or single-use cotton buds can really help to reduce your waste footprint. The basic rule of thumb is to avoid anything single-use.