Due to rising emissions, polluted ecosystems, and the destructive impact of natural disasters there has recently been a huge global push towards sustainable beauty. In addition, the pandemic has emphasized the growing need for sustainable development. After all, consumers and brands are prioritizing health and well-being more than ever before.
What does sustainable beauty even mean? Is it a real thing or just another marketing ploy designed to seduce more spending? and how can we make more sustainable choices?
What is sustainable beauty?
To put it simply, sustainable beauty is a term used to describe products, packaging and processes that are safe for people and the planet. It's about making sure everything from sourcing, manufacturing, packaging and selling is making the tiniest impact possible. It can also be referred to as “green” or “clean” beauty.
For brands, it involves manufacturing products in the most ethical way and only using sustainable ingredients. For consumers, it involves changing the way you shop and choosing products and brands that will meet your needs without detrimentally impacting the environment or human safety.
The elements affect sustainable beauty
In 2008, The Guardian reported that the shipping industry contributes more than 1 billion tons of Carbon Dioxide each year through the world’s merchant fleet (not including freight or air shipping). The major issue from increased CO2 is that it acts as a “greenhouse gas.” What does this mean? Due to its molecular structure, CO2 absorbs and emits infrared radiation. This warms the Earth’s surface and lower levels of the atmosphere, wreaking havoc on our climate. The extreme heat, heavy downpours and flooding that comes with climate change will negatively affect infrastructure, agriculture, health, forestry, transportation, air and water quality.
Do you know the most packaging are plastics? A report claims that only 9% of all plastic waste ever produced has been recycled and around 12% has been incinerated. The other 79% has ended up in dumps, landfills, or our oceans. The accumulation of plastic objects and particles (like plastic bags, bottles, and microbeads) in the Earth’s environment long-term has many adverse effects.
Speaking of plastic, microbeads are solid plastic particles that are found in many products worldwide. The bad news is, given that microbeads are less than five millimeters in size, they’re too small to be filtered out by our sewer systems. Instead, they run straight down drains into waterways and add to the plastic pollution swirling around our oceans. There’s also the matter of brands using toxic ingredients in their products, which can be harmful to our health.
How to Be More Sustainable With Beauty
As a consumer, there are a few key ways you can help the sustainable beauty movement.
1. Buy From Brands That Focus on Sustainable Practices
Firstly, invest in companies that are committed to sustainability in their sourcing, manufacturing and shipping processes.
For instance, ECO BOOM is a sustainable healthcare products brand with the practice of using bamboo and plant-based fiber for their diaper, wipes and paper products instead of plastic.
2. Buy From Brands That Support the Environment
Do you know what’s even better than buying from a brand that practices sustainability? Buying from a brand that goes the extra mile to protect the planet.
Take ECO BOOM, for example. ECO BOOM’s plant-based diaper joins a lot of biodiversity protection program, including animal habitats protection and educational programs in local trying to increase the awareness of environmental protection.
You should prioritize products with natural, non-toxic ingredients. Check product labels before you stock up on your usual favorites or something brand new.
4. Recycle Your Packaging
Recycling and reuse of plastic products to replace single-use plastics are necessary for brands to prevent and reduce plastic pollution. Although, the consumer has a responsibility too.
Whether you’ve bought a beauty product with plastic, paper, or cardboard packaging, make sure you put it in your recycling bin once you’ve removed it. Also, keep in mind that any containers need to be empty and clean before disposal. Otherwise, the remnants can contaminate other recyclables.
5. Reduce Your Water Usage
When washing your face, turn off the water tap when you don’t need it. Actually, try to use as little water as possible. It sounds pretty basic, but this can prevent water wastage and ultimately conserve one of the planet’s most important natural resources.
Sustainable beauty is a complex subject that can be difficult to discuss, but it’s worth having the conversation. Having said that, there are some positive changes that you can make in your everyday life to support the cause, as well as choosing companies that share the same environmental values.