To commemorate Earth Day on April 22nd, we're highlighting eco-minded beauty brands that aim to significantly reduce waste and pollution. We're talking ditching redundant packaging, eschewing toxic chemicals and synthetics and supporting sustainably-sourced, plant-derived ingredients.
Once pigeonholed as a category for the supremely sensitive or devoutly ethical, eco-friendly beauty is having its moment in the limelight. Thanks to high-tech advances in formulating natural ingredients and the growing crop of naturally-minded brands making their way onto our shelves, we are now able to enjoy skincare, haircare and make-up products that not only do us good but make us feel good too.
Stop wasting your wipes
When it comes to removing make-up there's a slew of options on the market. Reaching for a face wipe - guaranteed to slough away waterproof mascara and convenient enough that you don’t have to leave your bed - is tempting. For those who want to avoid single-use products and do their bit for the environment, there’s another option that is equally kind to your skin and the planet.
Microfibre towelettes - like this one by Face Halo - work by using cold or warm water, to loosen your makeup. The HaloTech fiber strands, which are 100 times finer than a human hair, to reach deep into your pores. They can be washed over 200 times before needing to be replaced saving you serious coin and sparing the environment from thousands. A set of three will set you back $30 and are available at priceline.com.au.
Plastic not so fantastic
Australian oceans are being overrun by bathroom waste - and not the kind you're thinking. We're talking about the plastic products we discard on the daily - plastic toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes and disposable razors.
The EPA estimates that 2 billion razors are thrown away in the U.S. each year. Banish founder and CEO Lottie Dalziel, explains: "Every plastic razor you've ever used in your life still exists somewhere on this earth and they will outlive you! Which was the reason I decided to make the switch to a safety razor. I've had my closest shave ever and find it really easy to use. The blades are also really easy to change and I'm so excited to have a razor for life."
Try a metal safety razor like the 29L Parker - it's designed especially for women but and available to shop here. We also these clever bamboo toothbrushes which are made from sustainable materials enhanced with activated charcoal.
While putting charcoal on your face might sound very unglamorous, it's fast becoming one of the most trendy skincare ingredients out there. Why? Charcoal contains natural properties that act like a magnet, drawing impurities such as make-up and dirt out from the skin's surface.
Incorporating a charcoal-based product into your daily regimen can balance oil production and increase skin's radiance over time. Since it doesn't contain any nasty chemicals, this wonder ingredient can be used on sensitive complexions while still being effective enough to tackle adult acne. The benefits extend beyond your complexion - charcoal can be used all over your body, whitens teeth naturally and worked into your hair care regimen to balance an oily scalp.
Switch out aerosol sprays
There's so much not to love about aerosols. Our dry shampoos, canned volumizers and deodorants need compressed gases or hydrocarbons to do their thing. And once these chemicals are released in the air our collective carbon footprint gets bigger. The effects of aerosols also affect our air quality and waterways: Studies also show that aerosols make for more pollution-rich clouds, which shrinks the size of rain droplets that form.
To spare the air try a solid deodorant like Wanderlightly's Deodorant Balm which you can purchase from Banish for $16.95 a pop. What's more? Wanderlightly's Deodorant Balm is handmade in small batches & free from toxins, aluminium, parabens, dyes, synthetic fragrances, talc’s, mineral oils or anything nasty.
You can also try switching out aerosol-based texture sprays for those packaged in pump-fueled containers. Aveda's Rinseless Refresh Micellar Hair & Scalp Refresher ($32; at adorebeauty.com.au) uses micellar technology to cleanse your scalp and restyle second-day hair. Aussie eco-warrior and Aveda ambassador Elyse Knowles has designed a chic tote bag in collaboration with the beauty brand that will donate 100% of profits to Water Aid, a clean water project in India.