Reducing single-use waste and cleaning up our act – Crystal Rose dives a little deeper into the plastic problem and discusses a few of the good guys that are doing great things in the beauty industry

Defined in the Cambridge Dictionary as ‘causing little or no damage to the environment and therefore able to continue for a long time,’ the word ‘sustainability’ in the beauty sphere covers the ethical side – being PETA-approved, vegan-friendly, organic and eco-friendly – and the recyclability of packaging. Using recyclable packaging is vital, especially after recent claims that 70% of the waste in the beauty industry is from the packaging itself, according to Arnaud Meysselle, CEO of Ren Clean Skincare. These are all things that should be taken into account when considering the sustainability of a product. As part of a generation that’s clued-up, invested-in and passionate about our planet, we think sustainability is key. Aiming to make it a little easier for you to switch out the old habits and make way for a few good-for-nature alternatives, here are our suggestions for small changes that could make all the difference…

Recycle better

Here’s a great way to reduce plastic waste: Send your beauty product packaging to recycling programme TerraCycle ( Partnered with Garnier, TerraCycle is a free service that welcomes all containers (including tubes, lids and caps) regardless of the brand. Simply print a free-shipping label, take your empties to your local drop-off location and reduce plastic waste for the planet.

Additionally skincare apothecary Kiehls ( has launched its Recycle And Be Rewarded programme where you earn a stamp for each empty bottle you return and on your tenth return you can choose a complimentary travel product of your choice.

Reduce single-use

We can’t shout this enough. As Collins Dictionary’s 2018 word of the year, use of the term ‘single-use’ has shown a four-fold increase since 2013 and can be seen as an indication of the global movement to kick our addiction to disposable products. We’re hoping that brands may follow the suit of the cruelty-free store Lush (, which has recently opened its first ‘naked’ shop in the UK in a bid to ditch plastic packaging. Skincare saviour Dove is also in the midst of its #CareThatGoesFuther initiative, aiming to move to 100% recycled and recyclable plastic by the end of this year – watch out for the refillable deodorant that’s currently being piloted. Plus REN has recently released a body cream to add to its totally sustainable range and pledges to have zero waste by 2021. Using packaging made from 20% reclaimed ocean plastic and 80% from recycled bottles, this range also features the first, and only, 100% recyclable pump bottle.

Many of us are aware of the effort to banish the use of single-use make-up wipes – as it can take many moons for the polyester sheets to biodegrade – but now it’s said that the use of cotton pads could be just as harmful to the environment. And, with hints that there may be some stronger laws coming into place with regard to plastic waste in the beauty industry, now is a good time to switch out those single-use products and make way for a whole new generation of sustainable, good-for-nature tools.

Breathe & Be Incense

Local heroes

Here are a few superstars near us that are at the forefront of sustainability in the city and are doing great things for the environment…

L’Occitane, available at The Bath Priory

With ethical sourcing at its heart, L’Occitane has forged long-term partnerships with local growers and works directly with over 130 French farmers and 10,000 pickers. Producing eco-refills, packaging made with recycled materials and using renewable resources from sustainably managed forests, L’Occitane also limits its carbon footprint by lowering the use of air transport and using renewable energies, wherever possible. The first and only spa by L’Occitane in the UK, The Bath Priory offers a sanctuary of tranquility, while being earth and eco-friendly. Plus the recently launched initiative with TerraCycle welcomes customers to bring their empties into any L’Occitane boutique to be recycled.


The only product range on the market where all proceeds go directly to charity, in this case Dorothy House Hospice Care, Ubiety ( is fully sustainable and uses vegan and environmentally friendly
ingredients only. Launched in February, the brand has quality, efficacy, integrity and giving back at its core.

My Clarins, available at Frontlinestyle

Eco-friendly bottles, plant-based ingredients and suitable for vegans, My Clarins is the latest skincare range that’s targeted at ages 18–25. Keeping the nasties out with anti-pollution ingredients and ideal for acne-prone skin, My Clarins products can be found at Frontlinestyle ( on Monmouth Street.

Breathe & Be Incense

Founder Ceri Evans, from Breathe & Be Incense (, tells us her products are all sustainably sourced, plastic-free, compostable, predominantly British-made and include zero waste – she’s a champion of sustainability indeed! Breathe & Be Incense is set to host monthly incense-making workshops to spread the beauty and benefits of incense.

Natural Spa Factory

Established in Bath, Natural Spa Factory ( creates skincare products using botanically sourced ingredients (such as herbs, plants and flowers) and are all free from parabens, sulphates, MCI and microbeads. Plus, all products are not tested on animals, and they are made in the UK or France and are recyclable when possible.

Kings Grooming

The UK-made, vegan and cruelty-free Kings Grooming range ( comprises of environmentally sustainable ethical fragrances and grooming products that contain no parabens or palm oil. Kings also encourages men to challenge the unhealthy, unrealistic ideas that society holds about masculinity; ideas that often contribute to anxiety and low moods. Kings also funds local charities Mentoring Plus and Bristol Mind, as well as national male suicide prevention charity CALM. ■