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Better Beauty

by Northern Life

Eco-tips to clean up your beauty regime 

Beauty regimes are centred around cleanliness, but they’re often dirty for the environment.

From harsh chemicals, packaging waste, and energy use, keeping ourselves looked after is having a negative impact on Mother Earth. So why not challenge yourself to say no to ‘fast beauty’ and try our eco-tips to clean up your regime while compromising very little.

 #1 Seek out marine extracts and algae 

Marine extracts and algae are powerhouses for your skin. They’re also incredibly eco-friendly as they turn CO2 into oxygen as they grow, meaning your cream, serum or mask will have already offset most, if not all, of the carbon it took to produce it and get it to you. But remember, do your research to find a brand that sources its marine extracts from a sustainable, local source.

#2 Go large with your hero products 

If you have that holy grail product you know you’re going to buy again and again, buy it in the largest size available to save on packaging waste and energy emissions. Just be sure to check the use-by date and judge whether you’ll be able to finish it up in time.

#3 Say no to black plastic 

Black plastic packaging is notoriously difficult to recycle as the filtering machines struggle to pick up the black pigment, meaning they often end up in landfill.

#4 Cut down your consumption with 2-in-1 products 

Choosing multi-purpose beauty products, like lip and cheek tint, powder foundation, 2-in-1 cleanser and toner, can help you streamline your beauty regime, save you time and money and, importantly, reduce your environmental impact.

#5 Switch to cold water halfway through washing 

Hot water uses more energy and generates more CO2 than cold water. It also isn’t any better at killing germs than cold water. So next time you’re washing your hair, face or body, switch to cooler water halfway through. This will also help to close your pores, reduce oiliness and prevent dry skin.

#6 Add a recycling bin to your bathroom 

It’s easy enough to remember to separate your recycling in the kitchen, but the bathroom is often a different story. Make it as easy as possible for yourself by simply adding a small bin for recyclable packaging or buy a bin with in-built separation.

#7 Say bye-bye to disposable plastic razors 

Spend a little more and buy a razor made from durable materials like metal or bamboo which you can keep for longer – just buy replaceable razor heads.

#8 Gift unwanted products 

It can be hard to tell from an advert or a sample whether a product is right for you. Gift “gently used” unwanted products to friends and family, or donate them to a local women’s shelter.

#9 Don’t always accept sample sachets 

Most sample sachets of beauty products aren’t recyclable. That’s because they’re made from mixed materials which makes it impossible for machines to separate during the recycling process. Stop and think before accepting a sample to take home in store or to add to your basket online.

#10 Wash out empty products before recycling 

Most plastic, glass or metal containers can be recycled, but not everyone knows that you should wash them to remove any residue before placing them in the recycling bin. Otherwise, they’ll be rejected and sent to landfill instead despite your best intentions.

#11 Sign up for TerraCycle 

Some beauty packaging may have the TerraCycle logo. This means it can be recycled, but not through your normal recycling collection. Sign up to the TerraCycle programme online and they’ll send you a collection box for free that you can send back via your local post office.