It’s Springtime. Out with the old and in the with new. Have you thought about how to make your Spring skincare more sustainable? Did you know that beauty products can have some ugly effects on the environment, choking landfills with trash and polluting our waterways? Thankfully, companies large and small are stepping up their sustainability game, prioritizing the responsible sourcing of ingredients, implementing earth-friendly manufacturing processes, and experimenting with inventive recycling programs. But we all have a role to play. Even the tiniest gestures make an impact, right down to the number of styling products we use in our hair.
Here are three easy ways to make your skincare routine more sustainable and reduce your ecological footprint.
Check Your Skincare Ingredients
Take some time to read the label on the next product you’re considering. It’s a sustainability deal breaker if it contains any phthalates, mercury, toluene, lead, formaldehyde, petroleum distillates, parabens, or BHA. These toxic chemicals are some of the most detrimental to your health as well as the planet. For a comprehensive list of skincare ingredients to avoid, read this post. In general, opt for pure, clean and organic beauty products that don’t include harmful ingredients.
Stay away from palm oil or palm oil derivatives which are found in many personal care products. The palm oil industry is linked to major issues such as deforestation, indigenous rights violations, and extinctions – affecting some of the most vulnerable species on the planet. In fact, the World Wildlife Fund reported that 300 feet of rainforest are cleared every hour to make way for palm oil production.
Steer clear of anything containing microbeads. Until recently, these tiny particles of plastic were often found in exfoliators and toothpaste. Since they aren’t biodegradable, once they go down your drain, they end up polluting the ocean and harming marine life. They’re also too tiny to be filtered out by cleanup efforts, making them a permanent part of the ocean’s ecosystem. By 2050 our oceans are expected to contain more plastic than fish. Though some countries are moving to ban microbeads, they are still found in many products.
Overall, always do your research to make sure that the companies you support share your sustainability standards. Choose skincare and beauty companies whose values are rooted in your health as well as the health of the planet. Read Alpstories’ story and philosophy here.
Try a Cold Shower
While a warm shower on a cold day can be amazing, giving your water heater a break from time to time can actually have its benefits. Even just a cooler than usual shower will help reduce your carbon footprint. Plus, hot water can strip your skin of natural oils leaving it dry and itchy.
If you can stand it, cold showers are a recommended Ayurvedic practice. Health benefits include improved circulation and toned skin. For a traditional routine, do a full body dry brush to get your circulation going and exfoliate dead skin followed by a massage using either sesame or almond oil. Then turn the shower to cold – or as cold as you can stand – and hop in. If you can’t take the cold all at once, try starting with warm water and gradually moving to fully cold. Stay in the shower until your body temperature rises to where you’re toasty and warm – this is your circulation increasing. Make sure the bathroom is warm for when you get out and that your towel is close at hand!
Recycle Your Empty Skincare and Beauty Products
Over 29 million tons of plastic ends up in landfills every year. The average American throws away 159 pounds of plastic every year, with more than half of throwing away empty skincare and beauty products. But many of those empties are actually recyclable. Product packaging, lipstick tubes, eyeshadow pans, glass bottles, and plastic bottles are all recyclable. Always check the bottom before you chuck. If there is a 1 or 2 on the bottom, rinse it out and recycle it. FYI, our bottles are 100% recyclable.
You can also join something like TerraCycle’s Personal Care and Beauty Recycling Program. All you have to do is rinse your containers and ship them out. One Terra Cycle collects them, they sort the plastic by polymer type and extrude it into plastic pellets. These are then made into new recyclable plastic products so the cycle can continue. Here’s a full list of what they accept.
Other Things You Can Do To Be Sustainable
At home is start by being mindful of your water use. Turn off the shower while shaving, and skip a shampoo occasionally. If you want to go full-on farm-to-face. Also,look for labels which guarantee the use of renewable ingredients.
Excuse us for shouting, but…RECYCLE not just your old skincare products but anything that is recyclable. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, recycling just ten plastic bottles saves enough energy to power a laptop for more than 25 hours.
Ultimately, the best way to deal with this complex issue is simply to use less. This doesn’t necessarily mean using lemon slices instead of deodorant , unless you’re into that kind of thing. But it does mean thinking about whether we really need such a vast array of cosmetic and beauty products in our lives; from the tiny free samples and sachets cluttering our bathroom cabinets, to the day/night/male/female version of the same face cream.
Keep Your Skin Sustainable with Alpstories
Sustain your skin with Alpstories’ wide variety of Personalized Skincare products. From body oils and milks, to the most exquisite, supreme oils, creams and organic ingredients, our Beauty Wizard assists you to create a formula that addresses your unique skin need.
Alpine Botanicals are at the center of every unique formula, 100% pure and gentle. From the European Alps to your skin to deliver maximum results — without a single drop of any harmful ingredients or animal testing.
Our commitment doesn’t end with the purity and quality of superior organic and natural ingredients. Here at Alpstories, we hold-fast to a strict green code of being sustainable.
“There is no such thing as ‘away’. When we throw anything away it must go somewhere.”
– Annie Leonard