SUSTAINABLE COSMETICS: TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE?

SUSTAINABLE COSMETICS: TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE?

DENIZ AKKAYA

Cosmetic companies are starting to take greener paths through eco-packaging and refillable products.

The list of cosmetics with sustainable and climate-neutral formulations and packaging is growing! Companies are paying more attention to their ecological footprints and are committed to protecting the climate. Pharmacies, supermarkets and perfumeries began to fill up with products made up of recyclable materials and environmentally friendly ingredients.

Cosmetics companies are responding to their customers’ demands for greater transparency about formulations and packaging types and are exploring ways to reduce plastic waste. The damage caused by the beauty industry to the environment, both due to its packaging and its ingredients, is one of the most talked about topics of recent times, and we no longer have the luxury of tolerating the toxicity of industries!

Especially in the beauty and cosmetics sector, plastic containers and lids also hide the smallest particles in the formulation, such as peeling granules made from microplastics or dissolved polymers that are washed into the oceans by drain.

Many cosmetic companies are trying to offer solutions to the problem of plastic packaging and are exploring ways to produce alternative packaging by replacing materials with climate-friendly options. In order to simplify integration, move to more sustainable packaging and create more transparency for consumers, the venture SPICE, initiated by L’Oreal and Quantis, consulting companies on sustainability, has created an eco-design tool with which cosmetic companies can calculate the ecological impact of packaging materials on the climate from creation to final recycling. The tool simulates various scenarios of how different packaging designs contribute to reducing its ecological footprint. This could be, for example, glass jars instead of plastic tubes, recycled materials, or biodegradable packaging.

As well as reducing plastic packaging, return models for used products are another way to avoid waste. It’s always a better option to turn to brands that offer campaigns where you can choose a new beauty product for free if a certain number of empty packaging is returned. A well-known example here is the cosmetics brand MAC, which offers such a model with the Back to MAC program. Under this program, if you bring six of any empty original packaging back, you can get a free eyeshadow.

Other big brands, such as Dior, Mugler and Hourglass, are increasingly relying on refillable products. Mugler offers refill options for its perfumes, while Dior offers refill options not only for perfumes, but also for foundations and creams. Babor and Guerlain are one of the brands that rely on recycled and reusable packaging materials. Babor aims to produce 100% recyclable product packaging and reduce the use of plastics. Guerlain uses recycled glass for 95% of their perfume bottles, but here, too, the target is 100%.

The beauty industry aims to be eco-friendly by 2030, offering alternatives to plastic packaging, ecological ingredients and more refill options. Consumers’ commitment to nature conservation by demanding greater transparency and a call to use resource-saving materials will continue to encourage companies to rethink their ecological impact and thus encourage the creation of innovative, sustainable ideas. The goal here is producing and consuming products that not only feel good but also do something positive for the environment; not to trash our only house 🙂

NEW SKINCARE JUNKIES: MEN!

Imagery via Loops Beauty&MILK Makeup x Very Good Light

NEW SKINCARE JUNKIES: MEN!

DENIZ AKKAYA

Why would products have genders when skin problems don’t?

According to Allied Market Research, the men’s personal care market is estimated to reach $ 166 billion by 2022. This trend is, of course, directly related to the change in the world’s concept of masculinity. Younger men are more open and confident enough to try these new cosmetics. However, despite changes in consumer behaviour and the growing demand for male beauty products, most brands can’t meet these expectations. This is especially true for brands that have adopted stereotypical gender roles as a principle and support the traditional image of masculinity.

Brands that cannot meet the demands offer a great opportunity to the brands that respond to consumer demands faster and more effectively. Seeing the increasing demand for men’s personal care products in China, Foreo introduced the cleansing product called “Foreo Luna Men” to the Chinese market. So, what happened? It has become the most popular beauty device in China and currently forms about 7% of the country’s beauty device market. The inequality between the female beauty industry and the male beauty industry has been an issue for years. In every market and beauty store we enter, we see shelves full of products for women. Lotions, serums, mists and lots of different products for every need! However, when we look at the men’s aisle, the situation is completely different. Unfortunately, it isn’t possible to see anything other than shaving materials and 3-in-1 shampoos in the men’s section…

Imagery via Horace
Imagery via Horace

Beauty is a giant $ 532 billion industry. However, men make up less than 1% of this giant industry -while women apply their 10-step skincare routine every night- men take care of all their problems with 3-in-1 shampoo, conditioner and body wash products. The cultural pressure on our beauty shelves is present today as an invisible duo: “for women” and “for men”. Pastel labels and glittering fonts “for women”, all black packaging for “men”…

Much more than a celebrity’s brand, Fenty Skin was launched in July with a message that is genderless, vegan, eco-friendly and celebrates diversity, originality, and all ethnicities. Just like Fenty Beauty, one of the key factors in the success of Fenty Skin, which initiates new but necessary dialogues in the industry, is that its inclusiveness is holistic, authentic and not show-off in terms of both its products and campaign messages. Another important factor is that the brand covers all genders. A skincare brand that includes brand ambassadors outside of the male, female and gender binary system is not something we’ve seen very often until now. Fenty Skin’s brand ambassadors include Zanaughtti, who defines herself outside of the gender binary system, and Lil Nas X, the artist who describes herself as queer. And this is how Rihanna was able to conquer the hearts of the Gen Z with both Fenty Beauty and Fenty Skin.

               The increasing apathy of Generation Z towards the gender binary system seems to be a factor that will force the beauty industry to change. The reason this generation supports genderless beauty is simple: a concealer works miracles for anyone who wants to mask the effects of the late-night hours, regardless of what gender you identify with! The year is 2020 and, the idea that men want to look good too is no longer radical.

Cover imagery via Milk Makeup x Very Good Light