The Sustainable Swaps To Make In Your Beauty Routine | AD

Small changes that make a big impact in your routine

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*This post features an advertorial from Molton Brown & gifted products

We’re trying to do a little better when it comes to sustainability, right? You’ve got your tote bags, you’re packing down your cardboard for the recycling, but what about your beauty routine? There are SO many things you can do, but today I’m giving you the low-down on how I’ve changed things up over the past 12 months to be a little kinder to the planet.

One brand that are making waves on the sustainability front is the iconic heritage folks, Molton Brown. You love the hand wash, always sneak the mini body lotion out of a hotel room, but did you know that the brand has been made in England since 1971?! That they are cruelty free? Or that 97% of their facility waste is currently recycled, re-used or composted? Along with their ‘Refillable Collection‘ of best-selling hand washes, they are providing a tonne of options for those who want a bit of luxury, with some planet-loving credentials *raises hand*. Here’s eight ways to do the same with your beauty routine…

REFILL YOUR PRODUCTS. It’s an option that’s slowly filtering into the beauty world and it’s such a great idea. Buy a product, love it and use it up, then refill it – without the need for new packaging. YAAAASSSS. Molton Brown are now offering this service with their 27 Eaux de Toilette and Eaux de Parfum fragrances. 27!! There truly is something for everyone; and designed by 10 perfumers of different ages, backgrounds and experiences, it’s a diverse range of scents. Each Eau de Parfum has a signature key note, which is either an ‘overdose’ of one of the Eau de Toilette ingredients, or something that adds a completely different twist, which is such a good way of having a summer and winter version or a daytime and evening version of a scent, once you find the one you like. Personally I love the Vetiver & Grapefruit Eau de Parfum that gives a kick of citrus with a musky, woody edge. It’s great for year round, but a nice fruity choice for winter I’d say. There’s something to be said for a daily dose of fragrance, even if you’re spending 24/7 inside. It’s fancy and luxe-feeling, but without being too heady, which you know is my fragrance sweet spot. So spritz up away until the last pump and when it’s finished you can return to your local Molton Brown store for a top-up (find more details on that here).

CONVERT TO BAMBOO. I was averaging a pack of cotton pads every three or weeks before I discovered their reusable counterparts. Not cool, I know. But I’ve tried and tested washable bamboo ‘cotton’ pads for the past 18 months or so now and they are I-N-C-R-E-D-I-B-L-E. I have these ones* and would 100% recommend. I just keep a stack in my bathroom and as I use them throw them in the little bag they come with, that I’ve attached to our laundry basket. Then I add them in the wash with whatever I’ve got in there and they come out looking brand new. If you’re struggling to make them work for you, try dampening them a little before you apply your product to them so they don’t soak it all up like a sponge.

GO PRODUCT FREE. Ok, look the Facehalo* is just something else. I have no idea how it works because it’s basically magic. It removes your makeup – waterproof mascara and ALL – without the need for any product. You just dampen it with warm water, stroke it over your face and the makeup just comes right off. I love it so much. Of course I still cleanse with a flannel and do my usual routine after, but it’s meant that I no longer have to use my eye makeup remover so diligently, cutting down on my product consumption. I wash them the same way I do my bamboo pads and it comes out bright white. YUP, I have no idea how it works either.

DITCH THE SHEET MASKS. Sheet masks are the new face wipes, you know? Although there are some sheet masks that are made from biodegradable materials, most packaging options aren’t which just isn’t too fab if you’re trying to make your routine more sustainable. I’ve stopped buying them and I’m just working through ones that I already have. BUT – if you can’t give up the sheet mask life just yet, then why not make your own? It’s super easy and completely customisable to you. Find out how here.

A REUSABLE BUD. I know this sounds super random, but I really do love cotton buds. They are just so handy and as a ridiculously clumsy person I find myself reaching for one most days when I do my makeup. Did you know that you can get reusable buds?! I KNOW. Genius. I’d recommend the LastSwab Beauty – it’s got a pointed nib so is great for rubbing away the remnants of overzealous mascara applications and cleaning up any eyeliner mistakes. It’s easily cleaned with bit of soapy water between uses.

TURN OFF THAT TAP. It’s such a small change, but it can make a huge difference in your water and energy consumption. So whenever you’re brushing your teeth, shaving or throwing on a leave-in conditioner turn off your water supply. Be a good egg, you know? If you can handle it (SPOILER: I can’t), a slightly cooler shower will boost your circulation and is better for your skin and nails in the long-run and again saves on all that good stuff too.

RECYCLE. If your beauty empties aren’t accepted by local recycling services, then have a Google as there are so many beauty counters and shops that now accept beauty empties into their recycling schemes. Most will allow you to bring in used up bottles and jars from all brands and often with a discounted incentive for bringing them in. Make sure they are rinsed thoroughly before dropping them off and separate any pumps and pipettes as these might not be accepted for recycling.

USE STUFF UP. As someone who moved into their previous property with a big box of makeup labelled ‘OLD MAKEUP BOX #3‘, it feels slightly ironic to be writing a point about using stuff up, but I think we’ve all come a long way since the heady days of multiple back-ups and 1897+ lipstick choices. I’ve edited stuff wayyyy down over the years and try not to make too many purchases in categories that are already occupied and if things do start to get a bit out of hand, pass the items that are gathering dust onto friends and family who I’m sure will be extremely willing recipients. I know mine are!

Photos by Mark Newton