Following on from the popularity of my blog post about the back to school Eco pencil case and all the lovely comments, I’m going to do a mini-series about what is inside an eco make-up bag? It might give some eco inspiration for gifts for the special ladies out there, all these little items would make great stocking fillers, should I dare even mention the Christmas word yet!
Some may argue that being ‘Eco’ makes even wearing makeup questionable, do we really need it? Is it something we can live without? I would love to embrace the natural look and someday I may get to the point of not caring enough what others think to do that. When I don’t wear make-up, I get asked “Is everything OK? You look tired or… ill?” Wearing makeup can actually be positive and making the effort with ourselves in the morning means we can take on each day with self-confidence. The beauty industry and plenty of women out there have to agree with that!
When considering sustainability and beauty brands, there are three key things to consider and research: Brand, Product and Packaging. I hope to cover these areas in the the next few posts and I’ll look at different approaches of being sustainable and making Eco choices when buying make-up products.
1) Research the brand, questions like do they test on animals? Do they have a robust sustainability statement? Do they treat suppliers fairly? Do they offset their carbon emissions?
2) The product itself. What does it contain? Is it certified Vegan? Is it actually any good?
3) The packaging. Do it contain unnecessary single use plastic in the wrapping? Is the packaging reusable or recyclable?
From my days working with beauty brands at Boots head office in Nottingham, I used to run weekly sales figures each Monday morning. The #1 selling line in the whole of Boots was a make-up touch up stick followed closely by a well known mascara brand. It was quite a while back now but I don’t think much will have changed other than perhaps sales of antibacterial hand gel are on the up with the corona-virus pandemic and lipstick sales down with everyone having to wear face masks. Mascara is the place I want to start with the inside the make-up bag series.
One of the environmental issues with buying any make-up is after it is used they are then tossed in the bin and go to landfill. This refillable mascara by Zao caught my attention. The starter kit is an eco friendly varnished bamboo case with the mascara of choice. You can then buy the refillable mascara at a reduced cost when it is finished. I love this, as it is reducing the waste that goes to landfill with the reusable component.
Zao is an established brand since 2012. It started in France and took inspiration from places like Asia, and hence the bamboo influence for packaging. It is now sold in many countries and the UK selling on-line. The benefits of using bamboo is that it is fast growing plant that means that it is quickly regenerated and plentiful. (I have another blog post I am currently writing all about the use of bamboo for clothing). As a company, Zao have taken as stance on animal cruelty with products being PETA certified. This is buying with confidence that not only the product you are buying hasn’t been tested on animals but that the ingredients they have used are also certified Vegan. There are so many other good reasons to support this brand and the questions are answered under the FAQ section on their website including details on all of their ingredients and use of things such as Palm Oil.
The mascara came in lovely little cotton pouch. I liked that it is reusable and makes it feel very ‘giftable’ (what, why can’t we make up words?!). I thought it was reasonably priced at around £20 for the starter kit in the bamboo case with the ongoing cost of the refills being a lot less. It didn’t feel cheap and more like a little luxury. The refill cases are plastic but made from rPET, a recycled material and it is still a lot less wastage. The wands are included every time for hygiene reasons. I have also recently discovered you can send old make-up wands to wildlife charities that can use them for grooming small animals! Perhaps you can have a box at home to keep the wands and send them in bulk to either of these places that are accepting clean wands:
Barnacle Hedgehog Rescue 8 Lower Road, Barnacle Coventry CV7 9LD
Pets And Wildlife Service (PAWS) Staffordshire 4 Norfolk Grove, Great Wyrley WS6 6JS
I am sure that Zao will feature other items in my make-up bag, the refillable options are also available this felt tip eye liner and eye shadow compacts too.