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Industry buzz

Green is the new black: sustainable beauty gets a boost in New York

Green is beautiful, if the buzz surrounding the upcoming Sustainable Cosmetics Summit in New York is anything to go by.

As the beauty industry makes a conscious effort to smarten up its act regarding sustainable ingredients, the sixth edition of the annual summit will examine everything from environmentally friendly products to marketing techniques within the business, focusing on how we can replace some of the most contentious chemicals in cosmetics.

Photo: © Bochkarev Photography /

Photo: © Bochkarev Photography /

Amidst growing consumer concerns about the ecological and health impacts of beauty ingredients, the event will present a choice of green emulsifiers and surfactants, as well as sustainable alternatives to squalene and microplastic exfoliants, known for their high environmental footprints. The merits of sustainable palm oil and the safety of natural materials will also be debated and a dedicated workshop is set to focus on paraben-free preservative systems.

The summit will also look at how cosmetic and ingredient firms can add social value and engage with customers, with Shannon Hess from Burt’s Bees explaining how the natural cosmetics brand is making a social difference with its ‘greater good’ business model. Wanda Malhotra, CEO and founder of Surya Brasil, will also be on hand to show how the brand is engaging Brazilian consumers to make sustainable lifestyle changes.

The cosmetic industry appears to be preoccupied with environmental aspects; we want to show how operators can take a holistic perspective when considering sustainability,” says Amarjit Sahota, president of London-based specialist research group Organic Monitor, which is behind the event.

The Sustainable Cosmetics Summit runs from May 14-16. For more information see


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