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How beauty brands addressed sustainability in 2019

Beauty brands have been busy cleaning up their act in 2019, as concern about the environmental impact of the industry rises. We take a look at some of the sustainable initiatives that made the news.

Concern about the environmental impact of the beauty industry has been (...)

Concern about the environmental impact of the beauty industry has been rising in 2019


Dove hit the headlines in October, when it announced plans to replace its plastic bottles with recycled ones and reduce its virgin plastic use by more than 20,500 tonnes per year. The Unilever-owned beauty giant will start the process of launching new, 100% recycled plastic bottles (where possible), across all its product ranges in North America and Europe by the end of this year.


The Procter & Gamble-owned personal care brand Gillette made all its disposable razors and replaceable-blade cartridge units recyclable in Canada this year. The brand also rolled out a program with waste management company TerraCycle, making it easier for Canadian consumers to recycle their old razors.

Herbal Essences

P&G-owned haircare label Herbal Essences marked World Water Day in March with a series of recyclable shampoo and conditioner bottles comprising 25% beach plastic. The limited-edition bottles, which were created in partnership with TerraCycle, were available through June 2019.

L’Occitane en Provence

The L’Occitane Group, which counts the beauty brands L’Occitane en Provence, Melvita, and Erborian as part of its portfolio, teamed up with the sustainable plastic innovator Loop Industries this year to get more eco-friendly with its packaging. The group plans to incorporate Loop PET plastic (which is 100% sustainable) into its product packaging from the year 2022.


British luxury retailer Selfridges announced in November that it is banning single-use, plastic-based beauty wipes from its store shelves, in a bid to encourage more sustainable purchases instead. It is estimated that the wipes can take up to 100 years to fully degrade.

Natura & Co

In July Brazil-based beauty giant Natura & Co, which owns the brands Natura, Aesop and The Body Shop, pledged to limit its contribution to global temperature rise to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, as part of the "Business Ambition for 1.5°C: Our Only Future" campaign. The group also committed to reaching net-zero emissions by the year 2050.

Garnier USA

Garnier USA marked Earth Day by encouraging people to recycle their beauty empties and offering shoppers a free recycling bin. The brand, which has an ongoing partnership with the with waste management company TerraCycle, claims to have diverted more than 11.9 Million empties from landfills.


L’Oréal has been working on making beauty packaging more environmentally-friendly with the packaging company Albéa. The duo announced the invention of a carton-based cosmetic tube in October, which sees plastic for the most part replaced with a bio-based, paper-like material. The creation is expected to start going into industrial production in the second half of 2020.


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