L’Oréal wants to open a new chapter in Research & Innovation by gradually terminating the use of petroleum derivatives in its formulas over the next few years.

Sustainable formulations

In order to address today’s environmental challenges and meet the demand - heightened by the Covid-19 pandemic - for products that are both good for health and safe for the environment, the group has set itself the goal that by 2030, 95% of its ingredients be derived from renewable plant sources, abundant minerals, or circular processes; and 100% of formulas be respectful of the aquatic environment.

Why not aiming 100% sustainable ingredients? According to L’Oréal, for certain categories, in particular haircare products, it is not yet technically possible to replace all oil-derived ingredients without lowering their performance.

L’Oréal intends to achieve these results by drawing on recent advances in Green Sciences, especially for the sustainably farming of ingredients and the extraction of actives through cutting-edge technological processes. The group is rallying its full range of resources in Green Sciences, including advances in agronomics, together with new developments in biotechnology, Green Chemistry, formulation science and modelling tools.

Our ambition is that by 2030 we will be able to offer women and men around the world increasingly effective, safe cosmetics that respect the environment,” said Nicolas Hieronimus, L’Oréal Deputy Chief Executive Officer, in charge of Divisions.

Strategic partnerships

Much remains to be done in this area. According to the group, 80% of its raw materials are "easily biodegradable", and 59% are renewable, however only 34% are natural or of natural origin. Furthermore, 29% of the ingredients used in L’Oréal formulas were developed according to the principles of Green Chemistry.

To achieve this transition, the group is therefore also building a range of strategic partnerships with universities, start-ups, and its own raw material suppliers.

Ever-greater transparency

At the same time, L’Oréal remains committed to transparency with new initiatives to further improve information on cosmetic ingredients, specifically through the Inside Our Products website that covers nearly 1,000 listed ingredients and is now available across 45 countries in eight languages.

The group also launched, in conjunction with Garnier, an information campaign highlighting the environmental and social impact of its products. The initiative is being deployed around the globe and will gradually encompass all its brands.

And to make it all more tangible, L’Oréal will organize a drive on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube in some 20 countries.