Packaging Is Important

January 23, 2018

I'm interested to know how you choose brands and products you want to try and use? Do you choose based on ingredients? Reviews? Because the product looks beautiful? Because you think it may work wonders for your skin? Because your favourite blogger recommends it?

Do you ever consider the packaging and the materials your beauty products are made of? Are they recyclable? Can you reuse them?
Beauty Products Packaging Is Important. Glass, aluminium, plastic, bamboo, paper.
 Personally I'm very much into packaging. First are the ingredients and the philosophy of the brand, and then it is definitely the packaging and materials. If you do not know, we bloggers are so fortunate that we are kindly gifted a number of products and we probably all have too many products, definitely more than any normal person would need. With that in mind, I always try and think if I really need that new product in my life and I rather say no, than to accumulate products that would just sit on shelves and in my fridge. Not that I'm perfect but I'm very happy with the amount I have (which is actually rather small in comparison to some other bloggers) and don't feel overwhelmed by it. So since I try a lot of products I'm quite conscious of the packaging. More products mean more waste and if I can get a similar product in a better packaging then I'm like no thank you. I'm one of those people who annoys brands if they would consider having a more eco-friendly packaging materials. We consumers have a massive influence on the market so why not speak about the important things in life, which eco-friendly packaging most definitely is. Everything that concerns environment is an important topic to discuss and since my blog is mainly about beauty products, I feel I have to talk about this.

So what is my favourite packaging material? Glass packaging and aluminium lids. So glass and metal.
Glass, paper, aluminium, metal packaging. Eco-friendly. Organic and natural products.Glass. Recyclable, eco-friendly packaging.
Violet Miron Glass packaging, organic and natural products
Glass is a sustainable, recyclable material, made from sand, soda ash, limestone and “cullet,” the industry term for furnace-ready recycled glass. Personally I love Miron Violet Glass the most. Not only is it recyclable but it also preserves and adds vitality and energy to the contents inside. Miron glass blocks all harmful rays from the light spectrum and therefore the products stay fresher longer, and the glass also preserves the dynamic energy of what is stored inside. In terms of preserving the products, brown glass is better than clear, but you can recycle or upcycle all of them.
Glass packaging, aluminium lids. Eco-friendly packaging.
Metal. And by metal I'm thinking of aluminium. It can be recycled again and again and supposedly almost 75% of metal packaging is recycled in Europe, making it the most recycled packaging. (source) That's one of the reasons why I love my 24Bottles stainless steel water bottle. One of the most known beauty brands that uses metal packaging is a makeup brand Kjaer Weis and that's not all, they also offer refills. Not only eco-friendly but also oh so beautiful. Here I also have to mention Earthwise Beauty who uses aluminium lids. Lani, Meow Meow Tweet and S.W. Basics as well. My beloved Gaia Creams were also using glass jars & bottles with aluminium lids.

Next is biodegradable packaging made from waste paper. Meow Meow Tweet's deodorant sticks come in that sort of packaging and I also had a lip balm from another brand in such biodegradable packaging. Even better that "just" a packaging made from recycled paper, is the one that is infused with wildflower seeds. Mel Millis' external packaging is made like that (and they use Miron glass bottles with plastic lids) and all Elate Clean Cosmetics' pressed powder products come in seed paper + they also use bamboo packaging. I also love that Boxwalla's boxes are made from post-consumer paper!
Bamboo packaging, makeup beauty products
Bamboo packaging. As you may know bamboo is a sustainable material because it is grown in abundance in many parts of the world, it grows quickly and is self-regenerating. Plus it doesn't need any pesticide to grow well. I remember living in this apartment where my neighbours had bamboo and it grew like crazy, especially after it rained. Bamboo sure sounds like an amazing option, but is it really that sustainable and eco-friendly as we may think? It depends. Bamboo is usually used as an alternative material to plastic, which I'm all for. First of all I adore my bamboo toothbrush! I think that when it comes to makeup it is also a very good choice and is definitely way, WAY better than plastic (can't even compare the two actually). If the brands also offer refills then that's perfect. As mentioned, Elate offers that and Zao Makeup as well. I still think that metal packaging for makeup is better (in terms of being more eco-friendly) but bamboo is the next best thing, cause sadly plastic is a standard when it comes to makeup. Oh and makeup can be also packaged in paper, not to mention glass as Gressa is doing. PHB Ethical Beauty and 100% Pure use paper packaging for some of their products.

I have nothing bad to say about bamboo but what about bamboo packaging for skincare? The most known brand that uses bamboo packaging is Hawaiian brand Mahalo. They store their products in jars made of glass which are then covered with/in bamboo. But I can toss away my used up bamboo toothbrush into a compost pile but I don't see myself doing that with a glass & bamboo jar. But then I also can't throw this kind of packaging into a (glass) recycling bin. So to me this combination isn't as eco-friendly as one might think but then at least the jars are glass and not plastic. Or am I just missing something? Perhaps you could try breaking them apart, if that's even possible. There are better options and I definitely prefer just straight up glass jars and bottles, without any bamboo attached to it.

Plant-based biodegradable plastic or bioplastic, made from plant biomass, such as corn or sugarcane. Supposedly this kind of plastic is biodegradable and should not contain any synthetic materials but I'm still very vary & iffy of it. Plus I think you would have to have a lot of plants to make it, which in the end may not even be that eco-friendly and good on the environment. And this bioplastic is not the same as biodegradable plastic, which is still made out of plastic. No to plastic of any kind. With that said the plastic resin for Tata Harper's tubes is derived from corn, which means it is made from a renewable resource instead of petroleum, which I have to say I applaud very much.
Plastic packaging
Plastic. Yuck. Nuff said. As you know, I also use and have plastic in my life, sadly I don't see myself being able to live without it, at least not just yet. I can live, happily live, with an oil in a glass bottle with an aluminium lid but we consumers are very fussy, so the majority of brands (still) use plastic lids. Here I'm thinking of pumps, pipettes and droppers. BUT at least they use glass bottles and not plastic! The glass here is definitely half full and not half empty. Sure you could argue that plastic is recyclable but how much of it is really recycled?? And also not every plastic can be recycled, not to mention that it can be toxic and harmful. For example, I have this toner which I ordered online and wrongly assumed that it is bottled in clear glass. When it arrived I was sadly disappointed because it was packaged in plastic. Not just any plastic, but with a sign "PET 1" which is like the worst kind of plastic there can be and is pretty much always a "single-use" or disposable plastic. So no, not recyclable. Plus yuck! This kind of plastic can leak some nasty chemicals into a product. Why would I want to use that? You know I'm not into chemicals and when I want to try a new product which in fact is (that toner) 100% organic but then the packaging was this after thought cheap plastic mess?! I immediately poured it into an old toner glass bottle but I'm still a bit iffy about it. I'm not actually that extreme every time and I just leave it but sometimes I simply can't.

There are many ways of making packaging pretty, beautiful, chic, minimalistic, luxurious and in this day and age the most gorgeous ingredients/products packaged in a single-use plastic packaging can simply put just f*ck off.

For the end I also want to say, is outer or external packaging of the products really necessary? What is it made of? What about the use of soy ink? The one thing that also urks me is when a brand sends me one of their products and the box is like HUGE! Really? You really need a packaging that big for a product that I can fit into my pocket?

I will say it again, I'm in NO way perfect but I do try to choose more consciously and be more mindful of my choices. I know that sometimes it's hard, even impossible to resist a brand and their products but in that case perhaps pick only one product instead of five. Do you really need them? Use less, love more, as Beauty Heroes say. If you can, then choose eco-friendly and recyclable packaging and then of course also recycle. There is so much more that I want and need to say, but I will leave this post as it is and perhaps in the future do an update when I will know more about this topic. There is so much more to mention and to learn and if you have anything to add I would love to chat more about it, either in the comments or privately via email.

I'm no expert so if you want to live even more low waste life then I highly suggest following blogs dedicated to zero waste style, where you will find more amazing tips and tricks. Following people who live a zero waste life, who care for the environment and all that good stuff is especially a wonderful thing to do on Instagram or Facebook. That way you're constantly reminded of all the (plastic) s*it we keep producing.

One other thing, the last one I promise! IT IS PERFECTLY OKAY if you start slow. You don't have to change everything over night. You will only feel overwhelmed and dishartened and possibly you will want to stop asap. Baby steps are better than no steps.

Wishing you a lovely day!

With love,

Jana xx


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