Why You Should Care About Ethical Makeup

Who else enjoys doing their makeup? Combine it with skin care and it can become the perfect time to relax and reflect on your day ahead. But have you ever paid attention to the makeup you’re using? 

How much of it is in a plastic container? Do you know what the ingredients are or if they people making it were paid a fair wage? When did you last actually recycle the products you finished?

Just like everything we buy, there are ethical and unethical options available. There are a few things to look out for when shopping for makeup to help you choose well.

Don’t buy fake makeup

Fake makeup can be really tempting in the moment, compared to how expensive branded makeup can be. Who wouldn’t want to save tens of pounds on an eyeshadow palette? 

Here’s the thing, the price cut means that other elements of the makeup have to be sacrificed. This could range from the ingredients to the conditions it was manufactured in. 

So many nasties have been found in fake makeup, a quick Google search will make you never want to risk putting fake makeup on your face ever again. Along with the poor chemical choice, this makeup is often manufactured in unsafe environments both in terms of hygiene and worker safety.

If your makeup costs £5 when it should cost £45, how much do you think the person putting it together is going to be getting paid? 

There are so many reasons why you should avoid fake makeup it’s astounding it’s even an issue in 2020. 

Choose Vegan and Cruelty Free products

Choosing vegan and cruelty free ensures that your makeup is as kind to animals as you can possibly make it, but what do these terms actually mean? Surely if something is vegan then it’s cruelty free right?

We thought so too, but these two labels mean different things when it comes to beauty and skin care. Vegan means that the product contains no animal products, but this doesn’t mean they are cruelty free. This means that in the UK a product can be tested on animals and still legally claim to be ‘vegan’. Cruelty free means that has been free from any animal testing during the creation and production of the product.

To be as ethical as possible for your beauty routine we recommend looking at what’s in your makeup bag, using up what you have and then choosing from a more ethical brand next time. Our current favourites are NYX, Lush and E.L.F. 

Choose products made from recycled materials

This one requires a little bit more work. Instead of choosing a product that contains metal and plastic that’s brand new. Opt for a product that uses recycled packaging. We say this takes more work because this isn’t something that’s making its way to the main chemists just yet. To make this switch you’ll most likely have to look inline and do your own research, but the products are out there!

For example, we’ve been trying an all natural and zero-waste deodorant. Wild comes in completely recycled packaging, and is made from aluminium and recycled plastic products. Making this switch means that we won’t be buying disposable deodorants again, but we had to go online to find this option.

Here’s how to recycle your finished products

Where you can’t afford to switch to a more eco product, you can make sure that your products are recycled.

Several brands are now offering schemes where you can return used products and they’ll recycle them for you. Maybelline now offers a drop off service in supermarkets in the UK to drop off palettes, mascara and more. LUSH have always accepted their products back in store to send them off to be melted down to make more products as part of their ‘closed-loop’ recycling system.

If you prefer to recycle at home you can purchase a box from terracycle. We have to warn you that this is NOT a free option. The smallest box which will hold approximately 86 units is £118.91. If you calculate how long it will take to fill this box then the price becomes a little less shocking, but this is a cost you need to determine if you can handle.

Ultimately, the beauty industry has a long way to go in order to be ethical and eco. By making a switch to a brand that’s going in the right direction we can send the message that wasteful and harmful practices cannot continue into 2021 and beyond.

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