5 Ways to Reduce Plastic Waste in Your Beauty Routine

It's simpler than you think!

Being plastic-conscious and beauty-obsessed don't seem to go that well together, but it's actually simpler to pick up more sustainable habits than it seems. A small change—like making an offline purchase to avoid unnecessary packaging—still helps cut down on waste! You just have to go the extra mile (and research) to do more. Below, we list five easy switches to consider for reducing your beauty-related plastic waste:

1. Use less disposable items.

Things like cotton pads, toothbrushes, razors, shampoo, and even toothpaste all have their less waste alternatives—all you have to do is make the switch!

While cotton pads aren't exactly made of plastic, they are wrapped in it and we dispose more of these than we realize. To reduce waste, opt for washable cotton pads. For your dental hygiene, try biodegradable bamboo toothbrushes and tooth powder instead of toothpaste tubes. If you want to stop using disposable razors, invest in a metal safety razor. Lastly, for your hair, consider trying shampoo and conditioner bars!


2. Opt to shop offline.

Online shopping is definitely convenient, but we have to admit that all the plastic and bubble wrap that come with every package does pile up. Predictably, the solution for this is to shop more offline and head to the physical store. Make a list of everything you need so you can purchase all of them in one eco-friendly sweep!

3. Opt for products in biodegradable, recyclable, or non-plastic packaging.

If you're serious about eliminating plastic from your vanity, explore brands that package their products more sustainably. Materials like glass, metal, or even wood are plastic-free options worth checking out. Lush's package-free products and recyclable containers are better alternatives to regular plastic as well. Even better, you can look for things with biodegradable packaging like bamboo!

4. Use more refillable products.

More brands now offer the option of having refillable products so beauty girls can reduce their waste and still enjoy new finds. Guerlain and Hourglass' luxurious lipstick formulas both come with refills. Make Up For Ever, MAC, Inglot, and Shu Uemura also sell refill pans for face powders, eyeshadow, pan lipstick, and more, which were originally made for makeup artists' convenience.

For home care products, Human Nature accepts refills for dishwashing liquids and liquid detergents in-store, and Messy Bessy's refill stations in Power Plant Mall, Venice Grand Canal Mall, and Uptown Mall can help you stock up on disinfectant spray, dish cleaner, and linen spray. For skin and body care, Zero Basics has you covered with their one-liter refills of natural deodorant, face toner, and insect repellant. 

5. Shop from brands that recycle their own packaging.

Though we should all be making an effort to be more eco-friendly, it's amazing to see brands taking it upon themselves to explore more sustainable methods of managing their own waste. For example, brands like Innisfree, Human Nature, and V&M Naturals accept empty containers of their products to be reused or upcycled for different purposes. Meanwhile, hair and body care brand Love Beauty and Planet uses recycled plastic for their packaging and they've even partnered with waste disposal companies to collect their empty bottles for recycling.

This story originally appeared on

* Minor edits have been made by the editors.

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