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Ethical

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Most of us don't think twice about plastic in our make-up and beauty regime. Yet once it's pointed out to us, it's completely unavoidable; plastic is EVERYWHERE in beauty.

From eyeshadow palettes to shampoo bottles, plastic toothbrushes which take over 400 years to decompose, foundation which isn't ethically sourced to packaging which could easily be replaced with recyclable equivalents; beauty is problematic when it comes to our environment.

What do we mean by sustainable cosmetics? Essentially; fair wages for workers, recyclable and biodegradable packaging, ethically sourced and natural, cruelty-free ingredients, renewable resources. In summary: doing no harm to the planet, other people or animals in the process.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Solid Waste Management Program (@omsarswmp) on

Sounds great, doesn't it? So many of us tune out when we hear things about the environment; it all just seems overwhelmingly impossible to face it head-on.

Yet swapping your beauty routine for a greener option is SO easy, even small changes have large repercussions. We each must think individually about our own actions, rather than the planet as a whole.

Here are our top tips for reducing your carbon footprint through your beauty regimen…IT'S VITAL that we embrace the change.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by The Humble Co. #HumbleBrush (@thehumble.co) on

1. Swap plastic toothbrushes for bamboo counterparts.

Toothbrushes are constantly bought and thrown away, without a single thought about where it goes after our bins are emptied. Basically, it heads to landfill, where plastic takes up to 1000 years to break down. Incredible, isn't it?

Changing your toothbrush for a bamboo one can HUGELY reduce the harm caused by your oral hygiene.

The Humble Co. sell great ones, check out their website here. You can also pop into your nearest Holland and Barrett health store. Pair it with Fig + Yarrow Cornmint Lavender Tooth Powder, which comes in little recyclable/reusable glass bottle and is created with white clay, sea salt, baking soda, and antibacterial essential oils.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by The Humble Co. #HumbleBrush (@thehumble.co) on

2. Recycle your empty make-up containers in stores now

Since the creation of plastics, humans have made 8.3 billion metric tonnes of it. Of that amount, an incredible 6.3 billion metric tonnes have already been thrown out and 91 percent of that waste has NOT been recycled. It makes a lot of sense now why governments and communities are raising support for the banning of single-use plastics…

Make sure that your plastic bottles and empty make-up sets are recycled properly; companies such as Lush, The Body Shop and L'Occitane have unreal reward systems for returning your plastic packaging to the stores.

More stores are committed to limiting their impact on the environment. L'Occitane's new initiative with TerraCycle enables the recycling of beauty products from any brand. TerraCycle is a collection and recycling programme which specialises in difficult-to-recycle packaging, so they know their stuff.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by TerraCycle (@terracycle) on

Any L'Occitane customers can recycle their empties at any store now. Thirty-five percent of Lush products are sold 'naked' (with no packaging), so zero-waste washing is absolutely possible. Their products sold in pots and bottles are 100 percent post-consumer plastic. 

Save and return five clean, black pots to any local Lush store for a free face mask; you give back and you get in return. 

3. Know your brands, and choose ones who are HONEST about where their ingredients and packaging come from.

It's not difficult to be totally aware of what you're consuming and if it's harming anyone else. Send Instagram DMs or email the company to ask if the information isn't readily available on their packaging or websites. Hint: if the information is hard to find, it's probably NOT a good company to go with.

There are so many incredible natural, cruelty free and ethical make-up brands around now; Bia Beauty is an up-and-coming Irish brand we adore. Beauty Without Cruelty products for sensitive skin are considered among the best on the market. 

Lush are another company who partner with the Ocean Legacy Foundation to use recovered plastic from the ocean as material.

Christopher Davis, who is The Body Shop's international director of campaigns and corporate responsibility, said the brand is undertaking a "comprehensive review" of sustainable packaging choices. They are hoping to remove fossil fuels from 70 percent of its product packaging by 2020.

"Our long-term vision is that packaging will not harm people or the environment and can be repurposed," says Davis. "All our solutions need to be truly sustainable."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by The Body Shop Official (@thebodyshop) on

4. Get smart about your container use.

Why not try and use bars of shampoo rather than bottles? Numerous shops now have methods of bringing your own plastic bottles which have been recycled to collect any goods from the store, so they don't waste packaging.

Reuse empty make-up plastic packaging for something more creative. You can also try and use powdered deodorant or bars of soap instead of the spray-cans. For pump-bottles, you should generally throw away the pump before recycling as the metal springs inside can’t be recycled.

Once part of it isn't recyclable, it nearly always ends up in landfill or the sea, and we don't want that. Oh, and GET A METAL STRAW right this minute.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Axiology (@axiology_beauty) on

Terracycle has a partnership with Bausch & Lomb which aims to recycle contacts, blister packs, and the top foil from contact lenses, if you wear glasses. Terracycle also have an incredible partnership with Garnier, which recycles ANY hair care, skin care, and cosmetics packaging. 

5. Use recyclable make-up remover pads or a face cloth instead of wipes.

 According to the FDA, wipes are made from an amalgamation of ingredients such as polyester, polypropylene, cotton, wood pulp, and rayon fibres. Many of these are not biodegradable, but some wipes are compostable, such as RMS Beauty and Yes To.

We recommend the MakeUp Eraser remover cloths, they're absolutely life-changing. Buy them on iHerb at a great price, and never look back. The Cleanse Off Mit is another wonderful option; all machine-washable.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by The Original MakeUp Eraser (@makeuperaser) on

6. Eco-brushes

Pretty much every make-up brush is made from plastic, but we've discovered some alternatives. EcoTools brushes are made from recycled bamboo, recycled aluminium, and some recycled plastic: GORGE.

Morphe also has a beautiful 18-piece vegan brush set that we have our eyes firmly set on. ZOEVA do bamboo brush sets via Beauty Bay's website, for a heftier price.

In terms of hair brushes, try the WetBrush Go Green Detangler Brush, which is made of plant starch and designed to break down within five years.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by EcoTools (@ecotools) on

7. Eco-lipstick

AXIOLOGY is your go-to for non-toxic lipstick. They value a holistic, vegan lifestyle and are 100 percent transparent about where their ingredients come from. The brand is pretty expensive if you're a student or on a lower wage, but it's excellent quality and totally ethical. Their boxes are sourced by Bali women who recycle local waste into paper.

The founder of AXIOLOGY, Ericka Rodriguez, is proud to use no palm oil or palm oil derivatives in their goods; "Palm oil is causing widespread deforestation and causing the extinction of many animal species. We donate to the Orangutan Foundation International to help the orangutans during this crisis."

Once again, go for plastic-free lipstick holders or lip liners if possible, or at least recyclable options. Check out earth911.com to find out about your plastic bottles and recycling options. Over 40 percent of the plastic we use is in the form of packaging, so it's time to change.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Axiology (@axiology_beauty) on

8. Ditch those plastic disposable razors ASAP

Girlos who shave, it's time to get a razor you can use again and again. Throwing away constant disposable plastic razors causes phenomenal harm to the environment, and we are so much better than that, ain't we? The EPA estimates 2 BILLION razors are thrown away each year….wow.

You can find a reusable, stainless steel razor in any major retailer, and can get reusable blades for cheap. It's cost-effective and eco-friendly beauty, let's DO IT. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Kirsty (@kirstyf84) on

9. Invest in double-duty products

Do you really need sun-cream AND foundation AND highlighter AND concealer AND moisturiser AND primer AND bronzer AND setting spray AND powder? We're guessing not.

Try choosing products which double-duty; like SPF BB creams, lip primers which have moisturising properties, tinted moisturisers etc. Minimise as much as you can, and really think about what you need versus what you want.

10. Tampons

Disposable tampon applicators are one of the BIGGEST forms of ocean plastic pollution. Why not try switching to applicator-less tampons, or invest in a menstrual cup. The cups last for up to 10 years, producing far less waste than disposable menstrual products, and avoid the chemicals present in tampons.

They also save you a lot of money over time, and are becoming far more popular as more women in Ireland try them out. In terms of applicator-free tampons, try Emerita.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Environmental Working Group (@environmentalworkinggroup) on

Finally: Campaign for change.

Contact product manufacturers, give feedback to brands and express your wish that plastic they use is recyclable. Annoy them if you must; consumer pressure makes a significant difference. You can make the change.

It's worth a shot, lobby your local TDs so we can improve environmental laws. Email your favourite make-up brands, show your support for eco-friendly and ethical companies especially.

You can do it gals, a little change goes a long way.

Feature image: eco warrior princess

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If you're searching for some serious style on a budget, but don't want to contribute to the growing environmental and ethical problems related to fast fashion, then we have the perfect sustainable, ethical fashion event for you.

Designers in the City is an Irish organisation which exists to empower local brands, to enable burgeoning talent to find their platform and to encourage environmentally friendly fashion.

Special pop up store events take place in quirky and sociable locations for the public to have a whole other type of shopping experience.

Now they're bringing their pop up shop to the Chelsea Drugstore this February, and we cannot WAIT:

On February 4 at 5pm, the event launches at the gorgeous and elegant location, allowing local designers and their work to be seen and appreciated by Dubliners.

Their venues act as partners for their creativity, and facilitate the great atmosphere, unique designers and local artists while giving you a great day out.

Designers in the City have also carried out exclusive interviews with fashionistas like Katrina McElroy from Slow Fashion Salon and Claire Prouvost, who educate the viewer about fast fashion, as well as Aga Kuchminster. who creates vegan face cream.

From vegan beauty products, stunning jewellery and all kinds of fashion and styles, the Designers in the City event is definitely not to be missed. 

Fashion is the SECOND most polluting industry after oil, according to the World Economic Forum. There are also $46.7 BILLION worth of clothes in UK closets, and it takes a shocking 2,700 litres of water to make just one t-shirt.

The textile industry is also the second biggest water polluter, which has hugely damaging effects worldwide. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by  (@designers_in_the_city) on

We need to start making some vital changes to how we wear, buy, and produce fashion. Educating ourselves and shopping as events like Designers in the City's creation is the ideal place to start.

For more information on the unique event, check out their Instagram page, Twitter, or visit Eventbrite for tickets.

The Chelsea Drugstore is located on 25 South Great Georges Street, Dublin 2.

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Choosing to take the cruelty-free route in your beauty endeavours isn’t as easy as most of us would hope.

Like anything worthwhile, it takes time, research and dedication.

And even after educating yourself on the brands which opt for the ethical route and choose not to test on animals, you may find it takes some time to replenish your beauty collection.

Thankfully, this isn’t the case when it comes to our favourite ethical hair care range.

 

The perfect essentials#manentailbeauty

A post shared by Mane 'n Tail Beauty (@manentailbeauty) on

It may have originated in the United States, but Mane ‘n Tail, which is one of the world’s most celebrated cruelty-free ranges, is now available in your local Dunnes Stores, which means making the leap has never been easier.

But, what else sets the brand apart aside from their ethical approach?

Well, let's see; there's the retro packaging which gives more than a passing nod to the aesthetic of the 70s, the stunning scent we can't get enough of, and the unique formula which contains a blend of essential oils and a combination of silk proteins which leaves hair longer, fuller. stronger and healthier.

Oh, and then there's the fact that the product was originally created for horses. We know, talk about your talking points.

 

Our new Color Protect formula leaves your hair vibrant much longer and is the perfect holiday stocking stuffer

A post shared by Mane 'n Tail Beauty (@manentailbeauty) on

And with the recent creation of two brand-new products, we’re even more enamoured.

With two years development behind them, Mane 'n Tail's new Color Protect Shampoo and Conditioner is a godsend for anyone who loathes seeing the vibrancy of their locks diminish with every wash.

If you're going cruelty-free, want a formula so gentle it can be used on everyone from the salon to the stable, and still haven't yet settled on a hair range, need we say any more?

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