What are the facts?
It makes sense to use the most sensitive products when it comes to taking care of ourselves and our loved ones. The world of personal care and home care can be quite opaque when it comes to identifying product ingredients and providing visibility into manufacturing processes
- Plant-based skincare products do not use animal by-products and are usually produced without animal testing
- However, just because a product is plant-based does not mean it is cruelty free i.e. it has not been tested on animals
- Plant-based products can be especially beneficial as they tend to contain fewer ingredients that cause or aggravate skin conditions
- Plant-based skincare ingredients can include antioxidants, essential fatty acids, essential oils as well as vitamins and minerals
- Aerosols are still not good for the environment. Instead of CFCs – hydrocarbons, nitrous oxide and other greenhouse gases are used.
- Many items marketed as ‘disposable’ are made of plastic. There are many natural compostable alternatives coming to market
- Chlorine bleach released into water bodies react with other minerals to create dangerous toxins which linger for decades
- Plant-based is environment positive unlike animal products which are a key cause of climate change, water depletion and soil erosion
What can a business do?
Businesses can combine care for the consumer and care for the planet including the following
- Make holistic care and kindness desirable. Produce products that care for consumers and the planet
- Incorporate and build in the benefits of sustainability into the appeal of personal care products
- Use fewer more natural plant-based ingredients
- Don’t take short cuts or engage in greenwashing
- Ensure the supply chain is understood and suppliers are transparent in the origin of care and cosmetic components
- Use environmentally friendly packaging and avoid disposable items especially those that contain plastics
- Be transparent on carbon reduction programmes for full cycle product lifecycle and communicate where work us under way even if not complete
What can an individual do?
Here is where you can have a triple win being kind to yourself, animal welfare and the planet and support producers who are getting this right
- Check to make sure a producer not only uses cruelty free ingredients but also cruelty free methods of testing and production
- Look for fewer more natural plant-based ingredients
- Look for transparency around health, carbon and animal programmes to avoid greenwashing
- Choose from producers who have environmentally conscious packaging as well as options for refill and reuse
- Avoid disposable items which contain plastics – use cloths, pasta straws, bamboo pads and wipes and other natural replacements instead
- Avoid bleach based products and look for natural alternatives that get the job done