We all have a duty to this beautiful planet to take care of it during the brief moment in history that we exist on it.
Being mindful of our carbon footprint can sometimes conflict with important aspects of our lives. We become aware of how wasteful and unnecessary certain things are, yet we depend on them.
At this point we usually ask ourselves - should I keep doing what I’m doing, or make a small change toward a more eco-friendly skin care routine?
Thankfully it’s easy to make a few changes with your routine that can have a big impact. Follow these few tips on how to have an eco-friendly skin care routine you can feel good about.
⦁ DON’T BE WASTEFUL
Let’s be honest, we probably throw out more of our skin care products than we should. Sometimes we hang on to a product for too long “just in case”, and it goes bad. Other times we buy products we end up not liking and they just sit around or go in the trash.
If you have any skin care products that you aren’t going to use, consider donating them to a local shelter or ask your friends if they want it.
Reducing wastefulness is a simple step we can all take toward an eco-friendly skin care routine.
⦁ THE PACKAGING IS CUTE, BUT IS IT FUNCTIONAL?
I always look at two things when it comes to packaging on skin care products.
You don’t want packaging to be excessive, and it must be functional. Non-functional packaging only leads to more waste.
A product that’s exposed to light and air with poorly-designed transparent packaging can also lead to wasted product. Packaging should be simple but sufficient for the job.
Try to buy products with packaging that’s made of materials that are recyclable in your area. You can also think of new and fun ways to reuse the packaging! Packaging that’s biodegradable is a huge bonus. Some companies may even have a recycling return program.
⦁ BUY CRUELTY FREE + VEGAN
This is probably one of the most impactful things you can do in an effort to have an eco-friendly skin care routine.
This means passing up the snail mucus and honey masks and picking companies that don’t test their products on animals. It also means saying no thanks to other cruel ingredients that hide in products.
Eco-friendly skin care requires that the company you’re buying from has values that align with your own. Choosing companies that refuse to exploit animals is a wonderful decision that benefits so many.
⦁ DON’T BUY DISPOSABLE
Whenever possible, choose non-disposable options.
If you remove your makeup with disposable cotton rounds, try reusable cotton rounds or a MakeupEraser instead.
Of course, this gets complicated when we consider the use of face wipes. Even here we can choose eco-friendly skin care brands like Yes To and Ecocare.
⦁ WORKER EXPLOITATION IS NOT CUTE
Think of the products you’re buying, and the types of companies you’re supporting when you do.
Are they paying the people who make your product a fair wage? What about their working conditions? Try to support smaller companies and companies whose policies you believe in and can verify.
Your dollar is your voice, and if you want to speak up for eco-friendly skin care that means speaking up for humans, too.
⦁ MAKE YOUR ECO-FRIENDLY SKIN CARE PRODUCTS AT HOME
Not everything can be replaced with a homemade recipe. My moisturizer is well-worth the $100 for someone much more competent than I am to make it.
But some products can be made at home sometimes, like face masks! If you’re a chronic masker, try substituting a few masks a week with an at-home recipe.
Scrubs are also easy to make at home. Sugar and oil make a stellar substitute that’s gentle on skin!
You don’t have to make everything in your routine. Just ask yourself if there are any products in your routine that could be replaced by a DIY recipe.
⦁ OUT OF SIGHT OUT OF MIND
Sometimes we forget that when we throw something away, it ends up somewhere. These products and their packaging don’t stop exerting effects on the world once we throw them in the trash or flush them down the drain.
Make sure you’re not buying products that can leak into the environment and cause damage, but also make sure you’re disposing of products and packages appropriately.
Choosing safer ingredients is an important way to reduce your impact on the environment.
⦁ STICK TO THE ESSENTIALS
And at the end of the day, one of the most eco-friendly things we can do is simply buy fewer things as a consumer – to stick to the essentials.
I know it’s tempting to want every new and “it” thing that hits the scene, especially when it comes to acne treatments. I know what it’s like to have serious FOMO, and to want to try new products to see if it’s finally going to be the answer.
But sometimes we spend too much in the quest for clear and flawless skin, so I try to stick to only the essentials. These are my go-to products, and I try to only buy when something really piques my interest.
This not only saves us money in the long run, but it will help to save the environment, too.
But throwing out your whole routine to buy entirely new eco-friendly skin care products isn’t an eco-friendly idea at all. Just take a look at your current routine and ask yourself if you can implement any of these tips and what you need to do to make it happen.
Small change is better than no change. We should each do what we can do to make our lives a little more eco-friendly all around.