Looking to go greener with your beauty regime but not sure where to start?

Even taking a few small steps can make a big difference.

As consumers, we’ve become more aware about which ingredients go into our products, with more and more people seeking out those with also come in sustainable packaging.

In response to this, brands are increasingly sourcing sustainable or organic raw materials and ensuring their packaging is recyclable or producing re-fills for packaging to minimize their carbon footprint.

Below are some product suggestions that are gentle on your skin & the environment.

Is your Sunscreen Damaging Marine Life?

As the weather warms up, it’s important to pay attention to your choice of sunscreen.

Most sunscreen formulations can have a negative effect on the marine environment because of the chemicals they contain, which are not biodegradable & can be assimilated by corals and other marine organisms. Read more HERE

Since 2013 Avène Sun care products have been developed in line with a strict charter to provide the best protection while minimizing their environmental impact. Avene’s range of sun care products are free from controversial water-soluble filters like oxybenzone, octinoxate, octocrylene and homosalate.

Avène is constantly improving their sun care formulas and packaging to live up to their SKIN PROTECT, Ocean RESPECT promise.

The packaging of the Avène Lotion SPF 50+ is recyclable as it carries the Mobius Loop (triangle arrow).

Not only is Avène sunscreen kinder to the environment, it’s kind to your skin too and can be used on even the most sensitive of skin’s. Avène sunscreens also contain new Sunsitive Triple Combination which consists of extremely broad and phot stable UVA-UVB sun filters, and a unique antioxidant complex for complete protection against attacks from UV-generated free radicals. It is also rich in the soothing & softening iconic Avène Thermal Spring Water.

Eau Thermale Avène SPF 50 Lotion R329.00 (250ml tube) (BUY)

This sunscreen, with its eco-friendly formula, protects & hydrates skin for up to 6 hours thanks to the addition of glycerin. And, when skin is well hydrated, its protected against dryness and remains comfortable and supple. I like that it can be used on both face & body and I was impressed at how quickly the formula penetrated the skin. It’s also water-resistant and leaves no white marks on the skin.

Eau Thermale Avène SPF 50 Spray R319.00 for a 200ml spray (BUY)

This eco-friendly formula has all the benefits of the Lotion mentioned above, just in a spray formula. I’m very impressed with this sunscreen new, convenient and eco-friendly spray. I mean, how often do you lose the cap of your sunscreen? The new OPEN/STOP system on this sunscreen has a retractable spray nozzle that is far more convenient and user-friendly. Simply turn it on and the nozzle appears. Turn it again, and the nozzle disappears.

Both these sunscreens come in recyclable packaging

Change the Way you Wash your Hair & Help Save the Planet.

Did you know that by just using less shampoo (most people use waaaay too much) you can lower your carbon footprint?

A daily routine of shampooing your hair twice, followed by a wash out conditioner uses around 14,222 liters of water annually and has a carbon footprint of around 500kg of carbon dioxide equivalents. However, if you shampoo your hair twice a week (supplement that with a dry shampoo, if needed), you’ll use just 613 liters of water annually, and produce a carbon footprint of 25kg of carbon dioxide equivalents. Read more HERE

It’s also important to remember that a lot of haircare products are made using unnatural ingredients and are packaged in plastic that’s sadly not recyclable.

That’s where Inoar is different. The brands product development is based on 3 pillars: Respect for people; respect for the environment and respect for animals.

Inoar is PETA registered and Vegan & cruelty free brand. The brands top focuses are on quality, effectiveness, safeness and socio-environmental responsibility. The formulas contain no sulphates or parabens.

I LOVE the new Résistance range from the brand that works to rejuvenate and strengthen hair while adding shine. The range is enriched with Bamboo Fiber – rich in protein & selenium. Also included in the formula is Biotin, vitamins that stimulate growth & nourish hair form the inside out.

Benefits of Bamboo for the Hair:

Using a shampoo rich in Bamboo extracts restores a healthy, natural shine to the hair & promotes scalp health. Bamboo extract also promotes moisture retention, ensuring hair has more elasticity (meaning it’s less prone to breakage) & less frizz.

Bamboo is packed with antioxidants and is gentle enough for even sensitive skin & scalps. It can reinvigorate hair lacking in nutrients. The high silica content in bamboo ensures faster, healthier hair growth ensuring stronger, thicker hair.

The Inoar Résistance shampoo & conditioner bottles are recyclable too.

Purchase the Inoar Résistance Bamboo Duo Kit which contains a 250ml shampoo & conditioner for just R590 (BUY)

Ditch the Body Wash with its Excess Packaging.

In our quest to use less plastic packaging, my family & I opt for the DOVE Beauty Cream Bar as it’s one of the only formulas that doesn’t dry our skin out, can be used on both face & body, and, most importantly, comes in minimal cardboard packaging that’s fully recyclable.

People are always surprised when I tell them I use the DOVE Beauty Cream Bar on my body & face (obvs I remove any makeup first). I get the typical, “but Candice, how can you use soap on your face?” I then explain that the DOVE Beauty Cream Bar isn’t a soap bar, rather, it’s a Beauty Bar. While ordinary soaps can strip skin, Dove has mild cleansers that care for skin while cleansing it. The formula contains glycerin and ¼ moisturising cream, so your skin feels soft and hydrated after using it.

My favourite version is the DOVE Pure & Sensitive R12.99 (BUY) that is fragrance free and so gentle, it can even be used on eczema prone skin. The DOVE Pure & Sensitive Beauty Bar contains no sulphates, phthalates or parabens and is hypo-allergenic & dermatologically approved.

I also love that Unilever (the holding company for Dove, Pond’s, Lux, Vaseline, Tresemme and many more brands) launched an industry-leading sustainable living plan which guides the companies approach to product design and redesign. Unilever also runs its own Safety and Environmental Assurance Centre that takes a science-focused look at the environmental impacts of products throughout their life cycle, including when they go down the drain. It’s initiatives like these by big brands that we, as consumers, should support.

Well done Unilever! Read more about this initiative HERE

Using Multi-Tasking Products means less Packaging

Using an all-purpose beauty product not only saves you time & money, it’s better for the environment because you’re purchasing less products, ensuring less waste.

One of my favourite multi-tasking beauties has to be The Everyday Cream by Skin Creamery.

It was the first product I ever tried from the brand and I adore it. The Everyday Cream is a nourishing and hydrating moisturiser that can be used on body & face. The formulation uses certified organic ingredients, is gentle enough for all skin types to use, absorbs easily and is hypoallergenic. It contains coconut oil that regenerates and rejuvenates skin; Baobab Oil to improve skin’s elasticity, and jojoba oil that has great anti-microbial properties – great for keeping spots, blackheads & acne breakouts at bay.

I love that this delectable moisturiser is packaged in glass, and that you can choose between two sizes: 100ml jar for R248 (BUY) or a 200ml bottle for R385 (BUY)

Best of all? You can now buy a 200ml refill for just costs just R341 (BUY)

Choose Makeup that’s Kinder to the Environment

It’s a REAL challenge finding makeup products that are organic, locally produced, environmentally friendly, have recyclable packaging and contain ingredients that are kind to the skin.

That’s why I got so excited when I found the Esse Skincare Foundation R595 (BUY)

Foundation doesn’t get more natural than this – certified organic by Eco-Cert (the gold standard of international certification), using this foundation ensures you’re not polluting your skin with any toxins. The formula is also Vegan & cruelty free.

Made with mineral pigments and an added SPF30 for protection, the Esse Foundation works to cover imperfections while supporting a healthy skin biome, thanks to the addition of probiotics in the formula.

In skincare, probiotics are proven to strengthen barrier function & contribute to a healthy skin microbiome. This formula is ideal for sensitive skin types as it contains no fragrance and strengthens the skin while calming any redness or inflammation.

Antioxidants have been added to the SPF to protect skin from pollutants & free radicals. FYI, antioxidants serve to enhance the efficacy of a sunscreen.

You can layer this formula to achieve light to medium coverage with a natural, illuminating finish. I like how it leaves the skin with a sheer, radiant veil of coverage. The Esse foundation is available in 10 shades and there’s a perfect colour match for every skin tone.

The outer & product packaging is also recyclable.

Be Aware of ‘Greenwashing’

Image Source

Greenwashing is rampant in the beauty industry. It’s a form of marketing spin in which green PR & green marketing are deceptively used to persuade the public that an organizations products, aims & policies are environmentally friendly, and therefore ‘better’. Source: Wikipedia.

Familiarize yourself with the Symbols associated with Animal Testing and Recycling Packaging

Know which ingredients are harmful and should be avoided like parabens, plastic micro-beads (thankfully now banned in most countries), phthalates and which have been flagged as possible skin irritants, carcinogens or endocrine disruptors, or are harmful to the environment. Learn more HERE.

Remember to Recycle your Empties.

Look for the arrowed triangle that means a product is recyclable but be aware that their caps may not be. Cosmetic packaging with mixed materials like plastic & metals are notoriously difficult to recycle.

Do you have any tips on how to go greener with your beauty products?

If so, I’d love you to share them in the comments section below.


What a fantastic post!

Thanks so much! Glad you enjoyed it & found the info useful 🙂

I’ve started using shampoo bars.

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