Intelligent Beauty

Clean’ your regime with these ethical ranges

Cosmetics with a conscience, these ethical ranges are perfect for those who are striving to ‘clean up’ their act. From sustainable sourcing to game-changing research, meet the brands redefining the future of beauty…


Starting out in Margate, {HAECKELS} seized an opportunity to solve an ever-growing problem. The seaweed washed up on the Thanet coastline was something bemoaned by the local community – left to decay in the sunshine, the seaweed became pretty pungent – which is why HAECKELS applied for one of only two UK licences, to harvest the ‘weed’ and create something special.

Formulated in their Margate laboratory, {HAECKELS} use locally sourced ingredients to create their soul-soothing and skin-healing soaks, salts and scrubs – creating jobs and keeping the 14-mile stretch of Jurassic coast clear of the slippery (smelly!) seaweed that caused so much contention. And their environmental responsibility doesn’t end there… when approached by an airline to supply ‘on board’ products, HAECKELS declined – prioritising the brand’s carbon footprint (and the environmental devastation attributable to the aviation industry) as more crucial to them than a valuable marketing exercise.

Augustinus Bader

Although preeeeetty costly, Augustinus Bader’s {The Cream} harnesses years of pioneering research into cellular regeneration and repair. A leading practitioner in the field, Professor Bader’s understanding of tissue healing – and the ways in which burned or damaged tissue can ‘re-grow’ – has been distilled into two variations of the same, unique formulation: a cream that supports your skin’s framework and helps to prolong your cells’ youthful vitality.

However, not content with cosmetic enhancement, Prof. Bader is firm in his conviction that health care should be accessible to all, which is why the Augustinus Bader Foundation utilises profit from sales of The Cream to benefit those for whom vital procedures would not otherwise be available. The Augustinus Bader Group directs 10% of profits to the Augustinus Bader Foundation; funds which are then dedicated to delivering life-changing medical treatments and support for clinics and doctors in underserved areas of the world – as well as facilitating research into drugs that will disrupt the medical field and help to heal patients globally.

Sana Jardin

The beauty world’s first socially conscious luxury fragrance house (try saying that five times fast… phewf!), {Sana Jardin} is blazing a revolutionary trail – and leaving sublime scents in its wake. Created by philanthropist and entrepreneur Amy Christiansen Si-Ahmed as a vehicle for social change, this brand advocates the economic emancipation of women through ‘The Beyond Sustainability Movement’, aiming to empower all the women it touches – from producer to consumer. Exuding nature’s most exotic aromas and harnessing the healing power of plants and essential oils, these fragrances transport, seduce and support positive change. 

Sana Jardin currently ticks three of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals: to empower women (goal 5), promote sustainable economic growth with full, productive employment (goal 8), and ensure sustainable production practices (goal 12). Since 2015, the brand has worked hand-in-hand with the indigenous Amazigh women in the historic flower-growing region in Morocco, to economically empower the female flower harvesters who hand-pick the petals for each {Sana Jardin} perfume.


Standing for ‘one person’s trash is another’s treasure’, we’ve got a LATTE love for {OPTIAT}. When the brotherly half of the sibling duo behind this gorgeous, Great British brand was given a cafetiere for Christmas, he was struck by the volume of waste. We (on average) consign over 500,000 tonnes of coffee grounds to landfill in the UK every year!! A devastating statistic, and something that brother-and-sister co-founders, William and Anna, sought to do something about. 

Coinciding with the move to banish microbeads, their idea was born: a range of face and body scrubs (which have a conscience). On a quest to help promote a ‘circular economy’, William and Anna strive to source ingredients that would be otherwise discarded and transform them into natural, sustainable skin care – shining a spotlight on ‘sustainability’ and striving to re-shape the (wasteful) beauty industry.


Uganda’s best-kept beauty secret, {LXMI’s} (pronounced “luxe me”) luxurious line-up showcases the country’s nilotica nut – shea’s supercharged sibling that works to heal, nourish and fortify skin.

Made with the finest organic ingredients, ethically sourced and sustainably grown, these stunning products are labours of love – creating well-paid jobs for women and supporting the community to help humanity *and* perfect your complexion. Making it possible to trace the exact origins of each product by way of a number, which is associated with the date of harvest, location, wages paid to the harvesters (and more), you can feel confident that each of the women behind these exquisite creations has earned at least three times the average local wage. 

Pinch of Colour

The world’s first entirely waterless make up range, Pinch of Colour’s beautiful balms and lip pigments were born of the founder’s experiences with water deficiency as a child. Linda Treska knows only too acutely how devastating drought can be, and it was this, coupled with her passion for beauty, that inspired her to set about developing a range of make up must-haves with a cause.

In lieu of water, {Pinch of Colour} uses soothing botanicals, nourishing natural oils and skin-loving fruit butters to create hydrating, non-toxic and self-adjusting pigments that apply and diffuse seamlessly for concentrated colour with a conscience. And what’s more, part of the proceeds from each product bought are donated to supporting water charities and raising precious funds for those deprived of access to this life-giving essential.

Verity Douglas

Verity Douglas

Content Editor

Verity is our Content Editor and a Cult Beauty veteran. Currently on maternity leave, raising Cult Beauty’s honorary ‘word nerd’, Tabitha, she speaks fluent ‘beauty’ and loves nothing more than the marriage of language and lip balm (and cleanser and candles… ad infinitum). Nothing can stop her from quoting Nancy Mitford, treating herself to yet another Bella Freud candle for her desk or buying that pilgrim-esque collared or heavily fringed outfit she’s been eyeing. You can trust her to debunk widespread beauty myths and dispense invaluable advice with ease…