Intelligent Beauty

Meet the brands making major sustainable strides

The world is waking up to the collective need to handle waste effectively – we’re rescuing more and more plastic from landfill, swapping our take-away cups for reusable options and taking a tote bag whenever we shop. We sort through our rubbish and aim to recycle as much as we can but, until fairly recently, beauty was lagging behind when it came to sustainably packaged products. Opulence and ethics felt opposed, with many believing you couldn’t have both but, the tables are turning and more and more brands are now looking for ways to house products responsibly – opting for biodegradable boxes (some of which are laced with seeds!), choosing glass or recyclable bottles and offering refills to limit the quantity destined for landfill.

Powered by Provenance® – an independent software solution that holds brands to their word – our {Cult Conscious} edit helps you shop by your values with confidence. It spotlights products with credible Proof Points – from {Recyclable Packaging} to carbon-offsetting – so you have at-a-glance confirmation that something is up to your standards. Without further ado, these are the names making major sustainable strides…

Meaning ‘in the open air’, {Plenaire} is committed to transparent and relaxed beauty practices that place self-care on par with skin care. Guided by universal skin peeves, their playful (yet considerate!) brand ethos and results-driven formulas have garnered a devoted under-the-radar following. Considerate, you ask? This female-owned brand ensures that every formula is Carbon Neutral – they work with Climate Partner to calculate their Climate Footprint, reduce emissions where possible and offset the rest – and made with 100% recyclable packaging. If sounds right up your street, we recommend you start with their {Rose Jelly Gentle Makeup Remover}—it reveals baby-soft, dewy ‘n’ fresh skin, stat!

Purveyors of affordable, solution-orientated skin care, {Volition} is taking steps to safeguard our planet and reduce waste destined for landfill. As well as being cruelty-free, you’ll also find that most (not yet all) of their products are made with 75%+ Recyclable Packaging – all you need to do is remove the cap and labels and check your local guidelines before you recycle.

LARRY KING HAIR CARE is another brand committed to nurturing nature. With new (and exclusive) shampoos and conditioner housed in refillable glass bottles, the beautiful range doesn’t compromise looks in pursuit of an ethical standpoint. Using glass, aluminium and {FSC certified} card throughout their ‘Wash Cycle’, the trio of styling essentials is boxed using biodegradable card impregnated with wildflower seeds so that if they end up in the wild they should (hopefully) sprout some forget-me-nots.

Pioneers when it comes to respecting the planet, REN CLEAN SKINCARE have gone one step further, by launching the first – hopefully of many – products that’s not only entirely recyclable, but also made from recycled materials. With an innovative metal-free pump, their {Atlantic Kelp and Magnesium Anti-Fatigue Body Wash} is contained in a bottle that’s made with at least 20% recovered ocean plastic, salvaged from seas, beaches and waterways.

Taking pains to care for the planet with minimal packaging, minimal water usage and ethical practices, {NatureLab TOKYO} is the key to clean hair and a clean conscience! Even though their shampoo and conditioners already boast 50%+ recyclable packaging, they’re now encouraging us to buy less and buy better by investing in their refills; double the portion of a bottle but with 85% less plastic than two full-size bottles, these eco-friendly pouches are as good for the earth as they are your purse.


Cult Beauty

Cult Beauty

Writer and expert