Makeup is a fashion and beauty staple that’s infiltrated every part of society. Men and women love the look and have made careers out of stylish and successful makeup application, but the trendy accessory comes at a cost.
Makeup is not always good for the environment for a number of reasons. The packaging uses a lot of plastic and other materials that are hard to recycle, the glitter components and product microbeads don’t decompose over time once they’ve been used or thrown away and frequently end up in rivers or other ecosystems that can’t handle the introduction of aggressive new elements, and people frequently buy makeup, realize they can’t or won’t use it, and then toss it, creating a waste of resources and adding more product to landfills worldwide.
How can we take this trendy yet troublesome staple and make it better for the environment while still retaining the quality of the products we know and love? The answer is zero waste makeup.
The New Makeup Trend that’s Single-Handedly Improving the Environment
At its core, zero waste is a philosophy that encourages recycling, minimizing waste, reducing consumption, and trying to find sustainable, reusable, and environmentally-friendly replacements for regularly used items. The four golden R’s of a zero-waste lifestyle are: Refuse, Reuse, Recycle, and Repurpose.
From sunscreen to household cleaners, lotion, perfume, detergents, soaps, toothpaste, we all use a ton of products in our daily life that uses a lot of plastic and environment unfriendly materials. Trying to live a zero-waste lifestyle encourages becoming more conscious about the purchasing choices that you make, including your makeup. By purchasing zero waste solutions, you can take advantage of natural products and provide a green alternative to the products you know and love!
Best Zero Waste Makeup Products
Reusable Makeup Pads
- Soft, Gentle, And Strong: Our super soft, reusable cotton pads for face and eye makeup removal are specifically designed for the incredibly delicate skin around your eyes. Our manufacturing standards and focus on tight perimeter stitching ensure that our eye makeup remover pads will outlast, and outperform every other product on the market.
- Totally Hassle Free: What’s the point in having reusable face pads if they’re not easy and convenient to use and wash? Our choice to include two bags (one for clean pads, and one for the washer / dryer) was to make going green as easy as possible. You can use anything with these pads, from plain old water, to makeup remover, and micellar water (without leaking through to the other side of our extra thick pads)
- Two Tone Microfiber: Why microfiber? Our makeup remover cloths reusable microfiber technology is exponentially finer than cotton fibers. This means a deep, gentle cleaning with just water (although you can absolutely use micellar water or makeup remover if you still prefer). You can use our black reusable cotton pads when you are removing dark makeup and the light blue or white side with toner or moisturizer.
The first step to successfully implementing zero waste products into your life is to begin by swapping out your tools. These reusable makeup pads replace your cotton rounds or cotton balls that you might have used to apply toner, serums, or other products. They’re easily washable and are a very clean and green way to cut down on daily wastefulness. They also absorb less product than a cotton pad does, meaning you’re extending the life of your makeup solutions as well as the tools you use to apply them!
Tinted Moisturizer and SPF Sunscreen
- ALL-NATURAL SUN PROTECTION – Performance-driven face and body sun protection lasts up to 80 minutes and does not run or sting your eyes. Comes in a reusable, recyclable, plastic-free tin.
- DAILY USE FOR ALL AGES – With a medium-tint that matches all skin tones, our ultra-moisturizing formula gives skin a healthy glow and is gentle enough for kids
- CERTIFIED ORGANIC NATURAL MINERAL SUNSCREEN – Soy, gluten and nut free, contains no synthetic chemicals and packed with nourishing antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, so your skin stays protected long after environmental exposure
This tin of moisturizer is a daily staple and a great zero waste swap that replaces your moisturizer, facial lotion, and sunscreen all in one! The tin the product arrives in is completely recyclable, and the paper packaging that describes the product and ingredients is recyclable as well. The moisturizer and sunscreen are reef safe and made with all-natural ingredients to provide the ultimate eco-friendly experience you’ll want to use every single day.
All Natural Floss
- FLOSS PICKS WITH A GOOD CONSCIENCE - These flossers and dental picks from The Humble Co. are brought to you by dentists who care about your health, our environment and children in need of oral care products. Our eco-friendly products help fund oral health projects for children around the world. Go Humble Give Smiles!
- FLOSS WITH LESS PLASTIC - Our dental floss picks include plant-based materials to minimize the stress on our environment while providing a first-class experience! 50psc per pack, 200 count in total.
- MAKE FLOSSING A PIECE OF CAKE - The double threading ensures that food debris is effectively removed whilst the shape of the pick promotes easy access to those hard-to-reach places. These vegan, cruelty-free dental picks also promote gum health and clean breath.
Having a healthy smile is essential to your beauty experience, and these plant-based floss picks definitely do the trick. Made entirely from compostable and recyclable plant materials, the charcoal and mint floss threads clean your teeth and freshen your mouth in one swipe, allowing for healthy and environmentally friendly dental hygiene that will certainly enhance your already stunning smile.
- EASY REFILL FOR YOUR CAKE MASCARA TIN: Our Cake Mascara refill fits perfectly into your Besame Cosmetics Cake Mascara Tin, making it a sustainable option that’s good for the environment. Its water-activated formula is made from natural wax that bends to your skin and lashes so it doesn’t flake, peel, or clump.
- 3-IN-1 CLASSIC EYE MAKEUP: Not only is it meant to be a mascara, it can also be used as an eyeliner or eyebrow fill! This multi-use product is so convenient, you can carry it around in your handbag for on-the-go touch-ups.
- LONG-LASTING AND WATER-RESISTANT: Your eye makeup is sure to last all day long with our Cake Mascara. After all, the reason why this product was a favorite among the leading stars in the early days of cinema is that it stayed in place even under hot, unforgiving stage lights without smudging!
An essential swap, mascara is often one of the most plastic unfriendly makeup products in your wardrobe. Mascara tubes often come with excessive or unnecessary packaging that wastes resources and is hard if not impossible to recycle. The product to packaging ratio is heavily skewed and a huge waste. Turning to these mascara refills is a great way to reduce your impact on the environment. Buy a reusable eyelash wand and use this compact tin to store your mascara. It works so well that Hollywood stars swear by it, and it’s easy to recycle the remains when you’re done.
- NATURAL, BLUSHING CHEEKS: Our Cream Rouge gives your cheeks a natural, weightless glow with the perfect pop of color for any occasion.
- BLENDS WITH ANY SKIN TONE: We’ve created our Cream Rouge in popular shades from the 1930’s that were worn by women of all colors, so you can walk in confidence that any color you choose will look great on you!
- PERFECT FOR LIPS & CHEEKS: Packaged in a stunning vintage-style tin that’s perfect for subtle touch ups on the go, you can use our Cream Rouge for perfect lip and blush color.
From the same company that offered the Bésame mascara tin, this cheek tint in a tin offers the same advantages as its cousin mascara. Easy to access and use without having to wade through extra and unnecessary packaging, the cheek tin can be reused for other storage or recycled once empty. You can also use this cheek tint as blush, eyeshadow, and lip color, creating a three in one zero waste product that reduces the amount of makeup you purchase and the packaging you use.
- 500 natural sticks per box. Payless packaging, save on product! Extra pack size for smart shopping
- Twice more natural cotton on the stick tips! Great for ears, travel, babies or everyday cleaning 🙂
- 100% ecofriendly alternative. Made from renewable bamboo wood and top quality cotton. Recyclable pack
Useful for cleaning up makeup looks or applying other products with precision, cotton swabs are definitely essential for your bathroom and makeup space. These bamboo-based cotton swaps mean that they’re gentle to produce and easy to compost once you’re done using them, so you’ll never have to regret going through ten swabs to fix your eyeliner every again.
Facial Bar Soap
- MADE WITH ORGANIC SKIN LOVING OILS: Organic Unrefined Shea Butter, Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Organic Sunflower Oil, Organic Sustainable Palm Oil and Organic Castor Oil.
- FOR ALL SKIN TYPES. Use as a face soap, body soap or shaving soap. For men, women and teens. Can be used to help with Acne, Eczema and Psoriasis
- NATURALLY SCENTED With Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils Of Lemongrass, Peppermint and Eucalyptus
Many people might wrongly assume that bar soap is only good for washing your hands, but lately, bar soap has been taking over the makeup industry as a good facial wash tool as well. The soaps contain all kinds of natural additives that benefit your skin, like activated charcoal or tea tree oil, and require none of the excessive plastic and silicone that usually encase facial soaps. As an extra incentive, you also get more product with these bars because all the soap is accessible right away, not hidden away inside giant soap containers.
- Get every last drop out of your cosmetic, grocery, and personal care items
- Fits into virtually any bottle, container, or receptacle with narrow opening
- BPA-Free, Made in the USA
This tool is a great way to maximize product efficiency with the products you already own. If you’re just starting the zero waste lifestyle and still have a lot of plastic heavy products you’re phasing out, this spatula will be your saving grace. Use it to scrape out the very last of your products to make sure you’re not wasting anything.
Rejuvenating Eye Cream
- Fight Wrinkles, Crows Feet, Puffiness and Under Eye Bags. Natural anti aging night cream balm nourishes your skin for a healthier, softer, glowing complexion.
- Finally, An Anti Aging Wrinkle Cream That’s Good For Your Skin. Our ingredients are proven to plump skin cells, boost healthy circulation, fight wrinkles and premature aging, reduce puffy bags under eyes and give softer, more supple skin.
- The Best Under Eye Cream Needs the Best Ingredients. Super robust buttery formula includes skin super foods Jojoba Oil, Calendula Oil, Sunflower Oil, Raw Honey, Argan Oil, Coconut Oil, Rosemary Extract and more.
This powerful eye cream can take years off your life in just one night. It works quickly to erase wrinkles and dark spots while brightening and freshening your eyes overall. It also comes in a handy glass jar that can be recycled or used for decoration or even to store more eye cream.
No matter how you begin your journey to zero waste, remember that every step forward is a good one! Keep reading our blog for more tips and tricks on how to successfully and reliably implement zero waste and other helpful makeup tips into your routines!