Posts with term L'Oreal X

Is sustainability scalable for beauty brands?

Though French beauty company L’Occitane Group dates its sustainability efforts back to 1976 when founder Olivier Baussan started the namesake brand, the firm’s more recent efforts speak to a shift in modern consumer values.   “Our take has evolved as the ways we all consume has changed and the way we create waste has changed,” said Ashley Arbuckle, L’Occitane Group vp of marketing and wholesale. “The things we were doing in 1976 are not enough anymore.”   Baussan may have conceived L’Occitane to support local farmers and traditional farming methods, but today its sustainability exercises extend to biodiversity and most significantly to a reduction of plastic. In February, L’Occitane Group announced its plans to become fully sustainable by 2025 by working with sustainable plastic provider Loop Industries. Prior to this announcement, only 30% of L’Occitane’s products were made with recycled plastic and it was exclusive to darker-colored product, like its Aromachologie hair-care collection — not its hero body lotion lines. L’Occitane’s in-store recycling capabilities extended to just 30% of its 1,500-plus stores worldwide.   “In the beauty industry, plastic is considered the gold standard. It is one of the materials that’s easiest to work with and it is affordable, but it’s a problem,” said Arbuckle.   According to market research firm Euromonitor International, global consumer demand for plastics exceeded 2.2 trillion units in 2018, and the beauty industry specifically accounted for nearly 153 billion units of that larger pie. What’s even more telling is that 40% of those products were packaged with single-use plastic, meaning that it was unable to be recycled and ultimately ended up in a landfill. While beauty giants like L’Occitane, L’Oréal Group and Unilever are responding to the environmental problem with vigor, the questions around sustainable alternatives remains.   “I’ve been doing this for 17 years, and everyone has always agreed that garbage is a problem, but in the past 24 months, that’s moved from a problem to a crisis,” said Tom Szaky, CEO and founder of TerraCycle, who works with all of the aforementioned conglomerates on recycling efforts, as well as Procter & Gamble and Estée Lauder Companies. Within beauty, the company has projects with 51 partners. He credits that seismic shift in behavior among both consumers and brands to the popularity of David Attenborough’s visceral nature documentary “Blue Water II.” Szaky estimates that big corporations’ recycling investments typically range in the seven figures.   Companies are responding because they see the opportunity to more deeply connect with beauty customers, he said, and recent sustainable moves can also be credited as a prevention tactic, considering Canada, for one, announced in June that it is banning single-use plastic items by 2021. Even compostable efforts, such as those favored by L’Oréal’s Seed Phytonutrients, can be viewed as problematic, because compostable packaging is better suited for developing countries where the only alternative option is simply to litter — U.K.-based retailer  Tesco even outlawed compostable products by the end of 2019, because composters view that packaging as a contaminant.   In January, Unilever announced that nine of its brands, including Love Beauty and Planet and REN Clean Skincare, would trial new reusable packaging made from aluminum and glass, while Dove would test a new refillable deodorant stick via TerraCycle’s Loop system. This comes after Unilever’s own commitment, which it announced in 2017, that its plastic packaging would be reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025.   “We’ve made an incredible commitment as a company, but the beauty industry is a terrible offender because there are a lot of modern conveniences to using plastic. We have to make loud standards to change existing behavior and challenge that dichotomy of putting so much out there,” said Esi Eggleston Bracey, evp and COO of beauty and personal care at Unilever North America.   Interestingly, though, bigger and smaller companies, alike, like to shout their sustainable practices from the rooftops, especially around seasonal touch points such as Earth Day, World Ocean’s Day and Zero Waste Week, but Eggleston Bracey said efforts cannot be episodic.   “There’s a tension that exists between doing and saying, and both of those things are important, but the watch-out is saying without doing. We are willing to engage in trial-and-error at Unilever, because sustainability is our business model. It’s not a marketing model, and it is our desire to lead,” she said.   However, Szaky encouraged consumers and brands to read between the lines. “A lot of these beauty companies have made lofty commitments to be fully recyclable by 2025 through the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, and we are part of that foundation ourselves, but if you read the details of those press releases, they are claiming that their packaging will be ‘technically ‘ recyclable, and they’re not making any claims around practicality,” said Szaky. “Technical means the process exists, but practical means you can put it in a blue bin in Chicago or New York or anywhere, and it will be recycled. Technical recycling doesn’t take into account the profitable needs of garbage companies. Garbage companies are only going to recycle what they can make money on.”   Certainly the after-use, garbage ramifications of a product are an unsexy proposition for brands and an industry preoccupied with image. But that’s not to say companies’ practices, whether its nascent brand Circumference or Kiehl’s actions, are for naught. “We are trying to do things that make a difference and not just slap a logo on a bottle,” said Arbuckle, who noted that L’Occitane Group has existing challenges in providing recyclable options in Hawaii because of shipping costs, and that is just one hurdle it faces in becoming a fully fledged sustainable business.   Though skeptics would argue that so much talk industry-wide can be misleading, Szaky said the economics have to work for the larger landscape to change. That only comes through investment in smaller-tier programs.   “Whether it’s L’Occitane, MAC or Kiehl’s — and we run the recycling programs in all of their boutiques — those companies are paying the actual cost of collecting and processing minus the value of the product, so that recycling and those recyclable practices are becoming commonplace,” he said. “It may not work at scale with blue bins all across the world, but this gives us a solution in an imperfect world. That will ultimately affect customers’ choice of what to buy, and, no matter what, that’s feasible by 2025.”

Six Ways You Can Reduce Waste at Home

Including tips on how to recycle more than just plastic bottles. woman mending jeans     Believe it or not, reducing the amount of trash you produce doesn't just positively impact the state of our landfills—it can also give your pocketbook a boost. Sure, it takes time to mend items that you can no longer use or to find new ways to repurpose them elsewhere in your home, but the end result is worth it. Recycling is one of the easiest ways to offset the amount of trash you produce and how much you throw out every day. If you simply can't reuse an item—be it old clothing or tarnished kitchenware—consider these six simple alternatives to sending them off to the landfill.  

Mend Your Clothing

In 1929, the average middle-class man owned six work outfits; the average woman, nine—all built to last. The typical American today buys six items of clothing per month. And we dump an awful lot, too: 84 percent of unwanted attire ended up in landfills or in an incinerator in 2012, according to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency data. To streamline what you own (and, ultimately, what you trash), invest in fewer, higher-quality pieces, and when they wear thin, repair them. The Japanese tradition of sashiko is a form of mending that announces itself with artful designs in white thread. The sewing technique leaves shirt plackets and pant knees thicker and more durable. If you don't want to DIY it, shop at retailers that make mending part of their ethos. Nudie Jeans, for instance, offers free repairs on every pair of its jeans for life. Patagonia does the same for all of its gear, in addition to providing repair instructions, selling used and recycled clothing, and even more through its Worn Wear program.  

Drop Off Plastic Bags

Did you know that retailers will actually take back the plastic bags you used to bring your purchases home? The ones that hold groceries, produce, and dry cleaning are all made of high- or low-density polyethylene, which most municipal recyclers can't accept. But many major retailers, including Target and Walmart, offer drop-off bins. Visit how2recycle.info to find participating stores. reusable glass containers    

Start Using Refillable Containers

Back in the day, the milkman picked up empty bottles. We may soon be able to return ice cream and other containers in the same fashion, thanks to programs underway at Nestlé, PepsiCo, Procter & Gamble, Unilever, and several other companies. Together with Terra-Cycle, they're testing a website called Loop, where you can buy food and toiletries in glass, metal, and reusable engineered-plastic vessels and mail them back for more. Nespresso already has a program like this underway: Shoppers can return its pods in prepaid envelopes, where the aluminum gets recycled, and the grounds get composted.   In the meantime, try repurposing glass bottles and jars you have, filling them with food you make or buy in bulk, like grains and beans.  

Turn Denim Into Insulation

Take any stretched, faded, or outdated jeans to J.Crew, Madewell, or a Rag & Bone store. You'll get a discount on a new pair, and the discarded items will get transformed into home insulation as part of these companies' partnerships with Cotton Incorporated's Blue Jeans Go Green initiative.  

Recycle Your Makeup Jars

L'Oréal, Garnier, Burt's Bees, L'Occitane, and more beauty brands are working with the eco-ninjas at TerraCycle to upcycle as much as possible, including tricky mascara tubes. Go to terracycle.com to find a collection point near you (like local drugstores) and drop off your empty packaging. TerraCycle will take it from there.  

Get Composting

Got food scraps? Congratulations: Even in the city, you qualify to transform them into a fertilizer that can help feed the planet. Place fruit and vegetable peels, eggshells, tea leaves, paper tea bags, coffee grounds, and paper filters into an airtight countertop bin to put a lid on the smell—or keep it in a covered bowl in the freezer. Then, take your weekly bag to a municipal site or farmer's market stand, or start a pile in your backyard. Here's how you can get started.  

How the Beauty Industry Is Becoming More Earth-Friendly

You want to look great while respecting the planet, right? April Long Mar 15, 2019       Beauty products can have some ugly effects on the environment, choking landfills with trash and polluting our waterways. Thankfully, companies large and small are stepping up their sustainability game, prioritizing the responsible sourcing of ingredients, implementing earth-friendly manufacturing processes, and experimenting with inventive recycling programs. But we all have a role to play. Even the tiniest gestures make an impact, right down to the number of styling products we use in our hair. Here, how you can help.  

The issue: squandering our resources.

  The way plant ingredients in your creams and shampoos are farmed affects local communities and ecosystems—and a product’s overall carbon footprint. One of the most egregious examples is palm oil, whose derivatives appear in a whopping 70 percent of cosmetics. Indiscriminate building of palm oil plantations in Indonesia and Malaysia has decimated rainforests, and research indicates that deforestation releases more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than all the cars and trucks in the world combined. Also, most personal care products use water in manufacturing and as a main ingredient—and the availability of clean, drinkable water is expected to nose-dive by 2050, thanks to climate change, pollution, and increased demand.  

What’s being done?

  Mega-companies are making major changes. L’Oréal, which has committed to being deforestation-free by 2020, and Estée Lauder are working closely with the global nonprofit Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil to ensure that their cultivation methods and sourcing have minimal negative environmental impact.   So is Unilever—the parent company of DoveSt. Ives, and Pond’s—which released its entire supply chain to the public, promising to source all its palm oil sustainably. That’s a big deal, given that Unilever brands go through more than a million metric tons of the stuff per year. In addition, Unilever and L’Oréal are putting resource efficiency front and center, devising innovative ways to use less water in production and with products themselves (low-water-use shampoo, fast-rinse conditioners).   One of the most exciting developments, though, is brought to us by biotechnology, which companies are using to create environmentally responsible ingredients. The skincare line Biossance makes its squalane, a naturally occurring oil traditionally derived from shark livers or olives, from renewable sugarcane, and the brand Algenist’s key anti-agers, alguronic acid and microalgae oil, come from sustainable algae.  

What can you do?

  At home is start by being mindful of your water use. Turn off the shower while shaving, and skip a shampoo occasionally. If you want to go full-on farm-to-face, choose green beauty standouts like JurliqueJuice BeautyDr. Hauschka, and Tata Harper—they all grow botanicals on their own farms. Otherwise, look for labels such as Ecocert, which guarantees the use of renewable ingredients.           Seed Phytonutrients founder Shane Wolf, who worked to develop the first-ever shower-friendly paper bottles, made from 100 percent recycled material and used for the brand’s shampoo, conditioners, cleansers, and hand wash. More than 60 percent of paper is recycled, while less than 10 percent of plastic is, “Any move away from plastic toward paper is a move in the right direction,” says Wolf. And hidden inside each bottle is a packet of seeds, which can be planted to grow heirloom herbs.    

The issue: emissions and pollution.

  Global fossil fuel–related emissions of carbon dioxide reached an estimated record high of 37.1 billion metric tons in 2018, which is putting us on course for a very hot and smoggy planet. Consumers—that’s us!—are calling for accountability and action, and brands are responding.  

What’s being done?

  The big guys are effecting big change. Several items in Garnier’s SkinActive linehave earned Cradle to Cradle certification, which measures environmental impact over the life of a product, and parent company L’Oréal USA has pledged to achieve carbon neutrality for its plants and distribution centers this year by switching to renewable energy. (Fun fact: The Maybelline Great Lash mascaras sold in America are made with 100 percent renewable electricity.)   And remember those plastic microbeads from face scrubs and cleansers that were turning up in lakes and oceans (and fish bellies) a few years ago? They’ve been banned from rinse-off personal care products in the U.S. Small brands are making a difference, too. Most of Tata Harper’s packaging is made from easily recyclable glass (more than one ton of natural resources, like sand or limestone, is saved for every ton of glass recycled), and the plastic used for its tubes is derived from corn rather than petroleum.  

What can you do?

  Try an eco-audit of your own daily beauty regimen, assessing the number of products you buy and how much waste is produced as a result. The Nature Conservatory’s carbon calculator (nature.org) helps you determine your footprint, then offers tips on what you can do to decrease it. One thing you shouldn’t do: Clean your face with a non-biodegradable wet wipe—and you really shouldn’t flush it down the toilet. Why? Just Google “fatberg.”   Former fragrance exec Marcella Cacci launched the skincare line One Ocean Beauty in 2018 with a simple mission: to help protect the health of the oceans. The brand harnesses “blue biotechnology,” which involves reproducing marine extracts from algae, kelp, and seaweed in the lab rather than harvesting them from the sea. This means there’s no impact on the ocean’s natural bounty. “We never hurt the biodiversity,” says Cacci, who adds that the brand has also donated $250,000 to Oceana, the largest global nonprofit focused solely on ocean conservation.  

The issue: waste.

  A staggering eight million metric tons of plastic ends up in the ocean every year, with countless pieces of bottle caps and straws in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which is actually two large masses between Japan and the U.S. West Coast. If current trends continue, it’s predicted that by 2050, plastic will outweigh fish in our oceans, and 12 billion metric tons of it will sit in landfills. The beauty industry, which produces billions of plastic packaging units annually, has a lot to answer for.  

What’s being done?

  Plenty! Unilever and L’Oréal have committed to using 100 percent recyclable or compostable packaging by 2025; Procter & Gamble, the übercompany behind Pantene, Head & Shoulders, and Herbal Essences, has pledged the same by 2030. Beginning this year, haircare brand Kevin Murphy is going all in, sourcing its packaging from reclaimed ocean plastic, a move that will save more than 360 tons of new plastic annually. Since 2011, Garnier has partnered with TerraCycle to tackle previously unrecyclable beauty packaging, diverting approximately 11.2 million empties from landfills. And at the World Economic Forum in January, a consortium of brands, including REN Clean Skincare and the Body Shop, announced participation in Loop, a shopping program that will offer products in durable packaging that can be returned, sanitized, and reused (like old-school milk bottles). It’s set to launch in the New York City area and France this spring.  

What can you do?

  Excuse us for shouting, but...RECYCLE! According to the Environmental Protection Agency, recycling just ten plastic bottles saves enough energy to power a laptop for more than 25 hours. Since products used in the bathroom tend to have a low recycling rate (people typically keep their bins in the kitchen), make it easier for yourself by keeping a ready receptacle next to the shower. Need more incentive? Kiehl’s, Lush, and MAC offer freebies when you bring in empties, and others, including Origins and Tenoverten (with nail salons in New York City, Los Angeles, and Austin), will accept containers from other brands as well. When shopping, gravitate toward items without excess packaging (or none at all—Lush’s new Naked concept stores offer bath products, haircare in bar form, and facial soaps with no packaging whatsoever), or look for a label that specifies 100 percent recycled content.   Since its inception in 2013, Beautycounter has become one of America’s most trusted sources for cleaner skincare and makeup. Founder Gregg Renfrew’s top goal is ingredient safety (the company’s do-not-use list includes approximately 1,500 chemicals), and she views sustainability as intrinsically linked to that mission. “We’re committed to making decisions that are based on scientific research, but given the large data gaps around safety and sustainability, it’s extremely complicated,” Renfrew says.   To help close those gaps, Beautycounter partners with researchers and universities, and has screened more than 1,000 ingredients for their effects on our health and the environment. Meanwhile, Renfrew is advocating for increased federal oversight to help clean up cosmetics: She and her team have met repeatedly with D.C. lawmakers to lobby for legislation like the Personal Care Products Safety Act, which would give the FDA the power to, among other things, regulate potentially harmful ingredients.  

The issue: animal testing.

  This practice may not be directly related to the environment, but should concern anyone who cares about our fellow living creatures. While the U.S. is inching toward a ban (California will prohibit the sale of cosmetics that have been tested on animals starting next year, and New York and Hawaii have introduced similar legislation), many companies have implemented their own prohibitions on testing. The EU has forbidden it outright, but it’s actually still required for foreign products sold in China. For an international corporation that wants to do business there, this is a problem.  

What’s being done?

  Multinationals and smaller brands alike are pushing for change in China and countries that still permit animal testing; in 2018, the Body Shop and Cruelty Free International (CFI) brought a petition with 8.3 million signatures they’d gathered worldwide to the UN, calling for a global ban.  

What can you do?

  Check labels for a little rabbit; it signifies that CFI’s Leaping Bunny program has certified a product as cruelty-free. If in doubt, check Leaping Bunny’s website or head to PETA to find the rigorously vetted Beauty Without Bunnies list, which ensures that neither brands nor their ingredient suppliers are spritzing hairspray in any animal’s eyes.  

Sustainable Cosmetics Summit will return to NYC for 10th Year

Sustainable Cosmetics Summit will return to NYC for 10th year

 By Deanna Utroske ©Getty Images \ (XiXinXing) The green beauty conference event hosted by ecovia Intelligence is set to take place in New York City again this May and will feature an array of expert speakers from innovative brands like Pinch of Colour, material recycling ventures like TerraCycle, natural ingredient suppliers like Down Under Enterprises, and more.



According to reports, Kiehl’s will sign a contract with TerraCycle under the name of L’Oreal China Group to officially launch its "Made Better" recycling project in China. Kiehl’s will set up collection boxes in stores to actively encourage consumers to practice environmental protection.



According to reports, Kiehl’s will sign a contract with TerraCycle under the name of L’Oreal China Group to officially launch its "Made Better" recycling project in China. Kiehl’s will set up collection boxes in stores to actively encourage consumers to practice environmental protection.