Beauty sector scores low on sustainability in CleanHub report

The poor environmental performance of the global beauty industry is highlighted by a new report from plastic pollution prevention specialist CleanHub.


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Based on estimates and its own analysis of industry data, it claims that 120 billion pieces of single-use beauty-related packaging are used every year, with 95% thrown away rather than recycled.

Furthermore, the company claims that of its more than 7,000 beauty products, only 13% are free of microplastics in its ‘Environmental Impact of the Beauty Industry’ report.

Furthermore, it says that only 14% of plastic beauty waste is recycled and only 9% is recycled.

Meanwhile, beauty also contributes to deforestation: 70% of products produced by the industry contain palm oil and approximately 10.4 million tons of water are used annually in production processes.

The report also highlighted the high levels of emissions the industry is responsible for as well as the ongoing ethical issues with many factory workers “continuing to work in poor conditions, demonstrating that beauty brands need to support them, and farmers, more”.

The report comes as CleanHub claims that 63% of beauty consumers surveyed say ‘clean beauty’ is important to their purchase, with almost half also saying they would pay more for sustainable products.

But it does say: “Thankfully it’s not all doom and gloom. Many cosmetic brands are starting to reconsider their impact on the environment.”

Nikki Stones, vice president of marketing at CleanHub, said: “Wasteful beauty product packaging – much of which is single-use, not recyclable and ultimately ends up in landfills or the ocean – is one of the biggest problems in the world. industry.

As consumers increasingly see clean beauty as a must-have when purchasing products, it has never been more urgent for the beauty industry to make its practices more sustainable.”

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