Purple makeup with figs and berries

How green is your makeup?

Beauty doesn’t need to be harmful to us, animals, or the planet. Making better choices when buying cosmetics can reduce waste, reduce the use of plastic packaging, and is an easy way to step up our environmental game. If you are choosing a more sustainable lifestyle and you care about the planet, here is how you can make a difference with your makeup bag.

Reduce Packaging

There are enough brands out there that choose recycled or refillable packaging for their beauty products, making it easier than ever to choose more sustainable cosmetics. Plastic is one of the most wasteful products used in the beauty products biz; cutting down on it is a smart way to green up your cosmetics bag. Look for makeup that doesn’t rely on packaging to be a great product. Recycle any packaging that you can and choose brands that are local, regional, or at the very least in your own country, can significantly reduce the carbon footprint.

Choosing Better Products

Choosing non-toxic products that nourish and enrich the skin makes it less likely to need several items to do one job. From moisturizer to lip balm. Suffer from perpetually dry lips? Try a nourishing lip mask such as this one from Herbal Dynamics Beauty.

Only Buy What You Need

Most of us green divas are guilty of over-buying beauty products. It’s easy to get lost on a trusted beauty product website or in a store and be lured by all the magnificent promises for more beautiful skin. But many products do have an end date and will indeed go bad eventually. If you’re like us, you’ve cleaned out your cosmetic bag or drawer and been shocked at how much you did NOT use. So, try to practice restraint when shopping and use up the products you have before getting new ones.

Quit Using Cotton Balls

Cotton balls are a menace to the oceans, especially when flushed down the toilet (Who does that? Please just don’t.) Most cotton balls are made with plastic (yes, more plastic), they don’t disintegrate, and they make their way to the ocean and harm marine life. Anything that cotton balls do, can be done with a more sustainable, reusable item. If you really need them, please look for organic cotton pads instead. There are some that can be washed and re-used. Here’s why you should always buy organic cotton whenever you have the option.


Bamboo is a resource now popular in the cosmetics industry, reducing the use of plastic — Yay! Bamboo brushes are a much greener choice than plastic brushes. Investing the extra money for a brush that will last longer also reduces waste. There are a lot of deals on cheap plastic brushes, but please just don’t. Taking care of makeup brushes with regular cleaning will help them last longer. Skip the brush entirely and just use your own finger!

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About The Author

The Green Divas's picture

The Green Divas share low-stress ways to live a deeper shade of green through a weekly radio show, podcasts, videos and blog posts. Working with talented partners and credible sources, the Green Divas produce content on a variety of topics relating to a healthy green lifestyle. Visit The Green Divas website to learn more, and check out The Green Divas on FacebookGoogle+, and Twitter too!

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