a contribution by Anastasia Grigoreva,
student in International Corporate Finances
at Plekhanov Russian University of Economics (Moscow),
on exchange at ESSCA in 2018.
The growing popularization of a healthy lifestyle, alongside with the ubiquitous awareness of environmental problems, from which the Earth suffers during the 21st century, encourages millennials to reject silicones, parabens, dyes and other artificially derived substances in cosmetics. Today eco-friendly commodities are distributed not only through specialized concept stores: any retail “giant” is glad to offer a huge selection of such production to its customers. Some of the latter have even launched their own brands of organic and environmentally friendly cosmetic products. With the help of naturopathy therapists, dermatologists and chemists everyone has learned that parabens, silicones, PEG, PPS, SLS and mineral oil are the synonyms of harm, so people are eschewing them (no matter how much you explain that parabens usage neither has any fatal consequences nor is their absence a panacea).
It is thought that biologically pure treatments are less harmful and more effective for health. Most of the blogs are run by professionals and confirmation of the benefits of bio ingredients relies not only on the personal experience: Rita Li has introduced her project being a certified biochemist and licensed cosmetologist with experience in dermatology. Several leaders from the beauty industry built a career on their experiences and analysis of the compositions of cosmetics. For instance, Paula Begoun the author of more than twenty books on skin and hair care, has created her own website, that aims at establishing a systematization of ingredients used in make-up products: each product is linked to scientific research and assigned in a rating of effectiveness.
In any case, dear reader, I hope for your vigilance and understanding that there is no need to declare war on silicones, because there are already natural derivatives that can replace artificial ones.
Everything that was mentioned before concerned only the influence on our skin But what about sustainability? Do people care as much about the environment as they do care about the skin?
Fortunately, the trends are set by the millennials, who care a lot about nature. In recent years many tools were invented for both protecting skin and ecology by the youth. Users are in an endless search of combination of the pleasant with the useful. For me, as a 20-year old representative of our generation, is important to realize that progress is largely held by oncomings.
Now I would like to highlight such major projects as a shop in New York (alongside with the online store) that offers an alternative to plastic disposable items, focusing on health and beauty collections. The founder of the store, Lauren Singer, promotes an eco-friendly Zero Waste approach. According to Lauren, all the garbage she has produced in the last 5 years could fit in a half-liter jar. It seems that there is nothing prodigious in her idea to collect environmentally friendly products from different manufacturers and resell them, but it’s her marketing approach that makes the difference. Apart from cosmetics, you are able to find steel cocktail straws instead of plastic or eco-friendly frisbees made of hemp instead of plastic, paper, beeswax (instead of cling film), or even biodegradable glitter.
Another lot is NaturALL Club (which creates bio hair treatments), designed by a student of Pennsylvanian University, Muhga Eltigani. She said with regret that commercial hair products never satisfied her needs and, what is more, “contained parabens, formaldehyde, phthalates, and other toxic chemicals that over time, would degrade my hair and poison my body”. It was a starting point for the creation of the own products with fresh and natural ingredients.
The big hair brands tell us that if we want a natural, safe product, we have to sacrifice performance and results. I knew there had to be a solution that didn’t compromise the effectiveness of the product OR the health of my body.
Why are these examples important to be discussed? They show that organic, recyclable and non-disposable commodities are available and effective in replacing synthetic products. I used to think: “I will never ever apply food, plants or anything like this on my face! I have great chemical treatments, there is no need for natural commodities” But, today I strongly support the opinion that we should care about the “health” of nature, as well as we do care about ourselves, and a new era of green startups creates this precious opportunity.
After all, some issues are still uncovered, e.g. promotion through the web by sending countless newsletters to subscribers, which is producing a considerable amount of CO2 [Link to Rodrigo’s blogpost here]. So, there is still plenty of work left for us in terms of a sustainable future .
The overall forecast seems to be positive. Everywhere, organizations, countries and people realize where we stand, what problems the world has faced in recent years. Thus, measures should be taken, and aims are stated, i.e. Paris agreement, European Union Environment Action Programme to 2020 and so on. General rules affect not only environment policies, but also human’s minds, and this is why people tend to apply measures at the level at which it is possible: new “ecology limited” start-ups are created, the economy is becoming more likely to follow a minimum waste approach and manage resources sustainably. Moreover, I am sure that the next step of the eco-beauty business is going to be government subsidiaries because these treatments are more sustainable for people’s health and manufacturing products (probably packages) from recycled waste.
One day, bio cosmetics will replace synthetic cosmetics approximately by 75%, on the shelves we will see beauty and health products packed in fully recyclable material.
Hopefully this article influenced your further decisions in the choice of cosmetics and you assume the fact that buying bio make-up products, you save both your health and the nature. Let me conclude with some practical advice:
Here is the list of natural treatments, which may be used if your skin is in need for a particular type of care. The list was created by me with the help of a chemist who works with dermatologists, Natalya Ishutkina (dushechka-soap.blogspot.ru). I have talked to Natalya and asked for the most relevant skin care products skin care. Pay attention that before applying anything on your face, consult with a doctor.
- Day facial cream with vanilla extract, Dushecka
- Energizing eye cream, Botanical kinetics
- Corrector with vitamin C, La Roche-Posay
- Aloe gel, Holika-holika
- Brightening spray for blond hair, Furterer
- Weleda skin care
- Moisture surge hydrating, Clinique
- Lip balm, EOS// Avene// Bioderma
- Shampoo for oily hair, Klorane
- Balancing toner, Alchemist