We’re all about switching your beauty and skincare to plastic free and zero waste where possible.

But, if you try to do it all at once, the likelihood is, you’ll end up feeling overwhelmed and stressed.

Instead, we advise a ‘step-by-step’ approach. This way, you’ll avoid buying more than you need, or throwing out things you later regret. 

It’s a bit like deciding that overnight you’re going to overhaul all your diet and lifestyle issues; chances are without planning or small changes, you’ll get fed up and give up.  So, with that in mind, here are our 12 top tips to sustainable beauty swaps you can make right away.

  1.       Ditch the Non-biodegradable Toothbrush:

Did you know that every toothbrush you’ve ever used still exists somewhere on the planet? They’re going to be around long after your last teeth have fallen out.  And there’s no need for toothbrushes to be made of plastic.

In fact, many dentists love a bamboo toothbrush.  Made with environmentally safely sourced bamboo, they’re not only biodegradable, they’re kinder on teeth and gums too! 

  1.       Get SMART about your Switches:

We’re huge advocates of the ‘smart’ way of managing your sustainability goals:

SPECIFIC:  Plan out which products you can switch easily, and which may take more time.

MEASURABLE: Have a goal in place and track how well you’re doing.  The app Sustainability Goals has some amazing ideas and trackers to make this manageable and shows how it helps the planet!

ACHIEVABLE: Like we said.  Don’t decide ‘that’s it, today’s the day when I throw nothing away’. Little and often works.

REALISTIC: Can you afford to swap everything? Do you have the time to go to the plastic free place every week? If not, try realistic alternatives that work for you.

TIMELY: Give yourself a realistic timeframe in which to make your swaps. For example, in July, I’ll switch to organic cotton buds. In August, I’ll run out of moisturiser, so I’ll switch to a plastic free alternative,  and in September, we’ll explore food and beauty and how we can minimise waste.

  1.       Sustainable Menstrual Hygiene Products:

The easiest swaps are your consumables products – the disposable items we use regularly. For many women, sanitary protection is a big part of this.  TWO BILLION menstrual products are flushed down the toilet every year, so swapping to a plastic free or zero waste (or both) option is a great shout.

If you’re a tampon user, you could try paper-wrapped tampons or a menstrual cup instead.  Made of silicone, and fully reusable, menstrual cups are a hygienic and safe way to switch.  Alternatively, reusable pads or period knickers can be a clean and zero waste friendly change to make, even for heavier flows.

  1.       Swap out the Silicones to Sustainable Shampoo:

Not only are most shampoos sold in plastic bottles that often aren’t recycled, but the ingredients often include silicones and ethoxylated sulphates too. These are harmful for the planet and aren’t great for your hair either.

Instead, try a shampoo bar.  Formulated with natural ingredients that nourish and shine, they smell incredible and there’s no wastage.

  1.       Ditch the mainstream deodorant

And instead go with a natural alternative. Ku.Tis make a range of natural balm deodorants in recyclable packaging that not only smell great, they leave the skin healthy and nurtured. 

  1.       Consider DIY Skincare

Making your own skincare is not only much easier than you think (especially with our DIY kits). It’s mindful and kind to the planet too! 

We share a new DIY recipe every month in our mailers and you get a free skincare recipe book when you sign up!

  1.       Choose Soaps and a Sisal Bag

Soap isn’t just fabulous at getting you clean, without a ton of waste.  It’s so handy!  You can define your brows with it, tame your tresses, freshen shoes, and remove stains.

Our handmade soaps have a range of scents and last for ages, without going slimy! - Particularly with the help of a bamboo soap dish!

Another great soap-saving hack is to put your soap into a natural sisal soap bag. Not only does it keep the soap intact for longer, but the bag’s natural fibres are also gently exfoliating. Especially handy for little soap ends - don’t throw them away - put them in your sisal bag!

  1.       Razor Sharp

Razors are not biodegradable so they just sit there for a long time taking up space until eventually breaking down into smaller pieces of plastic that can harm both wildlife and humans alike!

In fact, a 2017 Statista.com's poll found that over 60 million razors were sold in the United Kingdom, with the majority ending up as landfill trash and then microplastic pollution.

You could try switching to our beautiful bamboo razor. It not only degrades, but it’s also reusable and a gorgeous gift.

  1.       Wipe Out

Wipes for the face and body are just about the worst things you can choose for the environment.  That’s why we stock a range of reusable wipes for face and nails.  

Easy to clean, great for the skin and far more earth-kind than their disposable alternatives! They’re more effective too!

  1.   Beat the microbead

Many mainstream masks, scrubs and toothpastes contain microplastic abrasive particles that simply aren’t good for the skin or the planet.

Avoid these by choosing a natural alternative packaged in zero waste jars, or make your own mask. Either way, it’s a waste-free win!

  1.   No More Plastic Ties

Those plastic hair ties we lose all over the place may seem convenient, but they’re a serious environmental challenge AND they’re bad for your hair.

We teamed with plastic free hair accessories range Tabitha Eve to offer a stylish, hair kind and less damaging alternative.

  1.   Eco-Friendly Sunscreen

Mineral sunscreens have not always been the greatest user experience.  More recent formulas are not only less ‘white’ on the skin, but they’re also less likely to block pores AND some come in recyclable packaging.

We love Odylique’s factor 30 SPF for not only being certified organic and effective, but in the prettiest reusable glass jar.  

  1.   Love your Lips

Lip balms made with petroleum and packaged in plastic tubes are a recycling nightmare and they’re so bad for your skin.

Again, DIY is an easy swap, or we’re a little obsessed with this super-cute vintage style Ku.Tis tin – why not try this first, then make your own and fill it over and over again?

Got more sustainable beauty and skincare swaps you want to share? Let us know on Instagram @acalaonline!

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