Dec 5, 2018
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Sub-Zero Waste: the beauty trend set to dominate 2019

Dec 5, 2018

Beauty brands and manufacturers who fail to embrace the rising zero waste movement will struggle to exist in the future, as more consumers shift towards eco-friendly companies amid environmental concerns.


This is according to market intelligence agency Mintel, which has predicted that the zero waste philosophy will gain momentum in the global beauty and personal markets in 2019.

Concepts such as reducing packaging, repurposing, introducing refillable options and extending a product’s life cycle will be a key priority for beauty brands over the next five years, as consumer awareness about the environmental impact of single-use plastics grows.

There are already several cosmetics brands testing zero waste ideas, such as Lush, which opened its first packaging free stores this year, and Procter & Gamble, which introduced a recyclable shampoo bottle made using beach plastic.

Meanwhile, Unilever and  L’Oréal have both pledged to use 100% recyclable, reusable, and compostable plastic by 2025.

“‘Sub-Zero Waste' is not just a trend; it's a movement towards a ground-shaking new archetype for the beauty and personal care industry. Some companies are already discussing completely removing packaging from the equation. Whether reducing or eliminating waste altogether, if brands don't change their approach now, they will become insignificant,” said Andrew McDougall, associate director at Mintel Beauty & Personal Care.

"We’re seeing that some indie brands have the upper hand with regard to sustainable beauty as they have built their business practices around ethics and environmentally friendly practices. Larger brands must adopt new practices in order to catch up with these smaller, more nimble competitors.

“Consumers today are paying a lot more attention to their impact on the planet and climate change calls are more drastic than ever before. A bigger-picture focus is needed throughout the beauty and personal care industry supply chain for a true zero waste mentality."

According to Mintel, the Sub-Zero Waste movement will shape the beauty and personal care industry over the next five years, and brands purposely create limited shelf life products or encourage overconsumption run the risk of disappearing.

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