To kick off this week we're handing over to Helen, a Sky employee who's super enthusiastic about all things sustainable and beauty. Helen's done the research so you don't have to and is keen to share all of her tips and tricks to help us select the most sustainable beauty products! Over to Helen...

I have cared about the environment since I was a child. I remember asking for a Greenpeace membership for my birthday when I was about 10 years old and dragging my dad around our local supermarket sticking “this tuna is not dolphin friendly” stickers on tins of tuna. This mindset has continued into adulthood and with the recent focus on the impact of plastic on the environment, I have been trying to make as many small changes as I can to reduce the amount of single use plastic I use in my day to day life.  

For a long time, I have been concerned about the ingredients in my beauty products and have slowly been moving to more natural, cruelty-free products. When you start looking at this, it is shocking to see how many unnecessary ingredients there are in so many of our day to day beauty products. Following months of research and a lot of trial and error to rule out “greenwashing” I was starting to feel like I had the natural and cruelty-free thing down. However, the fact that so many of these products still came in plastic containers was bothering me so it was back to the drawing board, with further research and a lot more trial and error! Along my journey I have been pleasantly surprised to learn that, more often than not, natural, cruelty-free and sustainable/plastic-free products go hand in hand and I have listed a few of my favourites here.  

Shampoo

I tried SOOO many shampoos and my skin and hair just weren’t having a lot of them and then I discovered Beauty Kubes. They are individual cubes that come in plastic-free, cardboard packaging. You take one or two of the cubes into the shower, crumble them up and mix with water to form a lather. I absolutely love them!  You will also find plastic-free face and body cream on their website. I have tried the body cream and that is also fab! 

Face Cream

My skin is very fussy and there have been a lot of allergic reactions or breakouts along the way but I have found Zoe Bee face creams to work incredibly well for me. They are natural, made in the UK by Zoe herself and come in glass jars that you can easily wash out and reuse.

Deodorant

This is another one that has involved a lot of trial and error. Moving to natural and plastic-free deodorant has been a real challenge but I have finally found two products that I really like and that can last a journey home on the tube in 30 degree heat! (Your Nature Natural Deodorants and Elsa’s skin foods) Your Nature natural deodorants are roll-on and come in cardboard tubes. Elsa’s do still stock roll-on deodorants in plastic but they do amazing tins of crème deodorant as a plastic-free alternative.

Dental Floss

I was totally hooked on my plastic dental floss and although I felt guilty about buying it I didn’t think I would find a sustainable, effective alternative until I discovered Georganics. The floss comes in little glass jars and once it has finished you keep the jar and buy a refill. Georganics also stock various other plastic-free oral hygiene products such as toothpaste, toothbrushes and mouthwash.

Make-up

I was SO excited when I discovered Love the Planet, they stock plastic-free mineral make-up. It arrives in a compostable pouch and can be decanted into an existing container.

If you are heading to a festival or just like a bit of sparkle in your life, Eco glitter do amazing biodegradable, plastic-free glitter.

Other Recommendations

Everyone is different so you will find that some products work for you and others don’t but shop around and try different things. A lot of the brands I have mentioned do sample size or mini versions of their products so you can try them before you invest in the full size versions.

Websites like Peace with the Wild and Plastic Freedom are great for shopping around as they have loads of plastic-free solutions all in one place. I tend to use both sites as they often stock different items.