There is almost nothing around us that is not made of plastic. It seems that plastic is involved in almost every aspect of our lives. It is everywhere you go and it’s really convenient in many ways. However, even though these plastics can be repurposed, single-use ones harm our ecosystem. Thus, it is so unfortunate how something so small can have so much negative impact. It is especially harmful to the ocean. The ocean is dominated by marine organisms, and plastic negatively impacts their health. While the situation is receiving much more attention there are so many businesses that have been very successful at being sustainable. Even though it cannot fix the plastic pollution overnight it is important that businesses are taking these steps in trying to make a change that can help the environment.
One business that is taking these steps at being more environmentally sustainable is Lush.
Lush is a company dedicated to creating fresh, cruelty-free, vegetarian, handmade, low-waste, and effective bath, body, skin, and hair care products that are sourced ethically and without animal testing. The company leads the way in the development of solid products, which eliminates the need for packaging. Millions of plastic bottles are saved from being produced, transported, and disposed of every year by their naked bubble bars, conditioners, and henna hair dyes. In addition, when you purchase naked products, you get the best ingredients and fragrances, so your money is spent on products that are the best for your skin and hair, rather than fancy packaging that can be discarded easily. A simple change from packaged to naked can have a profound impact. Take the shampoo bars for example. 124 million plastic bottles were prevented from ever being made due to selling 41 million shampoo bars since 2005. The amount of plastic saved is about 3417 tons, which is about the weight of 30 blue whales.
Solid, naked products have been a hallmark of Lush for decades since they don’t require any synthetic preservatives – this means that they are completely self-preserving. The product recipes are designed so that there’s little to no water required for bacterial growth, and instead, we substitute honey and salt, natural preservatives that don’t contain synthetic chemicals. Offering unpackaged bath, shower, and body products encourage others to become innovative and reduce their packaging usage too by raising awareness of the overuse of disposable packaging.
When Lush can’t eliminate packaging completely (like in the case of liquid body washes or gift sets), they use materials that are recyclable, reusable, compostable, or post-consumer recycled, like their 100 percent post-consumer recycled plastic bottles and pots. In a way not every big business is going to be 100% plastic-free so in a way lush might be greenwashing some of their products. Overall they seem to be doing a good job at trying to be sustainable for the environment. It’s also cool that Lush has also been experimenting with using ocean plastics in its packaging. The removal of plastic from the ocean would be economically beneficial while supplying packaging made from post-consumer plastic.
I think their attempted effects on trying to become more sustainable and making an impact on other businesses, are very good, especially the fact that they try to eliminate as much waste as possible which can be very good for the environment.