The Best Sustainable Beauty Tools For Every Step of Your Routine
Looking to make a positive change? Start with these sustainable beauty tools.
Green your beauty routine
We all want effective beauty tools, but these days, pondering a beauty purchase might include questioning its sustainability. Does it contribute to the plastic pollution problem? (A 2016 study revealed that only nine percent of plastic is recycled in Canada.) How much strain does it put on the world’s water supply? Where on the globe was it made and by who, and how were they treated? There’s lots to think about, and frankly, finding sustainable perfection in any one product is unrealistic.
What you can do is use your consumer power to support environmentally sound products and focus on the cumulative effect of making small changes to your daily routines. Thankfully, more brands are rethinking their impact on the planet, and there are now eco-minded options for every part of a beauty routine.
This is where details matter and small gestures, like swapping disposable cotton pads for machine-washable ones, can add up to a carbon-footprint win. Whether you’re in the market for a makeup bag revamp, a sink-ritual renew or a greener way to shower, we’ve got you covered. And, in the spirit of paying it forward, these sustainable beauty buys also make thoughtful, unique gifts.
For your makeup routine
What goes into a sustainable makeup brush? It starts with a handle made of bamboo (the plant grows quickly and efficiently, and requires much less water than other woods), includes a recyclable ferrule (the aluminum accent) and is finished off with cruelty-free bristles made of the softest long-lasting nylon.
The Body Shop Fresh Nude Foundation Brush, $26, OR Angled Blusher Brush, $22, thebodyshop.com.
For the perfect ponytail
Give your topknot an eco-minded makeover with a biodegradable plastic-free hair accessory made of natural tree rubber and organic, fair-trade cotton.
Kooshoo Organic Scrunchies, $20 for two, kooshoo.com.
For your lips
It’s a chic refillable! This luxe compact holds a blend of shea butter and jojoba oil that nourishes lips, while the soft pink hue enlivens a winter-weary complexion. Simply pop in a fresh pan as needed.
Kjaer Weis Iconic Edition Lip Tint in Romance, $49 USD; refill, $25USD; kjaerweis.com.
(Related: 10 Changes You Can Make For a Healthier Home)
For removing your makeup
Swipe, wash, repeat. Crafted for versatility, this plush set of reusable (a.k.a. machine-washable) organic cotton pads for eyes and face can be used with micellar water, makeup remover or even your fave toner or essence.
Daily Concepts Daily Bio-Cotton Makeup Removers, US$12 for 5, dailyconcepts.com.
For detangling your locks
Bamboo grows quickly and is biodegradable, which earns it major ecological points. On this hairbrush, widely spaced bamboo bristles stand in for synthetic or animal-sourced ones to gently glide through hair — and those nubby tips deliver a blissful scalp massage.
Bkind bamboo brush, $22, bkind.com.
For scrubbing yourself clean
Made with the porous root of an Asian vegetable, the konjac sponge has a gentle texture and vitamin-rich composition that will upgrade your cleansing ritual. Ideal for all skin types, even sensitive, one sponge lasts up to three months. It can then be tossed into the compost bin or live on in the garden or a potted plant to naturally hold water.
One Love Organics The Cleansing Sponge in Rose Clay, $13, thedetoxmarket.ca.
For those stubborn leg hairs
This razor’s elegant brass handle is designed to be long-lasting, and the investment on the handle is offset by the replacement blades, which cost way less than conventional options.
Well Kept Safety Razor, $82; replacement blades, $15 for 22; thedetoxmarket.ca.
For cleaning your hair
A chunky unisex shampoo bar made with coconut and sweet almond oil can last up to 60 washes — and means one less 500-millilitre plastic bottle on your conscious. Supporting a Black-owned Toronto-based business feels equally good.
Sade Baron Shampoo Bar, $14, sadebaron.com.
For exfoliating to the max
Ditch the synthetic scrubbie for an ethically produced brush that stars one of Mother Nature’s top-notch exfoliators. Semi-firm sisal comes from the perennial agave plant, which doesn’t require fertilizer or pesticides. The handle, a repurposed timber castoff otherwise destined for the landfill, deserves a shoutout too.
Consonant Skincare Sisal Dry Brush, $20, consonantskincare.com.