Trust in the ethics of the beauty brands you buy from by looking for a B Corp certificate.

When it comes to the beauty industry, buzzword marketing around ‘natural’, ‘sustainable’ and ‘clean’ formulas can be hard to decipher from clear credentials. Even with a whole gamut of accreditations to rely on – including Eco Cert, Vegan Society, Soil Association, Fair Trade – it’s still hard to sort the ‘sayers’ from the ‘doers’ when it comes to fulfilling on truly sustainable promises. Green washing, after all, is not a new type of eco cleanser, alas.

Enter then the B Corp certification, which has set a new gold standard in brands’ ‘social and environmental performance’, giving consumers confidence in their true credibility. An initiative created by B Lab, a global non-profit, a brand’s performance is assessed via a rigorous testing process across five areas: governance, workers, customers, community, and the environment. It looks at workers’ conditions, pay, the environmental impact of the raw materials used, and some 200-plus other factors.

In short, it’s a great standard to look out for if you are cleaning up your bathroom cabinet act this spring in search of truly sustainable beauty brands. Here are nine of our favourites, including our top buys.

Main image: The Body Shop

The Body Shop


Trailblazers in sustainability for forty years, The Body Shop has strong roots in sourcing Fair Trade ingredients for its products and a transparency in its supply chain. Now it is forging ahead with more changes to the packaging in order to offer refillable or fully recyclable options and thus further its sustainable stance.



WE LOVE: The Pumpkin Instant Radiance In-Shower Mask for a brightening shot of enzymatic exfoliation to reveal smoother, glowing skin. Buy it.


Dr Bronner


Founded in 1948 by third-generation master soap maker, Dr Emanuel Bronner, the brand is still family run today, with social and environmental responsibility very much at its heart. It has invested $2.5million in fair-trade raw materials, boasts a zero-waste production factory and packaging is made from 100 per cent post-consumer plastic.



WE LOVE: It has to be the original ’18-in-1’ Peppermint Castile Soap. Great for travelling, you can use it for everything from body wash to laundry detergent, mopping the floor to washing the dog or even the dishes! Buy it.


Dame


Dame’s refillable tampons have saved six million applicators from ending up in landfill. With reusable, washable pads also available and period pants launching this spring, this brand is forging the way in rethinking single-use sanitary wear.



WE LOVE: Their Reusable application set with discreet storage tin, organic cotton, unbleached tampons and zip-lock bag. Buy it.


Ethique


A climate positive brand, Ethique uses 100 per cent plastic-free, home-compostable packaging and makes a charity donation with every purchase. A beauty model with real impact, it has saved 11.4 million litres of water and 13 million bottles from being manufactured since 2012.



WE LOVE: The ‘Little Ethique’ baby range of solid wash, shampoo, conditioner and massage bars – gentle soap-free formulas with nourishing cocoa butter and beautifully scented mandarin and lavender. Buy it.


Typology Paris


Typology’s back-to-basics approach to cut through the noise and empty promises in the skincare world and deliver naturally active formulations has earned it a reputation for ‘premium products, high quality ingredients and honest pricing.’ It offers tailored routine kits in fully recyclable aluminium and glass packaging.



WE LOVE: The hybrid tinted serum with squalene, aloe vera and vitamin C for a super glowy, enhanced version of your skin. Buy it.


Aromatherapy Associates


Aromatherapy Associates has made great strides since the 1980s to become a B Corp brand in 2020, removing 1.5 tonnes of virgin plastic from its production in one year alone. The hand-crafted essential oil formulas use ethically and sustainably sourced ingredients, which are blended to create a range with a focus on supporting and enhancing wellbeing and mental health.



WE LOVE: The Inner Strength bath and shower oil with anxiety-settling clary sage, grounding sandalwood and sweet geranium to balance fraught emotions. It’s a hug in a bottle to send to anyone in need of some TLC. Buy it.


Sunday Riley


Sunday Riley’s high-active, science-based formulas have gained the brand cult status for the skin-changing results. And it is committed not just to delivering on product but on production too, with waste oil from its seed pressing process going to use in animal feed and fertiliser. These sustainability efforts continue once the products have left the factory with charity initiatives, 100 per cent recyclable packaging and carbon-offsetting too.



WE LOVE: The CEO Glow Vitamin C oil as a morning short-cut to perky, dewy skin. Buy it.


By Lydia Mansi
February 2022

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Lydia Mansi

Lifestyle Editor

Lydia is an all-round lifestyle guru, tireless champion of women in business and our resident expert on beauty.

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