You may have heard the terms “carbon-neutral” or “carbon-negative” thrown around when discussions of sustainability come about. A brief Google search turned into hours of simply skimming thorough research far beyond the clean beauty movement. The universal focus: products that have less of an impact on our planet.
There are so many ambiguous terms used when discussing the role that beauty can and should play in terms of sustainability. It’s hard to figure out what’s real when everyone is self-proclaiming their brands are “clean,” “green,” “eco-friendly,” etc. without the need to provide much support. As consumers, it’s up to us to help shape the expectations and demand transparency across all claimed green efforts and verify these facts.
Environmentalist and CEO of Formula Botanica, Lorraine Dallmeier explained to DAZED, “A carbon neutral beauty product results in no net release of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere. In other words, you either avoid releasing carbon dioxide in the first place, or you remove as much carbon dioxide as you put into it.”
However, many also see a brand as carbon-neutral if they financially donate to green programs and charities, as well as working on internal sustainability efforts as well. There really is no one-size-fits-all in this area, but there should be an overall effort to reduce and eliminate carbon emissions from a product-based company’s entire processes.
Your carbon footprint
Did you know that the easiest way to cut your carbon footprint is by cutting down your consumption? Think about all of the products you use or buy—yeah, I know, it’s a lot. Think about the life cycles of these products and their packaging. When I did this, I started realizing how much trash I was creating, and how many products I really only used a few times before tossing aside.
Look at how much you buy online versus locally. One of the best things that you can do to reduce your carbon footprint is cut as much travel from your shopping as possible, which includes shipping. Support local stores and brands whenever possible.
Focus on recycling as much as you can. Some stores even have programs to help you recycle your used and empty product containers. Time to do some research!
You could also think like a brand; if you’re having trouble offsetting your carbon footprint by buying carbon offsets. Donate and support local projects and initiatives that work to offset emissions.
Shop The Most Sustainable Brands:
Main + featured image from our Help Your Creativity Thrive guide!