Given that the planet is running out of resources and current landfills are running out of space, an increasing number of consumers are choosing to buy personal care products that have no impact on the environment.
To satisfy consumer needs and to build a more sustainable future, many beauty companies have started taking responsibility for their impact on the environment. Environmentally conscious companies have set the goal of reducing the amount of pollution and waste associated with their business by producing eco-friendlier cosmetic products. They use sustainable raw materials and renewable energy sources and promote recycling and reuse of packaging materials.
What Is Eco-Friendly Shampoo?
Many ingredients in conventional hair shampoos have long-term toxic effects and may accumulate in the environment. Zinc pyrithione, an anti-dandruff agent that can be found in many anti-dandruff shampoos, is very toxic for marine life. Fragrances may hide toxic chemicals that have low levels of biodegradability. Preservatives like parabens and triclosan are not readily biodegradable and are considered environmental pollutants.
Ocean-friendly shampoos are formulated with biodegradable ingredients that are not hazardous to your health and will not harm marine fish once they are rinsed down the drain. All ingredients in an environmentally friendly shampoo must not be bioaccumulative or toxic for marine life. An eco-friendly shampoo doesn’t pollute the environment when the packaging is disposed of. The manufacturing process is green and sustainable.
The Importance of Biodegradable Packaging
Shampoo packaging has a significant environmental impact since almost all packaging ends up in the garbage. Nonbiodegradable packaging contributes to waste production and harms the environment.
An ocean-friendly shampoo has packaging that is biodegradable or recyclable. Some earth-friendly companies have started to package their shampoos in aluminum bottles that can be refilled and reused, eliminating single-use plastic bottles. The aluminum bottles can be reused several times and can be completely recycled. Recycling saves 95 percent of the energy that would be required for producing new bottles from the primary sources. If we take the time to dispose of them properly, aluminum bottles and cans create minimal waste. Unlike plastic that can be recycled a limited number of times, aluminum can be recycled indefinitely without a loss in quality.
Another way to eliminate single-use plastic bottles is to buy shampoo bars that are wrapped in compostable paper. These shampoo bars are much eco-friendlier than liquid shampoos that come in plastic bottles.
In addition to choosing an eco-friendly shampoo, you can help to reduce the environmental impact by using no more than the recommended amount of the product. Using less product helps reduce the amount sent down the drain and lowers the number of bottles that contribute to landfills.
5 Biodegradable Shampoo Brands
1. Eco-Friendly Shampoos by Plaine Products
These zero-waste shampoos are made with organic and biodegradable ingredients, and the company promotes the concept of sustainable and reusable packaging.
To reduce plastic consumption, the company uses refillable aluminum bottles. When ordering your first bottle of shampoo, you need to choose the “with pump” option. When ordering a refill bottle, choose the “without pump” option. The refill bottles come in a box with the return label to send the empty bottles back to be cleaned and reused.
Plaine shampoos are a bit on the pricey side, so you need to spend the extra money to get those green beauty products.
2. Intelligent Nutrients Environmental Size Shampoos
Intelligent Nutrients, the first USDA certified organic hair care line, was created by Aveda founder Horst Rechelbacher who was an active environmentalist and innovative business leader. He created an organic farm located in Wisconsin that is powered by green energy. Intelligent Nutrients company grows plants on this farm to make non-toxic, biodegradable products for a reduced environmental footprint. Intelligent Nutrients’ products are made from plants, and all the ingredients are listed on the label, including aromas. Their shampoo bottles are made of postconsumer recycled plastic.
3. Eco-Friendly Solid Shampoo Bars by Ethique
This company has a mission to eliminate plastic waste by creating high-quality, zero-waste beauty products. Their shampoo bars are made from sustainably sourced and biodegradable ingredients. These shampoo bars are non-toxic, vegan, and certified cruelty-free.
Unlike liquid shampoos that contain up to 95 percent water, Ethique solid shampoo bars are highly concentrated. The company claims that one shampoo bar can replace three bottles of liquid shampoo. Their shampoo bars have 100 percent compostable packaging. The compact size makes these products convenient for traveling.
4. Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Soaps and Soap Bars
Dr. Bronner’s is the best-selling brand of organic body care products in North America. Their socially and environmentally responsible products are made of certified organic and cruelty-free ingredients. The formulas are concentrated, biodegradable, and free of synthetic preservatives and foaming agents. Dr. Bronner’s liquid soaps and soap bars can be used for many kinds of cleaning (beyond just body care) without harming people, animals, or the environment.
To minimize waste, their bottles are made from 100 percent post-consumer recycled plastic bottles.
5. Biodegradable Shampoo & Body Wash by Direct 2 Boater
According to the manufacturer, this 2-in-1 hair and body wash is safe to use in fresh, brackish, or salt water and is not harmful to coral reefs. This product is unscented, which is a good sign that toxic ingredients are absent from the formula.
Less eco-friendly features: There is not enough information about the potential environmental impact of the packaging. The bottle has a wide opening that makes dispensing smaller amounts of the product almost impossible.
Some companies promote green lifestyles only for marketing purposes. If you order a product that has been advertised as environmentally friendly but comes in plastic packaging, don’t buy it again. Environmental responsibility must be incorporated in all stages, starting with sustainable raw materials and green power sources. The product must be composed of ingredients that are safe for your health and also safe for the planet. Finally, it should be packed and shipped in biodegradable, reusable, or recyclable packaging. Make sure to only use products that are fully in line with your journey toward a zero-waste lifestyle.