A couple I picked up touted their use of fresh fruit extracts and seeds. Fantastic! Apart from the fact that when you read the ingredients list, copolymer acrylate is still right there. For those that haven't heard yet, copolymer acrylate is plastic. So a whole bunch of brands are putting tiny little balls of plastic in things like exfoliating scrubs and toothpaste and these products are designed to be washed straight down the drain. Because water treatment plants aren't able to filter out these tiny balls of plastic they go out into our oceans, and into our food chain.
It was bollocks over 15 months ago, and it still is. In California they are looking at legislation to ban this stuff. Why do we need to legislate against this? You don't have to be a genius to work out what a spectacularly bad idea it is to put tiny bits of plastic in stuff that people wash down the drain and that can't be filtered out before it ends up in the ocean. To all those companies that are still doing this....it's time to change. Surely your chemists can come up with something better?
Dear Beauty Industry,
I'm about to call bollocks on one of the most ridiculous things I've ever heard. I found out earlier this week that dozens of the products in my bathroom are full of tiny little micro-beads of plastic. At first I thought this was some far left scare campaign designed to get me all hot and bothered at multi national beauty conglomerates. But it's not. Lots of those products you are selling have little exfoliating beads in them that are actually plastic. You didn't go and crush up apricot kernels or walnut shells or anything else even vaguely natural like I thought you had. Imagine my surprise when I realised it was a thing called acrylates or polyethylene which in layman's terms means plastic. Its nothing more than teensy bits of plastic, which you in all your wisdom, have actually designed to be washed straight into our waterways. You're putting it in shampoos, face creams, and body washes. You are even putting little tiny balls of plastic in our toothpaste to help us with brushing our pearly whites. Mmm tasty.
Are you guys serious? Kids with a basic grasp of chemistry or biology will tell you that if you wash teensy beads of plastic straight down the drain into our waterways that it will end up in our marine environment, be consumed by fish and make its way up the food chain. Turns out that this rubbish has already been found in marine animals. Unfortunately you didn't design better filtration systems downstream to stop this stuff ending up in the marine environment. Bit of an oversight guys?
I don't want to dislike any beauty brand or business. I don't like to have to call you out on this. I wish you had done the right thing and realised back when this concept was on the drawing board what an epic fail it is. But we all make mistakes and with the benefit of hindsight we correct our errors and move forward. Be sure to send me a note when you've moved forward, taken responsibility and realised the world expects better than this. Once you get there I'll be happy to spend my beauty dollars with you again. In the meantime, can anyone tell me about beauty brands that are not doing this, and where I can get my foundation, toothpaste, lotions and potions, minus the dose of plastic?
I found out about this by reading The Story of Stuff Project. Want to know how much plastic you are washing straight down the drain, head to your bathroom and look for words like acrylate, acrylate polymer, acrylate copolymer and polyethylene. Make your own mind up whether you want to slather bits of plastic on your body, your kids bodies and wash it down the drain, into the oceans, and right into our food chain.