For us as a natural cosmetics brand, packaging is an important issue that is considered every time we design a new product or revamp an existing one. Cosmetic packaging has a great deal to accomplish: it has to be robust, secure and contain no substances of concern. The packaging should protect our high-quality formulas from oxidation, light and germs. Of course, it also has to look attractive and be user friendly. Not least, its production should use resources economically and it should be recyclable. Unfortunately, there is still no genuinely uncompromising ecological solution on the market in this area. Every material has pros and cons that have to be weighed up over and over again.
Glass bottles are easy to recycle. They also look attractive and do not give off any substances of concern. Unfortunately, glass bottles are also very heavy. Normally heavier than their contents and definitely heavier than plastic bottles. This, in turn, means that more energy is used to transport them. Likewise, very high temperatures are needed to produce glass and a great deal of water is consumed in recycling it.
In the past few years, plastic bottles or packaging made from synthetic plastic in general have fallen into disrepute. Primarily because of the global problem of plastics in our seas and oceans. Nevertheless, they are better than their reputation: they are light, shatter-proof compared to glass, highly durable, versatile in design and use and, if waste is separated efficiently, recyclable. Plastic also causes less environmental pollution in production than glass or aluminium.
They sound very good, but so far have failed to deliver on the promise of their name. Although organic plastics are made from renewable raw materials such as maize or sugar cane, these materials are not organically cultivated but grown using fertilisers, pesticides and genetic engineering. The competition for forest and arable areas is also a point of criticism. As a result, we will not consider organic plastics until they can be proved to be more environmentally friendly than mineral oil-based plastics. We also do not want to use biodegradable organic plastics yet because they only decompose very slowly even in professional composting plants. They are still regarded as foreign bodies in conventional recycling and also contribute to the microplastic problem in many countries where proper recycling chains are not yet in place. Nevertheless, we keep a constant eye on developments here.
MATERIALS USED AND PROPER DISPOSAL
Because of the facts outlined above, we have opted for plastic packaging that is made of materials posing no risk to health and are standard for cosmetics, such as PE (polyethylene), PP (polypropylene) and PET (polyethylene terephthalate). We are working to change over to packaging solutions that require less plastic in the long term. However, as natural cosmetic products only contain natural preservatives, keeping qualities are also a very important consideration. Unfortunately, these can still be best guaranteed by aluminium or plastic packaging. We always adhere to the swissrecycling.ch guidelines ("Design for Recycling") in developing packaging and products in order to ensure optimum recyclability for our plastic packaging.
We do not use any packaging made of PVC (polyvinyl chloride), which is a material of concern in both environmental and health terms, and our packaging contains no softeners such as phthalates, BPA, etc.
We use HDPE for most packaging, which is one of the most easily recycled types of plastic. This can be recycled in Switzerland through the Swiss retailers' voluntary collecting initiative (e.g. recycling units at Migros or Coop – containers for plastic bottles/milk bottles etc.). You will find details of plastic bottle recycling points in Switzerland at: https://recycling-map.ch/. In Germany, our packaging can be recycled in the yellow bag.
COLLAPSIBLE BOXES FROM SUSTAINABLE SOURCES – FSC LOGO
The mission of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is to promote environmentally friendly, socially beneficial and economically viable forest management and thereby ensure that the needs of today's generation can be satisfied without jeopardising the needs of future generations. The independent, non-profit organisation was founded in 1994 as a result of the "Environment and Development" Conference in Rio de Janeiro. Today, the FSC is represented by national work groups in more than 80 countries. The FSC label on our collapsible boxes and brochures is a clear indicator that the paper used comes from responsible, sustainable forest management.