Although plastic microbeads have been banned in New Zealand and other countries for some time, hundreds of other microplastics are still included in cosmetic and personal care products worldwide. Microplastics are tiny plastic particles, often added to products as cheap fillers or emulsifying agents. Although they are hardly visible to the naked eye, they can cause damage to the environment and ocean life, and have potentially harmful effects on human health.
What are the effects of microplastics?
Unfortunately once microplastics are in the environment, they are there to stay, as they are not biodegradable. They are unable to be filtered out in wastewater systems, and often end up in our waterways and oceans. As these tiny plastic particles enter the ocean, they are eaten or absorbed by sea animals, and passed along the food chain. As humans are at the top of the food chain, we are likely to ingest microplastics too.
In addition to damaging our oceans and sea life, these microplastics put us and our children at risk. Beat the Microbead, an international campaign against the use of plastics in cosmetics, has identified over 500 microplastic ingredients widely used in cosmetics and personal care products (view the list here). Many additives in these plastics are considered harmful, and with the hundreds of different microplastics used, we are yet to have a complete understanding of the effects of microplastics on human health. By using products with these ingredients, we are exposed to chemicals proving to be dangerous, not only to our own health, but to the health of our fellow species and the planet we live in.
How do I avoid microplastics?
Thankfully, there are cosmetic and personal care brands that are completely free of microplastic ingredients. Look for brands with the Zero Plastic Inside logo, which certifies that brand is 100% free of any microplastic ingredients. Organised by Beat the Microbead, this logo allows you to easily find cosmetics and personal care products that won’t compromise your health or the environment.
Living Nature is proud to be 100% microplastic free, and carries the Zero Plastic Inside logo. Instead of using cheap plastic fillers, all of our skincare, cosmetics, body care, and baby care products are formulated with clean, natural ingredients and no nasties. We focus on sustainably sourced, New Zealand ingredients, including Harakeke Flax Gel, Totara Extract, Active Manuka Honey, Manuka Oil, and Halloysite Clay. These hero ingredients are known for their healing, purifying and nourishing qualities - there’s no need for microplastics in our award winning formulations.
Beat the Microbead App
The Beat the Microbead campaign has made it even simpler to identify microplastics in products with their state of the art app, which is completely free, and is available on Android and Apple. Just take a photo of a products ingredient list, and using text recognition technology, the app scans the ingredients and lets you know if the product contains microplastics.
For more information about microplastics, visit Beat the Microbead on their website (https://www.beatthemicrobead.org/.) or social media. Twitter: @BeatTheBead; Facebook: @BeattheMicroBead; Instagram: plasticsoupfoundation.
For more information about Living Nature's natural formulations, contact our dedicated customer solutions team at firstname.lastname@example.org. Xx