This year, why not strip off the excess packaging? Plenty of beautiful massage bars, bath bombs, soaps (and more) are available completely stark naked. They’re now better for the environment while still being as brilliantly effective for you.
Down to Earth
Going naked is much better for the great outdoors and Lush customers have been doing their bit to support our naked revolution. During the festive period of 2017, you bought 780, 959 naked shower gels, body conditioners, body scrubs, body lotions, sparkle jars and lip products which meant that nearly 800, 000 pieces of packaging were never even made, let alone wasted.
You also picked up 836,288 Knot Wraps during the same period, saving over 2000 pieces of disposable gift wrap from landfill every day. Now that’s Christmas spirit.
Wondering exactly how much plastic you save by opting for a bubble bar rather than liquid bubble bath? Us too. Thankfully naked project co-ordinator and analyst Charlotte Nisbet has done the maths. She explains: “If you use roughly 75ml of bubble bath per bath and the average liquid bubble bath is sold in approximately a 500ml bottle, then you’d get about seven baths out of each bottle of bubble bath. This means that Lush customers picking up products from the Christmas 2017 range kept approximately 1,248,503 bottles out of production.”
It’s not shops that have gone naked either. When you order online, your products are popped in a recycled and recyclable cardboard box and nestled in simple nuggets made from potato starch called Eco Flo: a squashy material that can be biodegraded in both water and soil. In fact, tests conducted by Brunel University and the University of Humberside, UK concluded that Eco Flo is better at keeping products secure and protected against impact during transit than polystyrene alternatives.
Going naked also increases the likelihood of a product being self-preserving. Self-preserving means that products aren’t filled with preservatives to keep them fresh. Bacteria need certain conditions to grow, including water. Solid, naked products like body butters and massage bars are formulated with little to no water and are therefore often innately self-preserving. They are also packed full of Fair Trade organic cocoa butter which remains solid at room temperature, making it difficult for bacteria to flourish. Fantastic, versatile ingredients like clay, calamine, kaolin, honey and glycerine can then be added without altering the products’ solid form.
You can lavish your hair with the finest lathers without reaching for the bottle too. Self-preserving shampoo bars are packed with powerful natural ingredients and essential oils; the difference is that you add the water yourself by working the bars between your hands in the bath or shower at home. What this means is that each humble bar does the job of roughly three 250g bottles of liquid shampoo, giving you between 80-100 washes (depending on hair shape, thickness and length). They’re also a lot lighter and slimmer than a shampoo bottle – making them perfect for travelling.
And it’s not just in the bathroom that these solid beauties make a difference either. One lorry full of solid shampoo bars holds roughly the same number of washes as fifteen lorries filled with liquid shampoo, meaning less traffic on the roads and a lower carbon footprint.
In fact, chances are if you’ve got a favourite product, we’ve got a solid alternative that’s just as effective. Conditioners, bubble bath, deodorants, toothpaste, mouthwash and even perfume – the list is (almost) neverending.
Lush co-founder Mark Constantine said: “Packaging is rubbish and for too long we had had to suffer excessive amounts of it. Now that the true financial and environmental costs are becoming obvious, customers are challenging manufacturers and retailers to cut the wrap. Companies like ours need to think outside of the box and present customers with innovations that allow them to buy truly naked products.”
The world’s first naked shop
The biggest bid to kick plastic to the kerb so far came in June 2018, when Lush opened the world’s first Naked Lush Shop in Milan, Italy, treating customers to two floors of unpackaged cosmetics, regenerative containers, swag and Knot Wraps. Rather than scanning labels, visitors are instead scanning products using new AI product recognition technology in the form of the Lush Lens app, which delivers all the information you need straight to your smartphone. It’s one step closer to a packaging-free future that serves up the finest cosmetics for out customers and cares for the planet too.
As of 2018, 65% of Lush’s all year round products are currently totally unpackaged and naked… And the rest is on its way!