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May 22, 2018  |  Login

Use Refillable Cosmetics

Buying makeup in refillable containers can keep excess waste out of landfills

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While they may seem minute compared to the rest of the trash you throw out each month, cosmetic containers can really pile up—just think about the line at your cosmetics store. And just like a lot of products that typically come in disposable packaging, cosmetics can be bought in recycled or reusable containers, at no less convenience or greater cost. Refillable cosmetic containers reduce the amount of energy used to produce and ship hard plastic, glass, and chrome packaging because fewer containers need to be produced.

Many eco-friendly cosmetic companies are making their refillable containers from recyclable goods such as aluminum and post-consumer plastics, which also helps reduce waste if you choose to discard the container. Check if your favorite perfume company will re-fill your empty perfume bottles. Some companies (such as M.A.C.) even promote their recycling programs by offering free cosmetics for a certain number of returned empty containers. Other well-known cosmetic companies (such as Aveda, Stila, and the Body Shop) make empty compacts that you can customize with different blush, powder, and eye shadow shades. When you run out of one shade, you can simply buy a refill and keep reusing the container. These compacts are environmentally friendly, easy to carry, easy to use, and best of all—easy to reuse!


Take Action / Next Steps
  • Find re-usable cosmetics palettes at beauty stores such as Sephora


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Did You Know?

Click below for more facts about this tip.



1. US EPA. [January 2008] Municipal Solid Waste. Available from: [17 June 2008]

2. US EPA. [November 2007] Municipal Solid Waste Generation, Recycling, and Disposal in the United States: Facts and Figures for 2006. Available from: [18 June 2008]

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