13 - 16 February 2024 // Nürnberg, Germany


Plastic-free cosmetics?

Elfriede Dambacher, Owner naturkosmetik konzepte
Elfriede Dambacher, Owner naturkosmetik konzepte // © Elfriede Dambacher, naturkosmetik konzepte

It isn’t really that much of a surprise, and yet it’s hard to imagine: Plastic debris is even showing up in the Arctic. The oceans are full of plastic debris and we know that it’s doing damage. This news reminded me once again of how serious the issue really is. Even if I don’t throw any cosmetic jars in the ocean, I’m still affected.

There’s currently a lot being written about recycled packaging for personal care products and cosmetics shelves already hold many products in recycled plastic bottles. But is that the solution? It sound so simple. Just make the bottles more eco-friendly and the beauty industry is off the hook. Far from it!

But is it all show and no substance? When you buy shampoo in a bottle made of recycled plastic with a label stating that the contents are 100-percent biodegradable, it seems like you’ve done your duty – but the devil is in the details. Consumers don’t recognize that it can still contain a lot of microplastic. Lots of the claims are just window dressing, they refer to one positive aspect and avoid the overall picture.

Bioplastics, recyclable packaging, and bottles made from 100-percent recycled plastic are all indicators that some things have changed. It’s good that the entire cosmetics industry is focusing more on the issue of packaging and is looking for alternatives. It’s also good that at least some of the jars and tubes are being recycled. But that’s not enough. Packaging has to be reduced overall, which also means that products have to change. The trend toward water-free products and concentrates are examples of this.

I’m looking forward to the summer edition of VIVANESS from 26 to 29 July, 2022, and discovering what’s new in the area of packaging.

As for my daily life, I try to do a better job of squeezing out my tubes and choosing products that feature innovative and creative packaging solutions.

Elfriede Dambacher, owner of the Naturkosmetik Konzepte consultancy, is an international cosmetics industry expert and author www.naturkosmetik-konzepte.de

Note: Because Hall 3C is currently being used as an emergency shelter for Ukrainian refugees, trade visitors will find the 2022 summer edition of VIVANESS in Halls 8 and 9 of the exhibition venue.

VIVANESS won’t be alone in focusing on packaging in Hall 8. The offerings of “Unverpackt” (Unpacked) will also be presented, combined for the first time.