Our Founder, Jo talks about the difference between organic & sustainable beauty and how the beauty industry is changing.
Over the last decade, I’ve noticed a huge shift in the beauty industry and I guess, all industries if I really think about it. Most of us will have seen the word ‘organic’ on everything from shampoo bottles to a bag of carrots and it’s something that’s often associated with natural products and high quality. On the other side, the common perception is that anything organic is going to be expensive and out of reach - some people just feel they can’t afford to switch to organic.
The Sustainables range.
From an ingredient perspective, sustainability is about efficient use of resources, however it's also about being carbon positive or carbon neutral which means that when you are creating or growing an ingredient or product, it will have a positive carbon impact, rather than a negative carbon impact on the planet.
For me, sustainability is where the natural and scientific worlds come together. Plant advanced technologies have developed a process to "milk" plants in order to obtain extracts without damaging the plants themselves, which means you can harvest them several times and also in a small amount of space (it happens in a greenhouse where you can have shelves of plants). Technically, this can’t be classed as organic, but it is the most sustainable way.
Seahorse Plankton+ range is grown in a photobioreactor (or a big greenhouse to you and me), why? Because we don’t want to take these ingredients from the endangered seahorse population. Instead, we grow our microalgae in big algae baths. This is a carbon positive ingredient as when algae is made, it absorbs sunlight and co2, releasing oxygen. This chemical process releases energy, which we sell back to the electricity grid. Our microalgae can never be classed as an organic ingredient due to the way its grown – however it is the most sustainable way to make these ingredients.
Sustainability doesn’t just start and end with ingredients: It means looking at every single element of that product’s journey, from the very first resource to someone’s bathroom cabinet - that’s the difference between between organic and sustainable.
Return•Refill•Repeat programme where customers can return their packaging back to us and we wash and reuse for the next batch. Luckily, in the last few years, people are starting to think more about reusing things - my poor coffee cup is battered and bruised I’ve had it for so long, but nowadays, I don’t get the weird looks I used to - it’s becoming the norm now, which I love!