July 7, 2020
Reusable and refillable products are slowly becoming the norm in the beauty industry. Although it is not something new, as shown in the documentary “The Refill Revolution” where we learn how Kao revolutionized the Japanese household and personal care market with its refill packs, there is a shift in the approach. It is not anymore a question of IF, but of WHEN and HOW will brands have reusable and refillable packaging.
Some actors in the beauty industry have decided to speed up the process, like US clean beauty retailer Credo who has implemented a packaging sustainability guidelines for its brand partners. The first phase of the guidelines stipulates that brands need to eliminate single-use masks and wipes, expand packaging take-back programs and eliminate the usage of PVC, PFAS and BPA plastic materials by June 2021. The next phase focuses on reducing the amount of virgin plastic used, with a requirement that at least 50% of any packaging needs to be replaced by recycled plastic or another sustainable material such as glass, by June 2023.
As for the HOW, many brands and manufacturers are already working on innovative ideas. They offer refillable packaging that customers long for. They know that when you refill your lipstick case, eye shadow palette, or cream jar, you still want it to look beautiful and like new. And if a product lives longer, it is not just a mere package anymore but it can be considered as an accessory. That is why beauty brands on the higher end of the market offer reusable packaging using noble, sturdy materials, beautiful design and easy refillable systems.
Here are a few examples :
Ultimately, the challenge in the refillable beauty trend is to create products that customers will want to have long term and this can only be done by combining eco-friendliness with sturdiness and beautiful design.