For the beauty industry, sustainability is a critical issue, and packaging materials play a significant role in reducing the industry's impact on the environment. In this article, we will discuss how aluminum packaging, primarily aluminum bottles and jars, are more sustainable than plastic.
Importance of Packaging in Beauty and Haircare
Cosmetics and personal care industries are growing rapidly, and packaging plays a crucial role in these industries. Packaging protects the products, enhances their shelf life, and determines how the customer perceives the brand and uses the products.
For haircare brands, there are shampoos, conditioners, creams, powders, sprays, foams, serums... all different types of products that have different packaging needs because they have different applications on the hair. By eliminating excess packaging, having reusable elements such as pumps, and using sustainable bottles and jars, product lines can greatly reduce their environmental impact.
Recyclability Rates of Packaging Materials
Recyclability is an important factor in sustainable haircare brand packaging. Unfortunately, plastic recycling is not sustainable due to its complex composition. Plastic cannot be recycled infinitely as it eventually breaks down. Also, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), only 8.7% of plastic ended up getting recycled in 2018. Also in 2018, China – who used to accept half the world’s “recyclable” waste - stopped accepting imported plastic to their recycling plants. Therefore, reducing plastic use, especially single plastic use, is vital for sustainability.
Aluminum Packaging Recycling
Unlike plastic, aluminum bottles and jars are easily recyclable at most municipal recycling plants. Aluminum is 7x more likely to be recycled than plastic. Plus, aluminum bottles and jars can also be recycled an infinite number of times without losing their quality!
Aluminum is also one of the most recycled materials on earth. Almost 75% of the aluminum ever produced is still in use today! Recycling aluminum also saves 95% of the energy needed to produce new aluminum, making it a highly sustainable material. Plastic-free haircare products in aluminum packaging are a superior choice.
Aluminum Bottles vs. Aluminum Tubes
Not all aluminum packaging is created equal, though. Aluminum tubes are not as readily recyclable as aluminum bottles. They often end up in landfills, contributing to waste in the environment. Some municipalities only accept aluminum tubes that have been fully emptied and then put together into “bricks.”
Aluminum tubes, to-go containers, foil, etc., are typically not recycled because thin aluminum burns up during the recycling process. If it’s not easily sortable or recyclable, the municipalities will discard them as trash. Sustainable haircare product packaging made of aluminum bottles and jars are a better choice as they are easily sortable and recyclable.
(Are you a hairstylist or sustainable salon owner that uses aluminum foils in your color services? Check out Green Circle Salons, a program that can help you to recycle your foils and other salon waste!)
Other Aspects of Sustainable Packaging
Besides the bottle or jar, other items to consider are the label, the pump or cap, and the packing material used to pack and ship products that are ordered. At Kavella, we have switched our labels to Earthfirst PLA material, which is a biodegradable label material. When the label is removed from the bottle at the recycling plant, it does not contribute to more plastic waste like a traditional plastic label. Most of our labels have moved over to this new material, with the rest to be replaced upon all future orders. This is one way we have made Kavella a more sustainable haircare brand.
Another way is that our shampoos and conditioners, as well as several of our styling products and treatments, have the option to purchase without pumps. Therefore, if you've purchased the product once with a pump, you can then purchase future bottles with a simple aluminum disc cap, then switch over the pump to the new bottle. No single-use waste!
Lastly, the packaging we use to ship your order is composed of biodegradable starch peanuts or recycled paper, instead of styrofoam or plastic. Kavella sustainable haircare is always looking for ways we can reduce our impact on the planet!
In conclusion, aluminum bottles and jars are a more sustainable haircare brand packaging option than plastic. They are easily recyclable, contribute to aluminum's sustainability, and reduce waste. Switching to sustainable haircare packaging is a click away at www.kavella.com!
Own a salon or boutique? Choosing a sustainable salon brand in aluminum packaging is a great choice for your business! Create a PRO Kavella account today here!