Ring ring—this is your skincare cupboard calling. It’s time to break up with single-use plastic! Discover low to zero waste beauty swaps to green up your routine.
Ever finished a cleanser or moisturiser and been dismayed at all the plastic you have to throw away and then repeat purchase? You’re not alone. Plastic packaging is like kryptonite for beauty brands. The industry produces more than 120 billion units of packaging each year. Plus, all of this is non-biodegradable and, unless it’s properly recycled, ends up in landfills and oceans. On top of that, coffee cups have become reusable and fashion brands are finding ways to reuse leftover fabrics, but the skincare industry’s been slow to adopt zero waste options.
If brands can become vegan, cruelty-free, and certified organic, their next focus should be becoming as zero waste as possible. Let’s face it, it’s confusing if your favourite sustainable beauty brand uses ethically-sourced ingredients and still uses shrink-wrap plastic or non-recyclable bottles. The future of beauty should be solid, refillable, reusable, clean as well as toxin-free. Whether its packaging-free haircare, dental care or deodorant you’re after, scroll on for brands that are leading the charge, proving that eco-friendly and zero waste beauty can coexist.
1. Oasis Skin
Any hunt for zero waste beauty in Singapore should start at Oasis! This beauty brand’s naturally scented products are produced by hand in small batches. They also use responsibly sourced, plant-based ingredients, like cold-pressed plant oils and butter, premium clay, organic & wild-harvested essential oils and herbs. Additionally, all of their products are made using high quality ingredients from artisanal producers, and are free from parabens, sulfates and 400 other synthetic substances.
- Solid conditioner, $16
2. Bamboo Straw Girl
Bamboo Straw Girl is an earth-minded lifestyle store and a great resource for all things zero-waste for your kitchen, laundry and beauty shelves. They are the pioneers of production and sale of all-natural handmade bamboo straws and other reusables for consumers to start their low and zero-waste journeys. As the very first “zero-waste lifestyle” store in Singapore (before “zero-waste” became a buzzword), their aim has always been to be as plastic-free and low-impact, from production to point of sale. Plus, Bamboo Straw Girl explores zero waste in ways most individuals wouldn’t even know existed – from crystal deodorants, safety razors, refillable dental floss, even microfibre laundry bags that snag microplastics before ending up in oceans!
Crystal Deodorant Stone, $13.50
100% plant-based, natural and always cruelty-free, BHuman’s products are unisex and fit for all skin types. They use anhydrous formulas, aka sans water, to ensure you get a higher concentration of ingredients while lowering greenhouse emissions by reducing its transport footprint too. BHUMAN’s bottles are also made up of sustainable bamboo instead of single-use plastic and provide aluminium bottle refills.
Mini B CLEAN, $15
4. Mira Singapore
Mira is a homegrown skincare brand offering artisan soaps and skincare products that are made in Singapore in small batches. They believe in embracing the beauty of all things natural & handcrafted. All their products are formulated using skin-loving ingredients and are free from skin irritants such as parabens, SLS, phthalates and other harsh chemicals and are also vegan and palm oil-free.
- Charcoal Tea Tree Bar, $12.90
- Soap Saver Bags, $6
Lush is a global speciality beauty retailer, and their products are 100% vegetarian, 80% vegan and also have not been tested on animals. Known for their ‘naked’ packaging for various products, Lush removes useless packaging and incentivises customers to go zero-waste. The products are handmade with ingredients from around the world including fresh produce purchased from local farms to shea butter sourced from women’s cooperatives in Ghana.
- Movis Facial Soap, $25
6. Rough Beauty
Rough Beauty is a Singapore based artisan brand featuring handcrafted bath and body products, with simplicity and sustainability in mind. The brand name was inspired by the rugged terrain and haunting beauty of the majestic Himalayan mountains. They use only quality natural ingredients, plant essential oils, herbs and spices for scents and colours in all their products, free from synthetic fragrances, colours, sulphates and parabens. They also handcraft their products in small batches in Singapore.
- scruffy cleansing grains scrub, $14.90
- ashberry bar soap, $9.50
- petal soft set, $22.40
7. Noice Toothpaste
Noice is a dental brand, that aims to replace 1.5 billion toothpaste plastic tubes with a clean, natural & zero-waste alternative. They take the best of nature to develop effective, natural, sustainable oral care products that are good for your teeth as well as for the planet. Combining vegan and zero-waste, Noice wanted to offer a better toothpaste solution that would also tackle all aspects of sustainability. The brand uses recyclable glass bottles, which you can swap at your local retail store when they’re empty.
Anti-Plaque Charcoal Toothpaste, get your trial bottle for $4.95
8. Handmade Heroes
An all-natural, vegan and super affordable skincare brand that promises no fillers, no nasty chemicals, and no animal by-products in your skincare. Handmade Heroes are PETA Cruelty-Free and Vegan, this means that they do not use any animal or animal by-products in their ingredients nor do they test on animals. Instead of using animal-derived ingredients, the brand uses nourishing natural botanical oils and plant-derived ingredients.
- Cocolicious Luscious Lip Mask, $12.90
- Beauty Warrior Face Mask Kit, $35.90
9. The Social Space
The Social Space is a socially conscious multi-concept cafe, located in both Kreta Ayer and Marina One (their Marina One store is also the home of our concept space, Zerrin Lounge!) Featuring a tea bar & café, a fair trade retail area and a nail salon, you can find plenty of zero waste beauty and reusable products for your daily routine; from deodorant bars and solid shampoos. You can even use their refillery, which carries premium brands from Australia and New Zealand, for dishwashing detergent, shampoo and even pet shampoo.
- Ecostore body wash refill, $7.29
- Biologika shampoo refill, $8.64
Shop the rest | Read about the brand | Follow them
Cult skincare brand Aesop needs no introduction. They’re known for their exceptional skin, hair and body care products, packaging and store design. Their formulations are made with meticulous attention to detail, and with efficacy and sensory pleasure in mind. They source ingredients from the most reputable suppliers across the globe, then marry contemporary technology with long-established scientific practices. All Aesop products are vegan and also do not test their formulations or ingredients on animals. Their Rinse and Return Initiative launched in Singapore encourages residents to return aluminium, glass, and plastic cosmetic packaging to Aesop signature stores for future recycling. For each Aesop container returned, they donate SGD$1 (up to a total of SG$10,000) to Zero Waste SG.
Geranium Leaf Duet, $163
11. Frank Skincare
Frank Skincare was developed as a 100% organic solution to try and improve the founder’s skin condition. They carefully source each top-grade natural active ingredient from different parts of the world, making sure they are packed with genuine benefits and also avoid harmful chemicals. Their product line includes luxe cleansers, hydrating mists as well as nourishing face oils for all skin types. Unlike mass-produced skincare which contains synthetic chemicals to extend the product shelf life, Frank creates small batches of product to ensure quality and freshness in their skincare. They also sell reusable skin cloths and cotton swabs for you to swap out your disposables.
This brand is certified organic by international organisations Australian Certified Organic (ACO).
- Reusable swabs, $8
Shop the rest | Read about the brand | Follow them
Jomingo is a vegan and zero waste beauty brand creating packaging-free deodorant. They use natural ingredients such as candelilla wax, cold-pressed coconut oil, cocoa butter and more oils that make them suitable for even sensitive skin suffering from rashes. Their packaging uses biodegradable FSC-certified material. The brand sources premium ingredients from countries such as Vietnam, Thailand, and Malaysia and studies each of them carefully to ensure they are not toxic in any way, to any animal or person.
13. Coconut Matter
Coconut Matter is a natural beauty brand crafting the best performing products from natural, vegan ingredients, and without testing on animals. Their core ingredient is fair-trade, organic, virgin coconut oil that provides a livelihood, as well as improved wellbeing for rural Solomon Island communities. They don’t use any plastics and also work on closing the loop on how their products are made, packaged and delivered.
Coconut Sudsy Delight Smarter Pack, $43.36 on sale
Sleep Well Coconut Body Butter, $34.69
BLISS Natural Deodorant, $24.39
RdytoGlow handcrafts vegan soaps, shampoo bars and beauty products as well as carry eco accessories. They use natural ingredients that are vegan and have no nasties. They’re dedicated to using packaging that’s biodegradable or recycled and encourage consumers to recycle or reuse them to reduce their single-use plastic waste. The founder was inspired to design cold process soap as they are made with all-natural and skin-loving ingredients, and also avoid artificial fragrances and harsh chemicals.
3 Soap Bundle Set, $35
Unpackt is a home-grown social enterprise offering package-free bulk food, products and daily necessities that you need to live a zero-waste lifestyle. They are the first zero-waste bulk store in Singapore, where customers are encouraged to BYO containers and buy what they need, to also avoid wasting excess packaging or food. They stock eco-friendly health, beauty and toiletries products, also including packaging-free shampoo bars, refillable makeup sets and castille soaps.
- Cotton Facial Rounds, $12 for 5
4-In-1 Cheek-N-Lip Multi-Stick Set, $58, buy the refill for $10
16. The Sustainability Project
The Sustainability Project is a Singapore-based business that aims to encourage and inspire the adoption of a low or zero waste lifestyle. Their blog is also a great resource for tips on how to lead a sustainable lifestyle, chats with other green business owners and any other relevant information about sustainability. They also encourage businesses to adopt a circular packaging system, provide support and recognise businesses who reduce their waste through these means.
- Tooth Powder 50g, $8
17. Tata Harper
Tata Harper is a natural makeup and beauty brand that pioneered the farm-to-face concept with impeccable standards of efficacy, quality, and purity. Additionally, the brand makes natural skin care products made in small batches in Vermont, led by an all-female lab. Their ingredients are either grown in Vermont or sourced around the world, and the brand is certified cruelty-free. Highly recognizable by their green glass bottles, they’re also a way to encourage consumers to reuse and recycle and also offers refills.
Clarifying Cleanser, $103.50
Resurfacing Serum, $125.30
Water-Lock Moisturizer, $92.60, get the refill for $84.40
18. W.ANT Skincare
W.ANT Skincare is a 100% natural ethical skincare brand. They decide on product formulation with pure botanicals and minerals, which are also waterless. From farm to skin, WANT’s ingredients come directly from farms or through co-ops. Their products use specific ingredients for different purposes – from plant-based oils such as Rosehip and Neroli that promote skin health, skin nourishers like Raw Honey, to natural exfoliants such as French Green or Bentonite clay.
Beet This Honey, $59
The Eye Oil, $69
The Facial Spritzer, $29
Shop the rest | Read the founder’s interview | Follow them
Ethique is a zero waste beauty brand from New Zealand on a mission to rid the world of plastic bottles. This certified climate-neutral, cruelty-free BCorp has saved over 10 million plastic bottles from being made or disposed of in landfills to date. Ethique’s bars are all 100% plastic-free, certified cruelty-free and vegan and certified palm oil free; no bottles, no harsh chemicals. What’s more, their products contain nothing but great formulations in high concentration, and their bars last 2 to 5 times longer than liquid products! In Singapore? You can find their products at your nearest Watson’s!
- Frizz Wrangler Shampoo Bar for Normal to Dry Hair, $21.51
- Pink In-Shower Container (Keep Shampoo and Conditioner Bars Dry), $24.21
All prices are in SGD unless mentioned otherwise.
With a background in fashion and textiles, Durva is an ardent photographer and advocate of social justice. She enjoys writing about fashion, socio-political issues within sustainability and partakes in the occasional 'who wore it better' banter on Diet Prada.