Refillable and reusable containers, the new challenge for cosmetics

Araceli Nicolas

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First were the formulas: natural ingredients and active ‘ecofriendly’ to respect the skin, and also the environment. Now it is the turn of the packaging. European regulations that prohibit single-use plastics from this year to slow down the deterioration of seas and oceans has pushed cosmetic companies to seek new solutions. Beauty firms bet on recyclable packaging and made from recycled materials, reusable and refillable.

Dior presents the new rechargeable Sauvage.
Dior presents the new rechargeable Sauvage. – DR

The challenge of ‘refill’ (filled in Spanish) is huge for cosmetic brands, with active, sometimes unstable and sensitive in the light, in the air, etc. While the padding is most common in the perfume sector, Thierry Mugler’s sources that allow you to fill your mythical fragrances such as Angel or Alien have been working for a long time and recently Dior has presented the new Rechargeable Sauvage, in facial beauty was until now somewhat complex.

The facial serum that can already be filled

Biotherm has taken the step with a source to recharge its most emblematic product, el sérum Life Plankton Elixir. Giulio Bergamaschi, global president of Biotherm, reveals the challenges they have had to face: «the fragrances are replacement or filling solutions with proven success, as they have a high alcohol content, helping to avoid contamination of the formula due to its inherent antimicrobial properties. Skincare formulas tend to be more sensitive and composed of active ingredients».

This undoubtedly hinders the possibility of refilling. For example, in the case of Life Plankton Elixir, in addition to the patented ingredient Life Plankton ™, the formula includes the probiotic fraction in its highest concentration of 5%, hyaluronic acid and vitamin C. To ensure the quality and stability of the formula, Biotherm has worked with the Possible Future studio to create a source ‘that ensures the formula remains safe and effective. The complexity of this process ensures that the formula remains in perfect condition for use. ‘

The process of filled in of the serum, which lasts seven minutes, is complex and with various steps, like Giulio Bergamaschi: «the first step, an absolutely key point, is the process of bottle disinfection empty. Before each refill, the container is washed with purified water to completely empty it of the formula, after drying with filtered air, it is sterilized with ultraviolet light. Each bottle is then placed in the recharging zone and is filled with the Life Plankton Elixir formula. ‘ The cap and pipette from the original container are discarded.

Biotherm has a source to fill its most iconic product, the Life Plankton Elixir serum.
Biotherm has a source to fill its most iconic product, the Life Plankton Elixir serum. – DR

The Blue Fountain de Life Plankton is, at the moment, a pilot project that is available until April 1 in Madrid, in the Biotherm space of El Corte Inglés de Goya. “The idea is to expand and make this machine available at other points of sale in the future. While this specific technology is tailored to Life Plankton Elixir, we also want to create new rechargeable solutions for the other products. ‘ Biotherm offers a 15% discount on the usual price of the serum in each refill and, in addition, the packaging is personalized with a wave. «Each wave is synonymous with the new life of that container. The more waves a container has, the less containers we will be generating. In this way we want reduce the generation of plasticsCurrently, waste derived from single-use packaging represents one of the big environmental problems”Explains Biotherm’s global president.

Biotherm Life Plankton Elixir has a formula full of active ingredients such as Life Plankton ™, probiotics, hyaluronic acid and vitamin C, so the filling process is complex and has been a real challenge for the French firm, which seeks to promote a responsible consumption with this initiative.
Biotherm Life Plankton Elixir has a formula full of active ingredients such as Life Plankton ™, probiotics, hyaluronic acid and vitamin C, so the filling process is complex and has been a real challenge for the French firm, which seeks to promote a responsible consumption with this initiative. – DR

Refillable gels and shampoos

The L & # 039; Occitane Fountain allows you to fill the shower gel and hand soap from the Verbena and Verbena Citrus lines.
The L’Occitane Fountain allows you to fill the shower gel and hand soap from the Verbena and Verbena Citrus lines. – DR

Other beauty and personal hygiene brands are also targeting refillable containers. Since the end of 2019 Claudio Coello’s L’Occitane store, in Madrid, has a fountain for filling aluminum bottles with shower gel and hand soap from the Verbena and Verbena Citrus lines.

From the French brand they explain that “the fountain, made from plaster and cellulose, has a sensor mechanism, conceived with a very sensitive and precise technology, which allows exact filling ”. In addition, L’Occitane also offers the eco-refills, packaging that can be reused, saving money for the customer and contributing to reduce environmental impact.

P&G Beauty hair care brands, Pantene, h&s, Herbal Essences y Aussie, have recently presented their 100% aluminum reusable bottles and recyclable shampoo refills with 60% less plastic, than a standard shampoo bottle.

Elio Estevez, director of sustainability and scientific communication at P&G Iberia, explains that «this launch represents a change of habit in the consumerBut thanks to the ease with which the bottle can be refilled we are convinced that you will adopt this routine. This innovation save 60% plastic and it will reduce the environmental impact ”.

Germaine de Capuccini is also targeting refillable packaging.
Germaine de Capuccini is also targeting refillable packaging. – DR

The Spanish brand of natural cosmetics Freshly Cosmetics It also has the option of filled in for some of its products, such as the Nourishing Detox shower gel, the Vibrant Refreshing shampoo or the Anti-Frizz repairing conditioner. Germaine de Capuccini offers three facial care creams (Hydracure, Excel Therapy 02 and SRNS Pro 60+) accompanied by their corresponding eco-recharge, a refillable and recyclable container, which can be placed inside the original bottle. Even the singer Rihanna, which launched its new facial care line Fenty SkinAt the end of 2020, it is committed to refillable and refillable containers.

A new way of consuming cosmetics makes its way, a more sustainable way, which is based on the container reuse to generate less waste. Recycling alone is no longer enough. Now the cosmetics are oriented to the ‘refill’.

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