L’Oréal Paris’ new sustainability initiative to save 900 tonnes of new plastic in the UK

L’Oréal Paris has announced that its best-selling Elvive bottles will not only be recyclable, but will also be made from 100% recycled plastic. The new labels on the bottles will also be larger and have clearer recycling instructions.

The brand’s sustainability mission comes not only amidst a general shift in the beauty industry to reduce the amount of waste it produces, but also from research it conducted in partnership with Opinion Matters; the study surveyed 2,002 participants in the UK between the ages of 16 and 55+.

The survey found that while being plastic conscious is the main priority for UK consumers, there is still a lot of confusion around what packaging is recyclable and how to recycle properly, with 40% of the participants wanting brands to help them make a difference environmentally.

The survey also revealed that 32.8 million British consumers still struggle with the idea of recycling bathroom products and some three-quarters prioritise effectiveness over sustainability.

Responding to results from the survey that 63% of people didn’t know that the green recycle logo meant a product is widely recycled and that 87% of people would recycle more if brands made it clearer on product packaging, L’Oréal redesigned its labels on the back of the bottles so one-third of the text is dedicated to recycling instructions.

While the Elvive bottles have always been recyclable, they will now be made from 100% recyclable plastic, in that they will no longer be made from virgin plastic again.

L’Oréal said that this will save 90 tonnes of new plastic in the UK and 7,000 tonnes globally.

CSR and Sustainability Director, L’Oréal Consumer Products Division, Laure Lemarquis, said: “We are evolving Elvive inside and out. In addition to the sustainability of our bottles, we have also explored how our product on the inside could make a difference: our formulas will be using only the most effective, biodegradable and, as always, ethically tested ingredients.”

“Elvive is a good example of an end approach to sustainability at product level. From a formula with less impact on ecosystems through improvements in biodegradability, to packaging working towards circularity by using 100 percent recycled plastic whilst making it clear that a bottle is recyclable thanks to the eco-designed label. And not forgetting the production in a carbon neutral factory, an approach now used for all L’Oréal Paris Elvive products.”

According to a press release from the brand, L’Oréal is actively searching new ways to use 100% recycled plastic for every bit of the product — caps, lids, pumps, tubes, and to extend the sustainability initiative across to its makeup and skincare offering.

The brand has also committed to all plastic packaging to be either recyclable, reusable, refillable, or compostable by 2025 and to use only plastic from recycled or biobased sources by 2030.