Wondering where to find the best zero waste skin care products?
It’s not always easy to find high-quality products that work for both your skin and the planet.
The beauty industry is notorious for its use of single-use plastic, the majority of which isn’t recycled—making your bathroom the perfect place to start when switching to a low-waste lifestyle.
So, what eco-friendly beauty brands would we happily welcome into our bathrooms and gym bags for a zero waste skincare routine?
Our Favorite Zero Waste Skincare Brands For A Plastic-Free Complexion
Luxury meets low-impact with Natural Wisdom Spa’s small-batch skincare range made from cold-pressed oils and nourishing natural ingredients, elegantly packed into Miron violet glass jars or beautiful handmade wooden pots.
For zero waste moisturizing, Ethique ticks every one of our sustainability boxes with its cruelty-free, vegan, and plastic-free skin care products. They’re a carbon-neutral company, plant a tree for every order, and donate 2% of sales to charity.
Flawless Beauty Store keeps your complexions and consciences clean with handmade PETA-approved products packaged in refillable and recyclable containers.
Fortunately, there are an increasing number of zero waste skincare brands. If you’re looking for organic oils, sustainable serums, planet-friendly face wash, or wondering “what stores are like Ethique?” read on for our full list.
Alternatively, jump down to the bottom of the article to find how we picked these brands.
1. Empire Squid Organics
Price Range | $8–$82 | Shop Empire Squid Organics
Values | Cruelty-free, organic
Ingredients | Natural, non-toxic, cruelty-free, palm-oil free, and mostly certified organic ingredients. Not all products are vegan, as some contain beeswax but can be made vegan on request.
What We Love | This quirky family-run brand offers handmade to order, minimally processed products for all the family. Not only is their skin care zero waste, but they take great care to ensure that no chemical nasties end up in their all-natural formulas by carefully sourcing their ingredients.
Empire Squid’s Low Waste Skincare
For zero waste skincare USA, this Californian brand has plenty to offer. Their range includes facial oils, body butter, beard oil, cleansers, toners, sunscreen, a Mama range, and a baby range, all made with natural, nourishing ingredients.
Their Face Food facial moisturizer comes in three versions: Original, Anti Aging, and Dry Skin, so that you can choose the best one for your skincare needs.
The Original version contains a dreamy blend of unrefined organic shea butter, organic jojoba oil, and organic argan oil and is lightly scented with soothing lavender and geranium essential oils.
Have sensitive skin that means you want to avoid essential oils?
Just let them know. The same goes if you want the beeswax switched to candelilla wax.
If you’re interested in doing some zero waste skin care DIY, their Squidlet collections sell essential and raw oils, so you can mix up your own magic.
Empire Squid’ Sustainability
Certifications | Certified Organic (certifying body not specified, so we’ll be reaching out to check).
Thoughtful Packaging | Products are housed in recyclable glass containers, but some do have a plastic lid. Orders are shipped in recyclable zero waste packaging.
Price Range | $5–$30 | Shop Ethique
Values | Cruelty-free, vegan, palm oil free, organic
Ingredients | Ethically sourced, natural, non-toxic, plant-based, biodegradable, cruelty-free, palm-oil free, and vegan.
What We Love | This New Zealand-based Certified Corp brand has been a firm favorite of ours ever since they first released their shampoo bars. They offer a range of plastic-free skincare and haircare products so you can scrub up sustainably.
Ethique’s Zero Waste Skincare
Ethique offers a complete range of plastic-free skincare products, including facial cleansers, moisturizers, scrubs, lip balms, body wash, and soap.
For a plastic-free facial moisturizer, one of our favorite Ethique products is the Perfector™ Hydrating Solid Face Cream. If you have balanced to dry skin like we do, it’s the perfect lightweight moisturizer that never leaves us feeling too greasy.
Packed with nourishing, plant-basedl ingredients, including wild-harvested Babassu oil, jojoba, and kokum butter, this face cream is designed to smooth and hydrate. Ideal for use as a daily moisturizer or nourishing overnight cream, it comes in a home compostable cardboard tube.
Certifications | Certified B Corp, Leaping Bunny cruelty-free by Cruelty Free International, PETA cruelty-free and vegan, Not Tested On Animals by Choose Cruelty Free.
Ethical Sourcing | Where possible, Ethique enters into direct trade partnerships with their ingredient suppliers to ensure fair prices and safe working conditions,
Carbon | Ethique is carbon-neutral certified. They offset emissions by partnering with Ecologi and other organizations. They offset all staff travel and their team’s personal travel too! Their head office uses 100% renewable energy. To cut down on emissions from international freight, they’ve opened regional warehouses in the UK, USA, and Australia.
Thoughtful Packaging | Ethique’s sustainable packaging consists of compostable cardboard boxes and tubes made from PEFC-certified paper. Shipping packaging is also home compostable, apart from the labels, which they are working on.
Pay It Forward | This big-hearted brand plants one tree for every order via its partnership with Ecologi and donates 2% of all sales to environmental and wildlife conservation organizations, including Wildlife Warriors and Rainforest Trust.
3. Natural Wisdom Spa
Price Range | £2–£97 | Shop Natural Wisdom Spa
Values | Vegan, cruelty-free, organic, palm oil free
Ingredients | Natural, biodegradable, and certified organic.
What We Love | Keeping it pure for both our skin and the planet, Natural Wisdom Organic’s luxurious and low-impact range is made from high-quality, cold, pressed, and CO2-extracted oils. Products are handmade in small batches by founder Maeve who has an extensive background in natural health.
Natural Wisdom Spa’s Plastic Free Skincare
If you’re looking for zero waste skincare in the UK, Natural Wisdom Organics’ luxury range is hard to beat. You’ll find plenty of small-batch balms, moisturizers, oils, and serums, all cold-processed to preserve their antioxidant properties.
The Solace Antioxidant Cream Serum is full of plant-based nourishing ingredients, including organic shea butter, pomegranate and raspberry seed extracts, rosehip, calendula, and chamomile.
In other words, “solace for the skin”.
Choose between the unscented or “Wisdom” version—the brand’s signature blend of cedarwood, patchouli, sweet orange, and ylang ylang essential oils.
Natural Wisdom Spa’s Sustainability
Certifications | Certified Organic (we’ll be checking on the certifying body), Ecocert COSMOS Approved
Carbon | All products are handmade to order by a one-woman team, avoiding waste and keeping emissions low. Etsy orders are 100% carbon offset.
Thoughtful Packaging | Natural Wisdom Organic’s zero waste luxury skincare products are housed in Miron™ violet glass jars with metal lids or stunning, handmade cedarwood pots.
Price Range | £3–£35 | Shop Flawless
Values | Cruelty free, vegan, palm oil free
Ingredients | All natural plant-based ingredients that are cruelty-free, palm oil free, and vegan.
What We Love | This zero waste skincare UK brand does plastic-free packaging to a T. All products are handmade in a North Wales studio using essential oils, vitamins, and antioxidant oils chosen for their skincare benefits.
Flawless’ Zero Waste Skincare Products
You’ll find micellar water, facial toner, facial oil, lip balm, body wash, sugar scrub, and more.
Multi-use products are our favorites for a low-waste skincare routine.
The Beauty Balm can be used as a facial cleanser, daily moisturizer, or overnight face mask.
Made with simple ingredients, including argan oil, macadamia oil, rosehip oil, and essential oils of bergamot, frankincense, and neroli, this all-in-one balm is formulated to protect, nourish, and rejuvenate your hard-working skin.
Certifications | PETA Cruelty-Free and Vegan
Thoughtful Packaging | Flawless’ zero waste skincare products come in refillable and recyclable containers made from recycled glass or aluminum. Orders are shipped in plastic-free packaging using biodegradable cornstarch packing peanuts and paper tape.
5. Bee You Organics
Price Range | $11–$114 | Shop Bee You Organics
Values | Cruelty-free, organic, and palm oil free
Ingredients | Natural, non GMO, cruelty-free, palm oil free, alcohol-free, gluten-free, and mostly organic. Note that many of their products contain beeswax, so they are not vegan.
What We Love | Bee You Organics keeps it simple with minimal ingredient lists and minimal skincare packaging. They use recognizable ingredients that are safe for sensitive skin.
Bee You Organic’s Low Waste Skincare
For natural make-up, skincare, and hair care, this brand’s range has us buzzing.
Looking for a zero waste skincare exfoliator?
The Organic Shea Sugar Scrub is made with simple, natural ingredients, including unrefined shea butter and organic cane sugar, to exfoliate, rejuvenate, and soften your skin.
Bee You Organic’s Sustainability
Certifications | USDA Certified Organic
Ethical Sourcing | Organic beeswax is responsibly sourced from their own hives or local Pacific NorthWest bee farmers. The mica for their make-up is also locally and ethically sourced.
Carbon | Bee You Organic’s products are anhydrous (they don’t contain any water). This means concentrated products that last much longer.
Thoughtful Packaging | If you have a bee in your bonnet about plastic waste, no sweat. This brand prioritizes reusable aluminum tins and glass jars with metal lids. They offer a no label option to reduce packaging even further, and shipping is also plastic-free.
Pay It Forward | Bee You Organics donates to various local and national causes.
Price Range | $4–$65 | Shop EcoRoots
Values | Cruelty-free, vegan
Ingredients | All-natural, cruelty-free, and vegan. Most products are palm oil free.
What We Love | Colorado-based EcoRoots is a one-stop shop for all things zero waste, skincare included. Everything is handmade in the US and shipped without plastic.
Ecoroots’ Zero Plastic Skincare
For zero waste skincare USA, Colorado-based EcoRoots has you covered. Their collection includes cleansers, toners, face masks, moisturizers, oils, soaps, deodorants, lip balms, shaving kits, and more.
For a plastic-free pout, their Zero Waste Lip Balm is made from nourishing, plant-based, and mostly organic ingredients, including coconut oil, wildcrafted candelilla wax, jojoba oil, vitamin E, and rosemary leaf extract.
Choose between four different versions: Mint, Natural, Strawberry, and Tinted, that all come in a compostable cardboard tube.
We’ve adopted numerous EcoRoots products into our low waste skincare routine and are always impressed by how effective, concentrated, and long-lasting they are.
Certifications | Certified Organic (we need to check on the certifying body).
Ethical Sourcing | EcoRoots are committed to responsible sourcing.
Thoughtful Packaging | Products are housed in reusable and recyclable glass jars or compostable cardboard. All orders are shipped using only cardboard and paper.
7. Plaine Products
Price Range | $6–$70 | Shop Plaine Products
Values | Cruelty-free, vegan, palm oil free, non-toxic
Ingredients | Non-toxic, cruelty-free, palm oil free, and vegan. All ingredients are checked with the Environmental Working Group (EWG) to ensure they are non-toxic.
What We Love | This sister-owned brand scores top sustainability marks across the board for their vegan zero waste skincare line that comes in refillable minimalist aluminum bottles. Simply send back your empties to be cleaned and refilled in your order’s box, making for just about the closest thing to package-free skincare as you can get.
Plaine Products’ Zero Waste Skin Care
Plaine Products keeps it plain and simple with their line of zero waste minimal hair and skincare products.
For the face, you’ll find a toner, face wash, and face moisturizer; for the body, you’ll find a body wash and body moisturizer—all of which we’ve tested and love, by the way.
They also offer a multi-use Beauty Oil for bodies, face, and hair. It’s packed full of natural, vegan ingredients, including sunflower seed oil, grape seed oil, olive-derived squalane, and jojoba, chosen to nourish skin and hair.
Plaine Products’ Sustainability
Certifications | Certified B Corp, Leaping Bunny cruelty-free
Ethical Sourcing | All ingredients are responsibly sourced.
Thoughtful Packaging | Products come in refillable aluminum bottles, which are also recyclable if you choose not to send them back for a refill.
Pay It Forward | This 1% for the Planet member gives back to organizations working to clean up our planet, including Plastic Ocean Project and Beyond Plastics. They also hold an annual Give Back Friday in aid of various environmental organizations.
8. Battle Green
Price Range | £2–£49 | Shop Battle Green
Values | Cruelty-free, vegan, organic
Ingredients | Natural and organic ingredients
What We Love | North Wales-based Battle Green is a one-stop shop for zero waste swaps for home and travel. Their skincare collection is handmade in small batches, and they offer several eco-friendly gift sets and hampers.
Battle Green’s Plastic-Free Skin care
You’ll find lip balms, natural deodorant, shampoo and conditioner bars, shampoo powder, face masks, toothpowder, and soap.
Bring some pampering to your zero waste skincare routine with a Natural Clay Face Mask containing a blend of plant powders and natural clays packaged in a compostable sachet.
Choose between award-winning Beetroot Rose, Cocoa Ginger, and Chamomile, or try all three with the Natural Clay Face Mask Gift Set that comes with a coconut shell bowl and wooden mixing spoon.
Battle Green’s Sustainability
Certifications | Cruelty-free and vegan by PETA, Certified Organic (we’ll be checking the certifying body).
Thoughtful Packaging | No plastic to see here. Instead, you’ll find cardboard sachets and tubes, aluminum tins, and naked bars. All orders are shipped plastic-free.
Pay It Forward | Battle Green has partnered with Ecologi to offset shipping emissions and to plant a tree for each starter kit sold. They’re also members of the Surfers Against Sewage 250 Club and donate £1 to Freshfields, an animal rescue charity, for every Reusable Gift Wrap sold.
9. Meow Meow Tweet
Price Range | $12–$30 | Shop Meow Meow Tweet
Values | Cruelty-free, vegan, palm oil free, organic
Ingredients | Natural, organic, non-GMO, cruelty-free, palm-oil free, gluten-free and vegan. Their cocoa butter, coconut oil, shea butter, and sugar are fairly traded.
What We Love | Founded by vegans, Meow Meow Tweet takes a “slow food approach to skincare”. Their zero-waste and plant based skincare are handmade in small batches using high-quality, responsibly sourced ingredients.
Meow Meow Tweet’s Low Waste Skin Care Products
With a complete range of face, body, and hair care products, Meow Meow Tweet’s gender-neutral collection takes care of all bodies, from head-to-toe.
For a zero waste face moisturizer that ticks all the boxes, their Rosehip Chia Face Oil is full of antioxidants and nourishing natural ingredients, including rosehip, jojoba, chia, and chamomile oil to help repair skin and reduce inflammation.
Meow Meow Tweet’s Sustainability
Certifications | Certified B Corp, Leaping Bunny cruelty-free, USDA Organic, Climate Neutral Certified, Plastic Negative Certified.
Ethical Sourcing | This zero waste luxury skin care brand supports women-owned and operated suppliers and several of their ingredients are Fair Trade. They support regenerative farming and carefully source their renewable plant ingredients so as not to negatively impact wild habitats and food sources.
Carbon | Meow Meow Tweet is carbon-neutral and their bulk refill program follows a circular business model. Send back your empty bulk containers and they’ll clean and reuse them.
Thoughtful Packaging | Not only do they use reusable metal bottles, glass jars, and compostable cardboard, but a packaging redesign helped them cut the amount of paper they use by 60%. MMT partners with rePurpose Global to offset the amount of plastic they do use.
Pay It Forward | Meow Meow Tweet donates to a different organization each month, choosing recipient organizations that align with their values.
10. River Organics Beauty
Price Range | $3–$40 | Shop River Organic Beauty’s Range
Values | Cruelty-free, vegan, palm oil free, organic
Ingredients | Cruelty-free, palm oil free, vegan, and natural, without around 75% of ingredients being organic.
What We Love | Husband and wife-founded River Organics is a North Carolina-based make up brand committed to natural, organic, and non-toxic formulas housed in planet-friendly packaging.
River Organic’s No Waste Skincare
Make up meets nourishing skincare with River Organic’s range of blush sticks, concealers, eyebrow wax, lip balms, highlighters, and more.
The Zero Waste Concealer provides a lightweight, buildable coverage while nurturing your skin with organic apricot kernel, moringa seed, and camellia seed plant oils.
Available in eight different colors, it also provides a flawless finish for the planet with its compostable paper pot.
If your lips need some TLC, check out the Nourishing Lip Balm. Made with five simple ingredients, including cacao and mango butter, this ultra-hydrating balm will keep your lips in tip-top condition.
River Organic’s Sustainability
Certifications | Leaping Bunny cruelty-free, Certified Organic (we need to check on the awarding body).
Ethical Sourcing | The mica in their make-up is “Lab-made and conflict-free.”
Thoughtful Packaging | All of their products come in 100% compostable paper packaging. The sugar cane labels are also compostable and orders shipped without plastic.
11. Friendly Soap
Price Range | £2–£20 | Shop Friendly Soap
Values | Cruelty free, vegan
Ingredients | Natural, cruelty free, palm oil free, vegan,
What We Love | This award-winning UK brand offers some of the friendliest soap – for the planet and your pores. All their bars are cold-pressed, using natural, vegan ingredients, non-plastic packaging, and a low-energy production process.
Friendly Soap’s Zero Plastic Skincare Products
For plastic-free skincare UK, Friendly Soap is your new best friend. With soap bars, facial cleansing bars, and shaving bars, they have plenty of options for low-impact lathering.
They offer two dedicated facial cleansing bars – Shea Butter and Cocoa Butter. Made with four very simple ingredients (cocoa butter/shea butter, olive oil, coconut oil, and water) they’re ideal for sensitive skin and won’t strip your skin of its natural oils.
For body soap, they offer an enticing selection of scents, including Orange & Grapefruit, Patchouli & Sandalwood, Tea Tree & Turmeric, as well as an unscented bar. If you can’t decide which scent to go for, you can try four at a time in one of their selection boxes.
Friendly Soap’s Sustainability
Carbon | Cold processing of the soap means less energy is used (and no by-products). Friendly Soap has partnered with Good Shipping to support the switch to sustainable biofuel.
Thoughtful Packaging | Soaps are packaged in recycled and recyclable cardboard and shipped without plastic
Pay It Forward | Friendly Soap supports Forus Tree’s tree-planting and conservation work with paid team volunteer days. They regularly donate to Just a Drop to support clean water and sanitation projects around the world.
How Did We Choose These Zero Waste Skin Care Brands?
What is zero waste skin care?
In its more pure sense, it would be zero skincare, period—but that’s not realistic for most of us!
In a (sustainably grown) nutshell, we looked for products that help us look after our skin without littering the planet in the process. Think refillable, recyclable containers and home compostable packaging.
What’s inside that zero waste packaging and how it fits into the overall green beauty movement is important, too.
That’s a lot of boxes to tick, and the best news is that an increasing number of low waste skincare brands are nailing it.
Here are the different things we looked:
B Corporation (B Corp), Climate Neutral Certified, Ecocert COSMOS Approved, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), Cruelty Free International (Leaping Bunny or Choose Cruelty Free), US Department of Agriculture (USDA Organic), Vegan Society, Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), Plastic Negative
Note that quite a few zero waste skin care brands didn’t specify the certifying body for their organic ingredients, so we’ll update the article when we have more info.
We like it when ingredient lists are simple and short. The best zero waste skincare products are made with natural, non-toxic, plant-based, easily recognizable ingredients, i.e., no numbers or codes to look up!
Anhydrous products are also a win-win for our skin and the planet. Why is waterless skincare good?
They’re more concentrated, meaning a little goes a long way. Waterless products need less packaging, and the reduced shipping weight results in a lower carbon footprint.
Instead of water, the brands on our list that offer anhydrous products fill them with high-quality ingredients like cold-pressed oils and plant extracts.
Brands that prioritize fair trade ingredients get a thumbs up, as do those who ensure their plant ingredients are sustainably grown and harvested.
Beyond no plastic packaging, we looked for low waste skincare brands taking steps to reduce their carbon footprint through low-energy production methods, the use of renewable energy, carbon offset programs, or refill programs that support a circular business model.
Package-free skincare is the bee’s knees. Think: naked soap, shampoo bars, and moisturizing bars.
Minimal skincare packaging such as home compostable paper and cardboard, is the next best.
Refillable and reusable glass and aluminum tins and bottles provide a zero waste alternative to plastic containers. Bonus points to brands that ensure the labels are recyclable or compostable, too.
Pay It Forward:
Just a clear complexion from zero waste acne skin care, big-hearted brands that give back put a smile.
Closing Thoughts On Zero Waste & Plant-Based Skin Care
Real beauty goes beyond skin deep.
The impact of skincare products extends well beyond our bathrooms. By choosing cruelty-free, vegan, responsibly sourced, ethically manufactured, and minimally packaged products, we can help make the world a more beautiful place beyond our bathroom vanity.
Do you know someone looking to upgrade their zero waste beauty routine?
Share this article with them and help spread the word about brands who are showing the planet and our skin some TLC.