Research has proven that sheet masks are just as bad for the environment as plastic straws.
The clean beauty trend is taking the world by storm. All single use items are slowly being phased out, especially the makeup removal wipes and cotton pads.
Sheet masks trend has caught on from K-beauty and now they are found everywhere, but we forget how much plastic they generate for a 20 minute ritual. “They’re unnecessary, they’re superfluous. They come wrapped in plastic,” said Lauren Singer.
It is much more sustainable to use the same serums that come in sheet masks in bottles forms. The bottles are made of glass, they are eco-friendly, last for months, and there is no wastage of the product.
“Beauty products made to use once and throw out, like makeup wipes and sheet masks, create a lot of unnecessary refuse,” Susan Stevens, the founder and CEO of Made With Respect, told Vogue. “In the case of sheet masks, there’s a pouch, the mask, and sometimes the mask is wrapped in a plastic sheet.” As none of these components are biodegradable, it’s a sheer waste.
The pouches that hold the sheet masks are a combination of aluminium and plastic which means they can’t be recycled. They eventually end up in landfills or worse, in the oceans. The masks themselves are made up of a synthetic blend of nylon and polyester. It’s equivalent to using a sheet of plastic on your face. Which also means these also are non-biodegradable.
Some brands are now making the masks from bamboo fibres instead of synthetic fibres. They also come packed in a cardboard box, which means both the packaging and the mask is recyclable. It can also be places in your compost bin and soon, it will return the nutrients to earth rather than pollute it.
Balance you habits
If a certain sheet mask is the holy grail to your skin care and you cannot do without it, balance out your habits by reducing carbon footprint elsewhere. Switch up your make-up remover wipes with an oil-based cleanser and a gauze instead of a cotton pad.
Make sure to eliminate bio accumulative ingredients from your skin care routine. Substances like silicones, triclosan, and triclocarban are not only bad for the environment, but also for the skin.