Beauty

Dove is switching to bottles made from 100% recycled plastic in an epic packaging shake-up

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Amber Ascroft
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The Unilever-owned beauty brand has just unveiled one of the biggest known plastic reduction programmes in the global beauty industry.

Beauty brand Dove has today announced a huge packaging shake-up that involves switching to 100% recycled plastic bottles and plastic-free packs for its iconic Dove Beauty Bar soaps.

The ground-breaking initiative, which is thought to be the largest of its kind, will commence this year and reduce Unilever-owned Dove’s use of virgin plastic by more than 20,500 tonnes annually. That’s enough to circle the earth 2.7 times.

The new 100% recycled plastic bottles will be used across all ranges including Dove Men and Baby Dove, except in instances where the company says it is technologically unfeasible, such as caps and pumps. 

The plans also include swapping the plastic outer-wrap on multi-packs of Dove Beauty Bars for a zero-plastic material.

Dove is in the process of developing a reusable and refillable deodorant stick in a stainless steel format, too.

The announcement follows a pledge, earlier this month, from its parent company Unilever to help collect and process more plastic packaging than it sells.

Marcela Melero, Dove global skin cleansing vice president, comments: “We are passionately committed to being one of the brands making the biggest impact against plastic waste. We know we’re not perfect, but we can’t afford to wait. We’re working to have the biggest positive impact we can, as quickly as we can, and empowering others to do the same.”

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation – a charity that helps organisations improve their sustainability strategy, among other things – says it welcomes Dove’s move.

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“Better recycling alone will not solve the plastics problems we face today. We must address plastic waste at the source. 

“This means eliminating the plastic items we don’t need, innovating the ones we do need so that all of them are reusable, recyclable, or compostable, and circulating [others] by reusing them or recycling them into new products and packaging,” comments Sander Defruyt, new plastics economy lead at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

Dove’s not the only beauty powerhouse vowing to revamp its packaging. REN recently revealed it will use 100% recycled plastic in all its products by 2021.

Bath and body brand Soaper Duper also prides itself on using recycled plastic wherever possible including, like REN, in innovative metal spring-free pumps. However the company, founded by the brains behind Beauty Pie, is actively urging consumers to keep recycling their milk bottles since it has been struggling to source enough recycled plastic to keep up with demand.

It’s not just the way our beauty products are produced that makes a difference but the way we dispose of them, too. While an impressive 90% of packaging gets recycled in our kitchens, only a mere 50% has the same fate in our bathrooms, according to Recycle Now. 

Check out Stylist’s essential guide to bathroom recycling to find out how to do your bit. 

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Main Image: Unsplash  Others: Courtesy of brands

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Amber Ascroft

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