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While sustainable swaps are on everyone’s radar nowadays, one particular concern can keep want-to-be low wasters from making the switch: possible expense. Sustainability has a reputation for being expensive and, sure, it can be. But if you hunt for the right products at the right price, you can actually find a lot of swaps that are as cheap as your typical drugstore buys. Some can even save you money in the long run.
Of course, any low waster will tell you the most sustainable thing you can use is the thing you already own. But when you need replacements for your typical drugstore beauty buys, here are some products (and brands) to start with. Check out these sustainable beauty products that are just as cheap as drugstore buys. No, seriously, they are.
1. Ethique Eco-Friendly Bodywash Bar, $8.99
Ethique is a zero waste, sustainable brand using biodegradable ingredients and compostable packaging. It’s solid bar soap is silky smooth and gorgeous smelling, made with coconut oil and olive oil. The soaps are 100% vegan, cruelty-free and palm oil-free.
2. Clean Planetware Mayan Loofah, $3.50
At only $3.50, this loofah is made of 100% natural plant fiber, which is perfect for scrubbing your “tub, dishes or body,” according to the product description. The loofahs are grown without pesticides and herbicides, and are completely unprocessed.
This $10 vegan shave bar is made with olive oil, coconut oil, castor oil, shea butter and — wait for it — beer. Scented with patchouli, lavender and cedarwood, the bar works into a lather perfect for shaving.
Meow Meow Tweet is one of the big players in the sustainable, low-waste beauty space — and it’s for a reason. This stellar facial bar cleanses, tones and detoxifies the skin using French pink clay and crushed rose petals. The bar is gently exfoliating and extremely moisturizing, making it ideal for all skin types.
5. LastObject LastSwab, $12
A box of cotton swabs may be cheap, but it’s entirely wasteful. Instead, try LastSwab. The reusable swab lasts up to 1,000 uses, which will save you money in the long run — and the case and swab are both backyard compostable.
6. Axiology Lip-To-Lid Balmie, $14
This lid-to-lippie balm is actually a 3-in-1 product that can be used on eyes, lips and cheeks. Plus, it’s entirely plastic free. The balms comes in nine shades, formulated with natural oils like elderberry, hemp and plum oil.
7. EcoTools Daily Defined Eye Kit, $8.99
This EcoTools kit includes five eye brushes and a storage tray for under $10. The brushes and tray feature recycled aluminum, with the packaging is made from post-consumer recycled plastic. All components are 100% recyclable.
8. Pacifica Plant Magic Polish, $10
Pacifica’s Plant Magic nail polishes are 80% bio-sourced (a.k.a. they are made of actual plants), coming in 21 vibrant colors. The vegan polishes are 16-free, which means they are formulated without any of the harmful chemicals found in some nail polishes.
At only $10, this hemp-infused eyeshadow palette includes a combination of matte and shimmer eye shadows in super-wearable colors. The vegan and cruelty-free formula is super smooth and formulated without parabens, phthalates, talc or mineral oil.
10. Eva NYC Mane Magic 10-In-1 Shampoo, $12.99
For super soft, stronger hair, try this $13 shampoo. Formulated without sulfates or parabans, the vegan shampoo features argan oil and plant protein. It works on every hair type — and even comes packaged in an 100% recyclable aluminum bottle.
11. Pacifica Alight Clean Foundation, $16
Finding a sustainable foundation is hard — but Pacifica makes it a little easier. The brand’s Alight foundation comes in 30 shades (yes, including shades for deep skin tones). Plus, it’s formulated with hyaluronic acid for extra hydrated skin.
12. NudiGoods Plastic Free Raven Mascara, $8.75
Nudi’s Raven Mascara is a plastic-free cake mascara that sustainable beauty lovers swear by. It’s formulated with (only) shea butter, coconut oil, sustainably-sourced beeswax, bentonite clay and activated charcoal.
13. Busy Co. Refresh Face Wipes, $12
OK, so face wipes get a bad rep, especially when it comes to being sustainability. But these face wipes calm and tone skin while you’re on-the-go — or just a little lazy. Plus, they’re even compostable, making them the best option on the market.
14. Public Goods Bamboo Razor Handle, $11
The Public Goods refillable bamboo razor is only $11, plus a few bucks for a pack of blades. Compared to your average disposable razor from the drugstore, it’s incredibly economical in the long run — and a super sustainable upgrade.
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