Beauty in sustainability

Joanna Cuenco
·2 min read

AMONG consumer goods, beauty and personal care items are among the most challenging to produce at a sustainable level. Food can be grown slowly and regrown; clothing can be resold and reused for many years, or even recycled. But once cosmetics, shampoo, soap and the like run out, the packaging is thrown away and we have to repurchase to replenish our supply. Is it as easy as saying, “Stop buying beauty products?”

Beauty and personal care products have become ingrained in our daily lives. The beauty industry is here to stay, as the L’Oreal Group can definitively declare in its 100-plus years of existence.

In 2019, the Group generated nearly 30 billion euros in sales across its 36 brands. L’Oreal, as one of the world’s largest beauty companies, has made a serious commitment to accelerate sustainability efforts through three pillars of the L’Oreal For the Future platform:

1) Transforming itself as an industrial company.

2) Empowering its business ecosystem from suppliers

to consumers.

3) Contributing to solving the challenges of the world.

In a webinar and online press conference last week, L’Oreal Philippines discussed its focus areas for the country as part of the global goals: Sustainable e-commerce, consumer empowerment and education through the Green Beauty program, and social empowerment through its Beauty for a Better Life program. The webinar featured L’Oreal’s Supriya Singh, country managing director; Carmel Valencia, country head for corporate communication and sustainabilty; and Isabel Falco, marketing function head.

This is not to say that L’Oreal’s sustainability efforts have only just begun. In the past 15 years, the Group has reduced the carbon dioxide emissions of its plants and distribution centers by 78 percent, and in 2019, it had 35 carbon-neutral sites that use 100 percent renewable energy.

Still, every measure needs to be taken toward decelerating climate change. “This is a pivotal moment,” said chairman/ chief executive officer Jean-Paul Agon, “the moment to choose what type of world we want for tomorrow.”