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Zero-waste beauty brand Mono Skincare has debuted what it claims is the world’s first skincare pastille, creating a new self-named category of “just-add-water beauty”. Made from 100% natural and vegan ingredients, the brand’s entire range of products come packaging-free and can be refilled by dissolving the tablets into its reusable bottle.
With product packaging accounting for roughly 40% of global plastic consumption, of which only 9% gets recycled, Laurie Mias decided to tackle what she thought was most wasteful in her daily routine—her skincare. As the daughter of a perfume shop owner, she’s tested, used and thrown away hundreds of beauty products.
‘Even expensive skincare still came in single-use plastic’
It’s not often a focus when it comes to single-use plastic pollution, but cosmetics and skincare make up a significant portion of our waste. 75% of women don’t finish their cosmetics before the products’ expiry date, leading to billions of disposable skincare products being trashed each year.
“I was sick of overconsumption of single-use plastic. I could not believe that even my most expensive skincare still came in single-use plastic containers wrapped in a box itself wrapped in a plastic film,” said Mias, in a recent interview.
Mias, who lives near a beach in South Lantau in Hong Kong, saw firsthand the impact of ocean plastic pollution and decided to come up with a brand that combined her passion for natural beauty with sustainability. She founded Mono Skincare, the company that recently launched what it says is the world’s first-ever skincare pastille.
Mono Skincare’s 100% natural skincare pastilles
Working with a Belgium-based dermatologist team, Mono’s entire range of cruelty-free and vegan-friendly products are made with 100% natural or EU-certified organic ingredients. The “hyper-concentrated” patented formulas contain compounds like Intutec H25P, a purified inulin that forms a smooth film over skin, a prebiotic super-moisturiser called Prebuilin AGA, and allantoin, which soothes and heals skin.
“I had to do something to show other ways of consuming beauty were possible for the same result on your skin, if not a much better one,” said Mias.
Dissolvable, refillable and packaging-free
But the sustainability part is really what makes Mono Skincare stand out. Every single one of its products, from cleansers to toners and night serum, come with no packaging. Instead, they are compressed into tablet form, each dissolvable into either Mono’s or your own refillable bottles.
Even the body mist, shampoo, deodorant, and yoga mat sprays are all tablets that can be diluted in water. This means that the brand doesn’t sell customers water or excessive packaging, and it reduces the weight of the product itself, thereby slashing emissions associated with transporting heavy liquid goods.
Customers can either purchase individual products, or opt for Mono’s subscription programs, where the brand sends refill tablet packs directly to doors. They are wrapped in aluminium, and shipped in a paper-padded mailer made from recycled fibres—in keeping with the brand’s plastic-free policy.
Currently, Mono sells on its direct-to-consumer website, with shipping available to Europe, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong, Japan, the U.S., and Australia.
“I wanted this new skincare brand to also allow us to cut back on plastic consumption, and reduce my contribution to the overabundance of plastic waste in the beauty industry,” said Mias.
Sustainable beauty picking up steam
As conscious consumerism takes hold, more beauty brands are now launching sustainably packaged or low-waste products on the market. Lush, for instance, recently introduced its “Naked” store concept to showcase its packaging-free products like shampoo bars and solid body lotions. The Body Shop, on the other hand, is currently rolling out its new global refill program and has also committed to making its entire range vegan by 2023.
All images courtesy of Mono Skincare.