Microbeads and our Skin and the Environment - Romer Skincare

Microbeads and our Skin and the Environment

Hannah Jones & Lauren Rome Marks March 2022

Have you ever considered purchasing a product with those little scrubber beads? So many of us grew up thinking that the harsher the scrub, the better the results. Today we are going to debunk this! Not only are these products harmful for the environment, they are also harmful for your skin.

Called microbeads, those little particles are often found in skin care products and claim to exfoliate the skin. Microbeads are tiny solid plastic particles less than five millimeters in size. They have been said to act as a buffer mechanism to help remove dead skin cells, dirt and grease from the surface of the skin.

On the environmental end, as these products get rinsed off one’s face or body, microbeads travel down the drain and are often too small to be caught by water treatment plants. Since they are not biodegradable, they end up in bodies of water threatening the environment and wildlife contributing to the ‘Plastic Soup’ swirling around in our oceans, lakes, and streams. A study by Gyres Institute determined that there are nearly 330,000 pieces of plastic in one tube of facial scrub. And found an average of 43,000 plastic particles per square kilometer in Lake Erie. Over 600 species of marine wildlife are affected by plastic pollution like ingestion or entanglement and each single plastic particle absorbs up to 1 million times more toxic chemicals than the water around it! What the F!?

In addition to the impact on the environment, unfortunately these products can have a negative impact on our skin as well. All that scrubbing tends to cause more damage than it does good. The microbeads can actually cause small tears in our skin. Since our skin is sensitive, these tears leave us vulnerable to bacteria entering these holes. Scary!

Steps have been taken. As the awareness of microbeads spreads worldwide, bans have been implemented in many countries. However, despite the bans on microbeads, so many cosmetic brands continue to contain polyethylene derivative ingredients, regardless of the harm they can cause.

As a consumer, how can you ensure you are shopping for sustainable skincare products? It’s crucial we all make smart choices to reduce our impact. Read the labels of the products you are interested in and do some research into how they affect our environment. Look out and avoid ingredients such as acrylate copolymer or polypropylene (aka plastic). Support environmentally friendly brands. Invest in sustainable swaps.

Why Romer? With Romer skincare, consumers do not need to worry about microbeads or products harming our Mother Earth. Romer is plastic neutral, carbon neutral and water neutral which means we collectively offset our environmental footprint by investing in projects that eliminate waste and promote conservation. Romer practices sustainability through ingredient sourcing, product packaging, manufacturing practices and shipping. And we continue to strive towards even bigger sustainability goals in 2023. Rest assured that with Romer not only will you see results in just two weeks, but you will be investing in a company that makes the world a better more sustainable place.

 

https://www.5gyres.org/microbeads

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