Refillable beauty products: 13 brilliant sustainable swaps to make now

  • Marie Claire is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy.
  • Meet the beauty brands that are taking steps to be a little bit more eco conscious with refillable beauty products...

    The world is slowly becoming more attuned to our need to be more conscious of the environment, particularly when it comes to the production and use of packaging. Refillable beauty products, for example, are now more prominent than ever.

    At a consumer level, it’s about taking as many steps as you’re able to in order to make your routine a bit more eco-friendly – whether that’s investing in a reusable coffee cup, reusable cotton pads or learning how to recycle beauty products properly.

    Beauty brands have also sat up in their seats and, while there’s no such thing as truly zero waste skincare brands, we’re seeing more and more reusable and refillable options on the market – a great thing for beauty addicts who want to do their bit for the planet. Many of your favourite brands now offer refills of shampoos, conditioners, bubble baths, shower gels, lipsticks, eyeshadows and more.

    So, without further ado, scroll for our rundown of brilliant brands that offer refillable beauty products, before shopping our favourites that you should have on your (eco) radar. And when you’re done here, read our guide on how to make your beauty routine more eco friendly.

    Refillable beauty products and brands to know about

    The Soap Co

    This East London cruelty-free brand is so, SO great. Each product is handcrafted here in the UK by those who are blind or disabled, giving vital employment to those who need it, and they have put a tremendous amonut of effort into design packaging that is all recycled, recyclable or compostable.

    The Soap Co realised pretty quickly how difficult it is to recycle complicated pumps from hand wash and body lotion bottles, so they created refills to avoid the pump mechanisms ending up in landfill. Simply recycle your bottle but keep the pump, and put it into a new refill bottle (which is also locally and responsibly sourced). Wonderful stuff.

    Beauty Kitchen

    These guys have been switched on to being mindful of the environment from day one, offering different schemes for both recycling and refilling their products. Any Beauty Kitchen products that are marked with their ‘Return – Refill – Repeat’ logo can be dropped off at any UK or Ireland Holland & Barret; they’ll send them off and you’ll get points on your loyalty card. Lovely stuff!

    Even better, they’ve now got a brand new refill station for your empties in the new-look Boots Store at Covent Garden, something we can’t wait to roll out nationwide. Bravo, Beauty Kitchen!


    French skin and bodycare brand L’Occitane has cemented itself as something of a sustainable champion over the past few years. To date they’ve kept more than 1,800kg of plastic out of landfill, equivalent to the weight of three cars. They’ve teamed up with TerraCycle to recycle all beauty empties – not just L’Occitane products! – in-store. Simply drop off your empties at any L’Occitane shop once they re-open, and they’ll take them away to be properly recycled for you.

    As for refillable products, many of the brand’s best selling soaps, bodycare and hair products now come in eco refill pouches. These use as much as 90% less plastic than traditional packaging, so you can keep buying your favourites without feeling quite so guilty about your plastic consumption. And, according to L’Occitane’s website, the team is currently working on replacing protective cellophane with a compostable alternative. We love to see it!

    REN Skincare

    REN has partnered with recycling powerhouse TerraCycle’s new initiative, Loop, to create refillable packaging for some of their best selling skin and body care products. This new scheme will help them achieve their pledge to be a zero waste brand by 2021.

    So, how will it work?

    refillable beauty products REN

    REN will launch cleanable, printed glass bottles with 100% recycled pumps (recycled by Loop) for six of their best selling products to start with. This will include the following:

    • Rosa Centifolia™ Cleansing Gel
    • Moroccan Rose Otto Body Wash
    • Moroccan Rose Otto Body Lotion
    • Atlantic Kelp And Magnesium Anti-Fatigue Body Cream
    • Atlantic Kelp And Magnesium Anti-Fatigue Body Wash
    • Atlantic Kelp And Magnesium Anti-Fatigue Hand Wash

    These bottles will then be refillable as and when you need – simply put the empties into a Loop Tote and they’ll pick up, clean, refill and send back to you. You can read more about the scheme, launching in the UK soon, on REN’s website.

    Keep scrolling to shop our edit of the best refillable beauty products below. Happy swapping!

    Reading now

    Popular beauty stories