Glastonbury's stance on reducing plastic pollution, including a ban on non-biodegradable glitter, has made headlines. We have all heard of more and more plastic finding its way into the sea, and in recent reports, we discovered that glitter and microplastics are also affecting marine life and the environment.
According to North Carolina State University, it takes about 1,000 years for regular glitter (made from manufactured plastic) to biodegrade. Over 60 independent festivals have recently announced their intention to phase out single-use plastics by 2021 and ban glitter by 2020, meaning biodegradable luster is the future. Eco - Glitters for Fun's Sophie says: Festival organizers have finally banned plastic glitter and forced retailers to use it only locally. Online retailers such as Asos and Dolls Kill sell beauty products that contain it, but the range is dwarfed by items that use plastic of all kinds, and there are no plans to ban plastic glitter products.
British cosmetics brand Barry M has expanded its range of products to include biodegradable gloss. The company began developing the material in 2010 and licensed it to Eco Glitter Fun, which is stored in Selfridges, Galeries Lafayette, and Eco Stardust and sold at Aso's and Amazon. Biodegradable glitter products, however, are easily surpassed by plastic glitter, which is still sold on the brand's website.
In May, British retailer Primark launched nine beauty products, including eyeshadow palettes and lip balms that use biodegradable gloss. The Californian beauty brand Colourpop Cosmetics always brings new glitter flavors to the market and dedicates itself to the use of bio-refined glitter products on its website. Although Glitter Evolution is still a relatively small brand, it has a real specialty in the world of biodegradable glitter. Scientists have devised a project called PlaMatSu, which turns plastic glitter into a more environmentally friendly form of glitter for use in cosmetics.
According to the British glitter manufacturer Ronald Britton, the material is called PlaMatSu and consists of cellulose, derived from the eucalyptus plant. Plantations produce biodegradable gloss for sustainability. Sophie Awdry from Eco Glitter Fun tells us about their eco-glitters and biodegradable glitters.
Glitter is made from sustainably produced wood pulp and broken down in places where regular glitter, unfortunately, remains microplastic. Typically, biodegradable gloss consists of cellulose or eucalyptus tree extract, metals such as aluminum. They are biodegradable without the presence of microorganisms in the environment and can even be produced in a sustainable way using sustainable sources of wood and pulp.
Biodegradable shine is a must to show Mother Earth your love. I am not talking about glitter dumped in a landfill, which may well be the case.
Bioglitter, a biodegradable glitter company, says many others in the field are either misleading or simply lying about their environmental record. Awdry says they founded their brand because they were amazed to learn that glitter was made from plastic. They say they were disappointed, but not surprised, to discover their shine was not biodegradable.
Biodegradable glitter encouraged them to create Wild Glitter, which they created to help other festival-goers sparkle in an environmentally friendly way. Bio-glitter is the latest in a long line of eco-friendly glitter products that are the result of a collaboration between scientists at the University of California, San Diego, and the California Institute of Technology. Eco-friendlier glitter particles are small, highly reflective particles derived from plant-based materials, as opposed to plastic. Vegetable cellulose is one of the typical materials for the production of bio-glitter, eucalyptus trees being a frequent source. Their light-bending perforations and the ability to purify pollutants has inspired scientists to create bionic algae that use lasers to clean pollutants from the air, water, and soil.
To enable scientists to develop new and more environmentally friendly materials and technologies, they have turned to bioalgae and biotechnologies.
Eco Glitter Fun is the result of two festivals - loving friends whose mission is to bring responsible sparkle, plastic pollution, and awareness of the world. Eco Glitter Fun's environmentally-friendly, biodegradable, sparkling glitter product is available in six different colors.
It is sold in several colors and multi-packs and can be found on their website and offered in all possible glitter variations in children's make-up shops.