Pure Beauty

Lush gives new life to plastic packaging with Bring It Back returns scheme

By Austyn King | Published: 15-Apr-2021

Customers can return their plastic packaging from any full-sized Lush product in exchange for a 50p deposit to spend in-store

Ethical beauty brand Lush is continuing its journey to becoming a zero-waste company with the launch of a new plastic packaging returns scheme to reward its customers for their eco-friendly efforts.

The Bring It Back returns scheme will allow customers to return their plastic empties from any full-sized Lush product to be reused for future products, and receive a 50p deposit per item to spend on their purchases in-store that day.

Today, despite an increasing amount of domestic recycling programmes worldwide, only around 9%-20% of plastics are recycled, according to research from Lush's Earthcare team.

While the majority of Lush's plastic packaging is said to be made from recycled and recyclable plastic, the brand aims to take more ownership and give new life to its range of bottles, pots and tubs with its latest initiative, according to the company.

Customers' returned packaging will be sent to Lush's UK recycling hub to be processed and sent to partners, where it will then be remoulded into new Lush pots or used as industry feedstock material.

Rae Stanton-Smithson, Earthcare Retail Communications Lead at Lush, said: “We are working hard to offer people the ultimate waste-free shopping experience.

“We continue to invent revolutionary naked products, unique packaging materials, work on reusable plastic packaging items as well as looking into refilling options for the future.”

The Bring It Back scheme joins the sustainable beauty champion's existing schemes to minimise its plastic footprint; its Fresh Face Mask scheme allows customers to bring back five items of plastic packaging to receive a free face masks, which sees more than 500,000 pots return to Lush's UK Greenhub each year, according to the company.

Meanwhile, the company also offers a Knot Swap scheme, where customers can return their Knot Wraps – Lush's eco-friendly alternative to gift wrapping services – and receive 50% off another wrap of the same size.

Stanton-Smithson added: “This recycling scheme is another step on our path to leaving the world Lusher than we found it.

“By moving towards a deposit-style scheme, whereby Lush customers know that they are ‘renting’ the packaging and can simply return it when they are finished, we keep the responsibility of waste-reduction and resource recycling as a company responsibility.

“All we need our customers to do is simply return their empties to us – we’ll take care of the rest.”

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