Beauty / personal care

Looking for plastic-free beauty products and personal care items? Check out the TalkPlastic directory of plastic-free alternatives.

If you want even more inspiration, take a look at our ‘Plastic-free Beauty’ Pinterest board here.


Cotton buds don’t need to be plastic – GoBamboo makes bamboo ones. Click here for GoBamboo stockists. The company also sells bamboo toothbrushes and clothes pegs.


Buying cotton wool in plastic bags not only ramps up your plastic footprint but cotton itself is the most pesticide intensive crop in the world – so why use it just once and throw it away?

  • If using cotton wool to remove nail varnish, cut up and use an old sock or find an unwanted rag. If they were going to be thrown away anyway, it’s worth finding one final use for them.
  • For makeup and wiping purposes, consider making your own fabric rounds that you can put in the wash and reuse over and over again. They’re amazing! To buy reusable cotton rounds, head to Etsy or one of our wonderful TalkPlastic members here in Melbourne makes bamboo/organic cotton fleece rounds complete with laundry bag and eco-friendly gift wrapping. If you’d like to buy some, contact us and we will forward the message on.


Dental floss isn’t plastic free: it can contain nylon, teflon, synthetic wax. See this blog post for more details. Bathroom products always present a challenge when looking for plastic-free alternatives, and dental floss is one of the trickiest.  The best options we could find were:

  • Eco-denT Gentle Floss. Vegan waxed (no petro-waxes or bees wax), cardboard packaging (that’s patented) and 100 yards of the stuff. Many online retailers in Australia stock them, such as Sydney’s Lotus Health.
  • Stim-U-Dent Plaque Removers.  Made from timber from managed forests, these are available from a few different online retailers, but we vote for the NZ/Aus people at Fishpond. Unfortunately they have to be shipped here from the US, so they aren’t cheap!


  • There are a many lip salves on the market that come in a tin. Try Lush Cosmetics or pick up a classic Vaseline with SPF – these are made using petroleum, though. US company Juniperseed on Etsy has a gorgeous range of vegan lip balms in a mini cardboard tube.


  • Invest in reuseable cotton rounds (see above) and use these in conjunction with water or a natural remover like coconut oil, available in glass jars.


  • Lush sells a range of facial moisturisers. They’re not plastic free but they do come in BPA free 100% post-consumer recycled plastic. If you save five tubs, you can trade them in for a free Fresh Face Mask. If buying online, remember to ask for no plastic in your postal packaging.
  • Try making your own moisturiser and storing it in a reusable container. There are lots of recipes online – here is a good place to start.


Don’t buy liquid shampoo in plastic bottles, there are plenty of solid shampoo bars on the market:

Bulk buy stores often sell shampoo that you can take home in your own containers.There are also plenty of homemade recipes for shampoo that can be found online.


  • New Zealand eco rock stars GoBamboo have created incredible bamboo toothbrushes. Once you try one, there’s no going back! Click here for the GoBamboo website. The company also sells bamboo ear buds and clothes pegs.


  • Lush Toothy Tabs are little tablets of toothpaste that come in a cardboard box.

Please help us to build this database by sharing any information on plastic-free products you find! You can email TalkPlastic, fill out our online form, or comment on the TalkPlastic Facebook page.


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