Green Glit­ter

Guilt-free tips for adding sparkle in an eco-glam way.

Good - - BEAUTY - Words Carolyn Ent­ing

Guilt-free tips for adding sparkle to your glam beauty looks

In the fam­ily tree of ocean-harm­ing sub­stances, glit­ter is a close re­la­tion to the mi­crobead. Sparkly and small, it’s also get­ting past our fil­tra­tion sys­tems and en­ter­ing the marine food chain.

But if you’re still after a bit of sparkle, fear not. Here are some of the pros and cons of the eco-friendly al­ter­na­tives.

Syn­thetic mica

(syn­thetic flu­o­r­phl­o­go­pite)

Used by eth­i­cal veg­e­tar­ian beauty brand LUSH as one of the com­po­nents of its plas­tic-free glit­ters, lus­tres and pig­ments. De­pend­ing on its thick­ness and the ox­ides it is coated with, a wide va­ri­ety of ef­fects, shim­mers and colours will be achieved. “Even though it’s syn­the­sised in a lab, it is con­structed of nat­u­ral min­er­als, so you don’t end up with the prob­lem of mi­croplas­tics which can end up in the oceans and wa­ter sup­plies,” says LUSH cre­ative buyer Gabbi Loedolff.

Mica

A nat­u­ral min­eral that is bro­ken down to cre­ate a sparkly pow­der, mica is com­monly used in cos­met­ics. To give colour and shim­mer, mi­cas un­dergo chem­i­cal pro­cess­ing that can in­volve be­ing coated with min­eral ox­ides and cov­ered with syn­thetic colourants.

Bioglit­ter

In­stead of the polyester film con­ven­tion­ally used to make glit­ter, ninety per cent of Bioglit­ter is made from a spe­cial mod­i­fied re­gen­er­ated cel­lu­lose. This comes from hard­woods, pri­mar­ily eu­ca­lyp­tus sourced from re­spon­si­bly man­aged plan­ta­tions. Even bet­ter, this plant-de­rived ma­te­rial is cer­ti­fied biodegrad­able in marine en­vi­ron­ments. The re­main­ing 10 per cent of Bioglit­ter is made up of the sparkle and colour coat­ings ap­plied to the cel­lu­lose.

Mean­while Body paint spe­cial­ists BodyFX use Bioglit­ter both for its en­vi­ron­men­tal tick and be­cause it feels more com­fort­able on the skin. Bioglit­ter is avail­able lo­cally through Body FX’s on­line store goodglit­ter.com.

“Most com­mer­cially avail­able glit­ters are based on PET film and have min­i­mal biodegrad­abil­ity,” says BodyFX owner Yolanda Bar­tram. “Bioglit­ter of­fers the same pre­ci­sion cut and highly re­flec­tive prop­er­ties as a con­ven­tional PET-based glit­ter and is par­tic­u­larly suited to dry, wa­ter-based and oil-based ap­pli­ca­tions.”

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