Pure, Healthy, Beauty

Microbeads are bad (and unnecessary) in every way

Microbeads are bad (and unnecessary) in every way

Microbeads are bad (and unnecessary) in every way

Once the hot trend in beauty scrubs and exfoliating skin care microbeads, tiny plastic beads, have fallen out of favor and have been increasingly banned around the world. In several States they’re already banned, but President Barack Obama signed the Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015 which will eliminate plastic microbeads by July 1, 2017.

The problem with plastic microbeads?

The big issue with plastic microbeads is they’re small plastic beads. They’re manufactured to be durable, long-lasting, very small plastic beads. This is fine as long as they’re contained. But when used in beauty products they invariably end up washed down the drain and make their way into our water ways.

Once in the water system, the durable nature of microbeads make them dangerous to aquatic life for years to come. Plastic floats and along with this these small sized microbeads resemble fish eggs, so larger fish eat them, and then get eaten themselves. The end result microbeads are aggregated into fish we might then eat – or at the very least – end up poisoning the fish and their predators (and yes that means us too).

Fortunately, most brands have already ended the use of plastic microbeads

Many major brands have aggressively and quickly removed microbeads from their products as awareness has grown and protests against their use increased. But what’s egregious to us is that these brands never had to use plastic microbeads. They were only selected because of their low low cost. Natural, safe alternatives are numerous and they’re renewable and safe for the environment.

During Mellisa B Naturally’s formulation process we never considered using plastic in our products. Instead, we evaluated dozens of natural exfoliating ingredients, from ground apricot pits, jojoba beads, and many others. Ultimately we settled on sustainably harvested Ecuadorian Ivory Palm Seed Powder as our go to exfoliating ingredient. You’ll find it in our Microdermabrasion Scrub and Pumpkin & Coconut Exfoliating Mask. It’s safe, effective, and naturally good for you and the planet.

At least microbeads will fade from all beauty products in the United States in less than a year. Sadly though, the plastic beads already in our water systems and food chain will linger for much, much longer. It’s a disturbing thought, but one we keep in mind whenever we’re working on new products – we push ourselves to choose the safest ingredients so we do no harm to you, your skin, or Mother Earth.

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