Why? Well, many cosmetic exfoliators contain tiny plastic microbeads. The beads are so small they get washed down the drain, going undetected by the waste water treatment and pass into the marine environment.
Microplastic pollution is becoming a major issue for the oceans. Firstly it causes blockages, malnutrition and, in some cases, starvation for a range of marine life (including mollusks, fish and seabirds). Secondly, because microplastics absorb and concentrate toxic chemicals from sea water, there are also real concerns that these toxicants could be passed up the food chain, ultimately posing health risks to humans. Yikes.
The sensible people at Fauna & Flora International have launched The Good Scrub Guide to make it easy to exfoliate your face and body, plastic-free. We like Lush’s Ocean Salt Face and Body Scrub, £7.25 for 120g and Neal’s Yard Remedies’ Honey & Orange Facial Scrub £15.50 for 75g. Find many more listed at The Good Scrub Guide.