Unlike natural ingredients used for spa breaks in Yorkshire
, high street beauty and cosmetic shops have taken the decision to remove facial products containing microbeads from their shelves by 2017.
The UK’s biggest beauty retailers Boots and Superdrug have told companies who manufacture facial wash products that contain the ‘plastic poison’ that they won’t be selling the products after next year. This is due to the threat of water pollution and harming fish and other marine life.
Other beauty and lifestyle products such as toothpaste and body scrubs are also on their way out as the UK government has recognised the damaging effects they can have after human use, warning 100,000 microbeads can be washed away into the ocean after a single shower.
The United States has already introduced a ban on ‘rinse off’ scrubs and gels for exfoliation and the UK will soon be following suit.
Louise Edge, Greenpeace’s UK senior oceans campaigner, told the Telegraph
: It’s a credit to Theresa May’s government that they’ve listened to concerns from the public, scientists and MPs and taken a first step towards banning microbeads.
“Marine life doesn’t distinguish between plastic from a face wash and plastic from a washing detergent, so the ban should be extended to micro plastics in any product that could be flushed down the drain.
More than 350,000 of the British public have now signed a petition to ban microbead-filled products – one of the largest petitions the UK has seen for an environmental issue.
Plastic is becoming a big environmental concern around the world, with large debris and smaller particles beginning to affect marine conservation. It has been estimated that 86 tons of plastic is released into UK waters from facial exfoliants alone each year.
Other products containing the plastic molecules such as sun cream, make-up and deodorants are yet to be considered a big enough threat before taking action. (Image Credit: gentlemanrook (Wikimedia Commons))