EWG Skindeep’s European counterpart, Codecheck now highlights products affected by microplastics to help conscious consumers avoid ruining our oceans.
A huge issue in the marine environment, micro beads made from non-biodegradable plastics are not even a new problem.
They are a problem caused by our industrialised world.
Three main sources for this contaminant found in the environment are:
1. Microplastics produced as such, for example for cosmetic products and industrial abrasives;
2. Broken down larger plastic particles from marine debris – google “Pacific trash vortex” – you’re welcome;
3. Synthethic fibre shed when washing synthetic clothes in a washer – yup, that polyester shirt might be vegan-friendly but ocean-friendly? Not so much.
You might want to check out WWF’s short write-up on marine problems to see the big picture of man-made marine pollution.
For starters, avoiding all cosmetic products that contain plastic beads is a brilliant idea. Codecheck has updated their info on this ingredient in their online database and in their Android and iOS apps, just like they did with palm oil and derived ingredients. This now certainly helps sort the wheat from the chaff:If the product contains microbeads, it is marked red in the ingredients list and also highlighted as “enviromentally relevant”. As I checked today, EWG Skindeep was still listing ‘polyethylene’ as roundabout safe.