Sustainability for cosmetic ingredients


External Scientific and Regulatory Consultant, Milan, Italy


The new demands from ‘green’ consumers are pushing cosmetic companies to get more sustainable, by combining the search for the effectiveness of their products with the use of ingredients and technologies that respect environmental and social sustainability systems. From the production of natural ingredients from renewable sources to the development of new products derived from waste or the choice of biodegradable or recyclable packaging, the cosmetics industry is demonstrating an increasing concern for the environment and is keeping pace by adapting ingredients, materials, practices and production systems.
This article focuses specifically on the sustainability of cosmetic raw materials along the supply chain. The piece explores the most sustainable sourcing and processing methods that can reduce the consumption of resources, energy and polluting chemical waste, without forgetting the importance of supporting local communities. Moreover, the article highlights the benefits of certifications, which allows greater transparency and assurance towards consumer needs. The NATRUE certification supports sustainability and ensures the quality of the natural and organic cosmetics sector, by offering users a more informed and responsible choice.

“Beauty and sustainability going hand-in-hand.” As market data shows, this would seem to be the most heartfelt and shared desire of today’s cosmetics consumers. Thanks to an increasingly widespread awareness of the environmental impact of our consumption habits and the importance of choosing ‘clean’ and ‘green’ products that respect the environment, as well as the health of the skin. 
According to Market Research Future (MRFR), the Natural and Organic Cosmetics Market is expected to grow at a 9.49% CAGR and reach over USD 77,53 billion by 2030 (1). Moreover, the market research institute Nielsen IQ confirmed that sustainable and ‘green’ beauty will remain a priority for cosmetics consumers in 2023, who appear to be increasingly concerned about climate change, the state of the environment, and their individual impact on the climate (2). The data shows how the ‘green and sustainable’ trend (e.g., vegan, plant-based, organic, reusable/refillable packaging, low environmental impact products) continues to grow in the beauty industry and is almost certain to be a lasting trend (2).
In response to this new s ...